September 11: Reflections 18 Years After the 9/11 American Tragedy by Carrie Watts
Today is the anniversary of one of the most tragic events in American history. On September 11, 2001, 2,605 Americans lost their lives. As an American, and a New Yorker, I always find this day to be a difficult one.
People in Scotland, where I live, do not mark the date at all for some reason. Although 67 British people died that day (the most of any nation except America) and a total of 372 foreign nationals from 61 countries other than the U.S. died, 9/11 is an American tragedy. The immensity of it – of so many families cleaved apart, of children losing parents and parents losing children – is more than the heart can bear. Yet, my own marriage, my children, would never have been if not for 9/11.
I only met my husband because he was in NYC on holiday from Scotland and his 9/13 return flight was grounded. So, for me, this is a very personal day. It is a part of me. And when I mourn those who were lost, I also thank them: for the courage they showed, for the gifts they were to others, and, most of all, for the sacrifice they made so I (and others like me) could have a happily ever after.
I hope that what has grown from the wreckage in the form of my little family is some small consolation to those whose futures were irrevocably changed that day. I pray that it is.