This day ten years ago we all watched on in horror as events unfolded in New York. I cried all day that day. But my tears were for a number of reasons. As the towers were coming down, I was being rushed to hospital in early labour with my third child. I’d had two miscarriages that year so going into labour at 25 weeks was one of the scariest experiences of my life.
There was a strange atmosphere in the hospital. On one hand, there were tears of joy as mothers were being wheeled from the labour ward with their newborns in their arms. In complete contrast, little groups of people had begun to gather around the televisions, gasping in horror as the footage unfolded.
A doctor checked me out and confirmed I was indeed in labour. I was gutted. I was admitted to a ward and everything was explained to me. They gave me medication to try to slow down the contractions. That was good, wasn’t it? If they could slow them down, maybe they could get them to stop. Then they gave me an injection to develop the baby’s lungs. That didn’t feel so good. They were expecting I’d probably deliver the baby soon. A midwife came in to talk to me and to warn me what to expect from a baby so premature. It wasn’t good.
My contractions continued through the evening and night as I lay in bed and watched one of the most awful tragedies I’d ever seen. I cried for all those innocent people killed and wounded. I cried for the families who were waiting for news of their loved ones. I cried for myself. Then I cried from guilt. Surely I shouldn’t feel sorry for myself on the day the world will never forget?
For me, a miracle happened. The bleeding eased. The contractions stopped. The scan showed my baby was happy and settled and didn’t seem to want to make an appearance any more. I got lucky. Not so for the victims of 9/11. May we never forget.