Living a fuller life
Although Brimmer returned to work the following day—“I basically went into the office and cried”—it took several months for her to get back into a routine.
But the experience has changed her in many ways. She’s attends religious services more often, does more volunteer work for her synagogue, looks forward more to holidays and other family events, and lives a fuller life.
“I don’t want this taken the wrong way, but my husband and I used to do everything for our kids. Being the financial person I am, I’d say to my husband, ‘we can’t afford to do that; we have to do this for the kids.’ I’ve always loved baseball, so we started getting ticket plans for the Mets. And we stated going to concerts—sort of treating ourselves because you don’t know what’s going to happen.”
She’s also more assertive.
“I’m the type of person who listens to authority,” Brimmer says. “When I heard that people in the other tower were told to stay there, I probably would have stayed there. If it happened now, I’d say ‘no, I have to get out.’ I’d stand up to authority even though that’s not how I am.”
Brimmer left Xcel Federal in 2003 and took a couple months off before joining United Nations Federal Credit Union and then Pinnacle Federal, where she’s been since April 2009.
Eventually, she hopes to retire, travel to the Far East, and have grandchildren to spoil.
She plans to visit the National September 11 Memorial & Museum within next couple months. “Now is the time for the families who lost someone. Unfortunately, it’s the politicians’ time, too.”
Brimmer believes people became nicer to each other after Sept. 11 (for a while), and that they’re more of their surroundings and what can happen. Some people became more religious—others less so.
As for herself: “I’m doing fine 10 years later. I have a happy life. The kids are older and have graduated from college. I know some people who moved out of the city because they couldn’t deal with it. I had a good support network of friends and family. That’s the most important thing.”