It was a "Where were you when. . ." moment.
I was in the kitchen getting my then preschooler ready to go to school, with a toddler in a high-chair and an almost one-year old scooting around on the floor. My husband was in Washington, DC for a class. The TV was on and I was watching the towers, not really comprehending what was happening or seeing. I remember thinking what a freak accident to have a plane hit the tower. I was in mom-get-the-kids-ready-for-the-day mode. My phone rang, it was my husband who simply asked if I knew what was going on and that he was okay - he couldn't talk long - and then he was gone. I still really didn't get what was going on.
I remember finally realizing what was happening and not being able to comprehend it. I remember the empty skies for days. I remember hearing fighter jets at night, but never seeing them. I remember the patriotism flying in every flag on every house, in the words on every billboard and sign. I remember the candles on the porches in the evening. And I remember not being able to watch more than 10 minutes of news updates and photos from the sites.
I remember my husband returning home, after driving cross-country because the airports were closed. His stories of tanks in the streets of DC. Other people stranded and driving home and chatting at the gas stations as they crossed paths.