I spent yesterday reflecting on the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on our country. I will never forget sitting in my eighth-grade English classroom, trying to comprehend what was happening as the television showed images of a first plane, and then a second, crashing into the twin towers. The terrorist attacks on the U.S. changed the way we look at the world, and the country remembers the lives lost, the heroes made and the families impacted by this heartless assault on America.
As a rancher, I've always had a deep appreciation for those country music artists who could capture the feelings and emotions of everyday folks. I ran across a top-10 playlist of patriotic country music songs that I listened to yesterday on my iPod while stacking square bales with my husband, Tyler.
10. "Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue" - Toby Keith
9. "If You're Reading This" - Tim McGraw
8. "Arlington" - Trace Adkins
7. "8th of November" - Big & Rich
6. "Fighting Side of Me" - Merle Haggard
5. "Only In America" - Brooks & Dunn
4. "God Bless the USA" - Lee Greenwood
3. "The Ballad of Ira Hayes" - Johnny Cash
2. "Some Gave All" - Billy Ray Cyrus
1. "Where Were You (When the World Stopped Turning)" - Alan Jackson
Do you remember any of these songs? Although not all about the Sept. 11 attacks, each uniquely celebrate what makes us Americans. It’s our pride in country, our devotion to liberty, and our boundless support for those men and women who make great sacrifices to protect our freedoms that make the U.S. a truly wonderful place to live. I’m so thankful to be able to pursue my own version of happiness, and for me, that’s enjoying the great outdoors, raising cattle and spending time with my family.
What’s your version of happiness? Where were you 10 years ago when you heard the news of the attacks? What does this milestone mean to you?