"Literally I had no idea what the deal was with 9-11 when it happened."
A popular lifestyle blogger shared Thursday how the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks gets "more emotional" for her every year.
Katie Bower, a 35-year-old mother of five from Atlanta, Georgia,
Bower, who was in her late teens in 2001, was not directly affected by the terrorist attacks that horrified the world and led the nation into two protracted wars.
Nevertheless, the experience of learning about them has been trying.
It was only a year after the attacks, she said, that she found out people had actually been in the Twin Towers when planes struck them.
"I told y'all about how literally I had no idea what the deal was with 9-11 when it happened (I was a stupid airhead at the time that didn't realize that people were actually in the buildings ) and it didn't hit me until a year later that so many people died," she said.
"And now to be more aware of that situation — to understand... for the folks who lost someone. And I couldn't imagine... couldn't process... couldn't handle the day."
Nor did Bower initially understand that the Twin Towers were skyscrapers located in New York, she said in a follow-up comment on her post.
"I didn't know what kind of buildings they were or even where they were!" she said. "Honestly I thought they were like AmericasMart [exhibition center] here in Atlanta."
Bower said that being behind the curve was part of what made the journey so difficult.
"It felt filled with poignant moments of grief and remorse and honestly some shame — because who is that stupid?!" she said.
At the time of the attacks, Bower explained, she was a two-sport college athlete and lived a "life in a bubble."
"I didn't have a tv and I didn't have a newspaper in college," she said in another comment. "It was a weird time in my life when allI did was study and practice and sleep and work and work out and go on walks with boys."
Some Instagram users were sympathetic to Bower's slow discovery of the events of Sept. 11, which
"There's nothing wrong with being so naive that you can't fathom the gravity of something so completely horrible," one person wrote in a comment.
"Katie I think a lot of the people sympathizing with you not understanding 9/11 think you were a child at the time? You were in your 20s? Let this 'truth' go, it's embarrassing for you to not "know,"' someone observed.
Another person suggested, "