Your Loved Ones

Franchesca - 44139
Entered on January 12, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family, love
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

I believe that loved ones should never be taken for granted.

It was a sunny day in Piscataway, NJ, but as the day progressed I started to feel dark and cold inside. The images of the twin towers played over and over in my head like a tape that won’t eject. (The endless fire, hurt, frightened people screaming and running for their lives). Panic and confusion encased a thick black cloud had taken over not only the city of New York, but the whole United States.

I had never witnessed my father cry before. “What’s going on?” I asked my dad. Too devastated to talk, he turned away from me, picked up the phone then franticly started to push buttons over and over trying to get a dial tone. All the lines were down. By this time tears were streaming down my dad’s cheeks. “I can’t get through to anyone,” he said hopelessly. I slowly started to put the pieces together. Today was the day my mom was due back from her trip to England. She had been gone for over a week, and I was very excited to see her. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks: mom, traveling, planes crashing, dad crying … AH A AH! (Scream). My heart stopped, I couldn’t breathe, the room started to spin. What if mom was on one of those planes? What if I never get to say goodbye. When I could no longer be alone with my thoughts anymore, I ran to my father’s arms and asked him “Is mommy dead?” All he did was hug me and turn away. I was speechless. I went to sit in a corner, and then started to cry at the thought of life without my mother. No one to tuck me in at night the way only a mother can do, no more mother and daughter days, no one to talk to …no more mom.

In what seemed to take hours we discovered that this tragedy had only hit American soil. My mother’s plane did take off but had to return back to London shortly after because of what had taken place here in the US. Even though we still could not get in contact with her until the following day at least we knew that she was safe. Every bad thought that crossed my mind started to flee; my heart didn’t feel so heavy.

When I returned to school, it turned out that I was very lucky compared to my friend Jalen, who did not receive good news. His dad was missing. I felt so guilty that I decided not to share my story with him. Instead I took this experience and learned that loved ones should never be taken for granted because tomorrow is not promised to anyone.