By Mariah Pulver
In small towns back east, everyone knows everyone and nothing exciting usually happens.
But on September 11, something terrible happened.
I remember that my school's principal came into my classroom and whispered something to my teacher, then left.
A little while later, an announcement came over the speaker saying that we were going to have a moment of silence for everyone in New York City.
As a kid, I didn't quite understand what was going on.
All I knew was that some planes had crashed into some buildings in New York City, that a lot of parents were coming to school to bring their kids home, and that our principal said we should take cover at school as a precaution.
Nobody knew how this happened or if the planes would go to other cities in the North. But everyone was scared and confused.
Looking back, I am still sad and confused.
It is sad that our nation seemed to lose every ounce of trust.
You can no longer walk right up to the gate in an airport to wait for family or friends. Instead, people seeking to fly must go through full-body scanners at airports and be patted down by security personnel.
Many Americans are continuously suspicious of Muslims, who are too often seen only as terrorist suspects.
And America is in a seemingly never-ending war to protect our nation.
Although all of those bad things came from 9/11, some good things came of it, too.
The way that everyone came together after the attack was simply amazing. People helped one another in any way they could, no questions asked, no second thoughts.
People realized after 9/11that anyone can be a hero by helping those in need.
And most importantly, that coming together strengthened America and the pride in our country.