I didn’t really believe a 10-year anniversary would mean much to me.
However, as I should know already, most of the time I am completely confused and utterly dumbfounded by what affects me and what doesn’t.
September 11th, 2001 happened 10 years ago, making me 35 years old.
In great thanks to my cousin Penn Holderness and incredible teachers at Tarboro High School, Matt and April Smith, I have found some time to mourn and express some great sadness that needed to be expelled.
Brilliant and loving teachers at Tarboro High School, Matt & April invited me to speak about 9/11 (as it is so often referred) during 4th period today. It is extremely difficult to talk about because I never want my words to be anything but humble and reverent.
These were my words:
My name is Inie Ribustello, and I graduated from Tarboro High in 1994. I moved to New York four years later.
After culinary school, I found a job on the top floor of One World Trade Center. It was the job of a lifetime, and my plan was to stay there forever.
When I was 25, my world changed in every way, shape and form.
I lost my job, I lost any sense of security I had ever felt and I lost 85 friends who I had seen everyday for the past three years.
Imagine this: you go to school on Monday and you see all of your teachers, your fellow students, the principal and the custodian and coaches, everyone you come into contact with on a day-to-day basis.
Let’s say that the next day you stay at home because you don’t feel well, or maybe you skip school with a friend or maybe you’re on vacation with your family. For whatever reason, you just don’t come to school.
While you’re not there, something terrible occurs. Actually, the unthinkable happens, and everyone who came to school that day is either killed or unable to be found.
That is the cruel reality of September 11th, 2001.
My work, my friends, my life was on the 106th floor of One World Trade Center.
While I was in Tarboro for my sister’s wedding, I saw it all crumble on national television, never to be seen, touched or heard again.
Did I ever believe in one million years that my life would be affected by terrorists?
But it was. It was affected and then re-affected and ten years later, it continues to affect everything about me.
I will never ever forget what happened, and because of 9/11, I have an entirely new definition of what forever really means.
My cousin Penn gave me the opportunity to speak about the events that encompassed that horrible morning, and for that, I am forever grateful. He conducts a beautiful interview in the following:
When I think about September 11th, 2001, I don’t cry as many tears as I used to.
Instead, I am more saddened by the day-to-day events occurring right now in our present world. My emotions run deeper than they once did 10 years ago, and my heart hurts a little more than the last time I rode up the elevator to the 107th floor.
Tears may not come as quickly when that tragic day is mentioned, but they do fall more freely for good-byes that weren’t supposed to be just now.