Within the last 16 years, a lot has happened yet, it surprises me how I did not notice the evolution. Within that time frame, I transformed from a corporate employee, mother of three and suburban homeowner to a retiree, babysitter and who I was before the madness started.  I was forced to retire when my company moved to Atlanta and I did not. I wasn’t one of those who couldn’t wait to be a grandmother. But when my career evolved to that of a babysitter, I found the time and enjoyment I didn’t have when I was raising my own kids.  The madness stopped when I retired, moved to a town full of farms and good people and I had the time to enjoy what is out my window. My children are now who I love from afar.

During these last 16 years,I have seen all three kids move on to higher ground. Finishing college, getting jobs, managing expenses. My older son is a father. My younger son and daughter are on  good career path. And this week, I saw my daughter handle an escape from the hurricane. My kids are all adults and I sometimes have to remember that.

At the same time, I have evolved into who I always was but did not have time to express. I lost my brother last year and with it, the remains of my life as a child. No kids, no siblings. Just me and my husband. We fill our days with travel, outdoor activities and friends just like us. Not a bad life but it was a long road and with its challenges.

In 16 years, I have become fearful and cautious and at times, a hypochrondiac. I have morned the loss of friends who lost their life over some medical condition that they did nothing to deserve. It make me wonder if I too have something undetected. Did that mosquito bite exposed me to malaria?

I am aware of and have been targeted by scam artists and dishonest people who make a career out of cheating people out of their earnings. I get emails almost weekly by the likes of someone who wants to give me 8 million dollars and all I have to do is give him my bank account number.

Yes, my world has evolved in 16 years. Personally it has gotten better but out there, it is much more of a insecure place. I can never forget how I felt that day on September 11, 2001 as I left the World Financial Center watching Tower 1 come down not knowing what I was seeing.  Did I really see what I thought I saw.

So as I live in my wonderful town I pick up eggs from a bin and leave the money in a lock box on the table. Every weekend in the fall, the roads are clogged with families driving here to pick pumpkins and apples and see the leaves turn. We don’t talk about the Koreans or ISIS. We are aware but move on. Our town is not on the radar of evil.

Sixteen years ago, on September 11, 2001, I went to work at the World Financial Center and saw the buildings come down. I am glad to be safe but will never feel completely safe again.



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