"We will never forget."
As a New Yorker who experienced 9/11 firsthand, you'd think I'd want to write down every detail to share with you. But I don't.
The thing is: I'd prefer to forget.
I want to forget the horrific day I watched through the picture windows of my Soho office as a plane flew into a tall building, causing an explosion I had only seen in movies. I want to forget that trains stopped running, virtually trapping me in Manhattan. I want to forget the droves of business people marching uptown, covered in dust from the knee down. I want to forget the hours I couldn't contact my parents to let them know I was okay. I want to forget the way I jumped every time I heard a plane fly overhead. And I want to forget the feeling that every choice I made throughout the day was a life or death decision.
Writing those words makes me feel incredibly selfish because in the grand scheme of things, I got off easy. I don't know anyone who died that day. But even so, the day stays with me. If I could, I'd skip right over it--from 9/10 to 9/12--the same way hotels sometimes skip the 13th floor. I don't mean to negate the tragedy or the heroism of it all, but I'm tired of remembering how helpless and vulnerable we can be. I want to go back to the days before we had to take our shoes off at the airport.
It's not that I don't want to remember--I'd just prefer to forget.