This I Believe

brian - countryside, Illinois
Entered on October 6, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: carpe diem
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As I walked into school, it seemed like a normal day of fifth grade. I went to my class room, talked with friends and went through the normal steps for first period. I was a child who had no idea of the attack occurring across the country.

As I sat down for second period I first heard something about a terrorist attack, but I had no idea what that meant or what a terrorist was. That day classes were called off early and we went to church. Football practice was canceled, recess was canceled, and all the teachers said were, “Something bad has happened in New York”. When my mom came to pick me up she said, “Everything is okay, they are fine”. I replied, “Who’s fine and why wouldn’t they be?” My mom then told me that two planes were flown into the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center, the spot my uncle Chris worked, and down the block from where my uncles Bobby and Mike worked. That day fate ran its course, as all three were unhurt.

So, I believe in fate and its apparent gifts in our lives. While thousands of people died that day, and millions were forever affected by the tragedy that took place in New York and Pennsylvania, all I thought about was, “Thank God they are okay.” My uncle Chris, who is my sister’s godfather, was on a plane to Washington D.C. when the attacks took place; fate ran its course and kept him away from New York for the day. My uncle Bobby was late for work that day, my uncle is never late. Finally, my uncle Mike did not have to go into the office until later on that fateful day, which kept him away from the attacks. To me this is an example of happiness coming from tragedy– while our nation was shook, I was happy to have my uncles safe.

After seeing and hearing about the friends my uncles lost that day, I have tried to value everyday as if it’s my last. September 11, 2001 made me realize how precious life is and how quickly it can all be taken away. I do not fear death. In fact, I believe fate will take its course. But it is my job to do my best on the path I have chosen to traverse.