I'll never forget the details surrounding either. When I first heard about the planes hitting the Twin Towers, I was transitioning between P.E. and Physics. It was in Mrs. Rosato's classroom that we turned on the TV and watched the events unfold. I will never forget the uncertainty I felt all day and the fear that strikes could continue across the U.S.
I vividly remember evacuating for Katrina as well. We'd evacuated for plenty of hurricanes (that's just part of living in NOLA) and always would come back to half a shutter on the ground, some other minor wind damage, or for the most part -- nothing. Evacuations were really just spontaneous vacations to "exotic" locations like Jackson, Miss. But this one felt different. And it was. I waited out the storm with my boyfriend in Lafayette, all the while watching my hometown under water on television. Just like watching the coverage of 9/11, it was surreal.
Both events happened in major years of my life. 9/11 was in my senior year of high school, and HK in my senior year of college. As I was busy making decisions to shape my future, these events were busy shaping me too.
We are all different today because of these events, some more than others, but all of us have lived the aftermath of these tragedies. We are stronger, wiser and more united. My heart goes out today to all those who lost loved ones on September 11, 2001, and to anyone whose life is forever changed because of August 29, 2005. You are in my thoughts and prayers today and every day.