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Monday, September 11, 2006
Five Years Ago....

...the world changed. And not for the better.

For anyone who doesn't know what I'm talking about, go turn on a news program, or open today's paper. You won't escape it, no matter where you are in the world.

Five years ago today, at about the time of this posting, I got an IM from my former boss that said something about a small plane flying into the World Trade Center. That's what the general thought was initially - a small plane. Then the truth started coming out, and the lone television in the building (in my ex-boss from hell's office) was turned on, and the real terror began.

There's nothing like watching a live feed from Telemundo of the towers falling to put your life in perspective. The threat of headlice in A's kindergarten class wasn't a concern. Neither was my worry that I was at the 2 1/2 year mark at my job (which is usually when I find dissatisfaction and leave). The concern was for all the people that I knew who were traveling. The concern was for anyone I knew who might be in those towers (one person, and she's alive, fine, changed careers and switched back to living on the West Coast). We faced new challenges now in a new world.

My biggest challenge? Trying to explain to a 5 1/2 year old and a 4 year old that some bad people did something really bad... and realizing that the world they will grow up in will never be the same. It will never be what I hoped it would be - peaceful. Funny thing, though, as you move past a time of great tragedy. You can still achieve a peaceful life if you want it. The world around you may be in great turmoil, but you can still create an oasis of peace for yourself and as parents that's what DH and I have done without realizing what we were doing.

That's not to say that the girls aren't exposed to what's going on in the world, but we don't sit down and talk about it every day at the dinner table. They see and hear what's going on in the news, and they've asked questions, but for the most part (like other children thier ages) they let the problems of the world go by, while still realizing that there is a war going on somewhere else in the world.

Speaking of 9/11, there have been no real credible leads on Osama bin Laden for about 2 years, according to what I read in yesterday's newspaper. So, if that is indeed the case, then either the guy is dead (and all those video messages are done by a very good body and voice double or were recorded before he died), the folks hunting for him are incompetant, or he's better at hiding than we're giving him credit for. Or we've given up because we have bigger fish to fry with this little war we have going in Iraq. I don't have an opinion on that one, or at least one that I don't want to share.

Five years ago the world changed. All of our carefully crafted individual worlds were in turmoil. Some people took over an airplane, not as your ordinary hijack attempt to get some war prisoners released, but instead to use it to create a new world order. Some others took over another airplane, and some passengers tried to take it back as it crashed in a field. Some people sat in shock around the world, while others cheered at what had happened to the 'evil Americans'. Distrust, suspicion, threats of more violence or biological warfare surfaced. As the Disney song said 'It's a Whole New World', but unfortunately it's not like the song's point of discovering a whole new perspective when love enters the scene. It's a world where we don't know when the next suicide bomber is going to strike, when the next airplane takeover attempt is going to happen.

It's not over, as evidenced by the attempt to get some liquid explosives onto a US bound plane in the UK recently. It's never going to be over, because there will continue to be people who try and do something to further whatever message they think we need to hear and others who will raise children in the belief that this is the way to get the message across. They will be as fervent in teaching thier children about this way of communication, as I am about teaching my children about peace and understanding.

Five years ago, the world changed. And I had to learn how to talk to my children about war.

Five years ago, the world changed. And people lost thier lives and thier loved ones.

Five years ago, the world changed. And people learned to continue living thier lives in the new world order.

Five years ago, the world changed...