Joel and I were discussing how much life has changed since 9/11. I remember the military before, all pressed shirts and dress pants. Now they all wear combat uniforms. I remember flying to Illinois that August, and on my return flight home Joel walked me to my departure gate. Now, you are not allowed past security without a boarding pass.
But I also remember how it seemed every house had a flag hanging right after that day. I remember just praying and praying for the safety of people I didn't know. I remember the feeling of pride mixed with sadness on sending my husband away to war- the war completely accelerated in response to that day.
Pride because I joined many, many wives before me who released their husbands to the care of the Almighty, as their only protection from the danger they would surely face. I was so proud that Joel joined, knowing that the question was "when" he would deploy, not "if".
My generation was welcomed into the ranks of the war generations: Vietnam, Korea, the World Wars,the Civil and Revolutionary Wars, and so many more. There are differences, to be certain, but also so many similarities. Fear, anger, but mixed with pride, and a much greater realization that the Lord was (and always has been) totally in control.
This was, and always will be a defining event in our history. To personally experience that day was almost unbelievable. We will never be able to forget. And I, for one, don't want to.