As we know, today is a very special today. It means a lot of different things to a lot of different people. Everyone has a story. Here's mine:
I was in school in Indiana. We were taking the standardized I-Step test. During one of the breaks, there was an eerie silence in the hallways. Teachers were walking around, whispering to each other, and quickly disbanding. By our lunch break, the news was announced and we turned on the TV. It was shocking. Rightfully so, all of the events were cancelled after school. I went home on an oddly quiet school bus. There was no traffic and clear skies.
When I reached home, my mom was in hysterics. She couldn't stop watching the tv and crying. Shortly after we got home, we heard the loudest noise I've ever heard. My mom started screaming, "They bombed Wright Pat (the nearest Air Force base)!" It turned out that it was just a sonic boom, but it was just enough to make it too close for comfort. I remember being scared to go to sleep that night. I wasn't sure if I would wake up the next morning.
Luckily (and obviously), I did wake up the next morning. The following weeks started out strangely, but eventually caused an overwhelming amount of community connections. Even seemed a little bit more fragile and open to the fact that we all needed each other. Despite the horrifying things that happened that day, it bought us closer as a community, and as a country.
I took my first trip to New York six months later as a scheduled choir trip. While there, I knew that I belonged there. It felt like home. Six years later, I took the plunge and moved to New York. My parents were not pleased, but they knew that I was going to do what I wanted to do. Almost four years later, I realize it's the best decision I've ever made in my life. It was quite the risk; I had no job, no friends, and an apartment at the end of the 2 line. Luckily I got a job within a month, made some great friends, and have a much better apartment in a safer neighborhood.
Living in New York gives me a certain amount of pride individually and for my city. I was a nieve small-town girl that smiled too much and somehow have come out striving. As for my city, we're strong than ever, even through earthquakes, hurricanes, and corrupt politicians. Although I've wanted to throw in the towel so many times after subway creepers, sky high prices, and smelly streets, I will always love you, New York.