Friday, September 11, 2009

September 11th – A Fine Line Between Looking Forward and Looking Back

Editors Note: I was going to publish my piece which is a personal account of the events on Spetember 11th, but at the last minute, I decided to publish the following entry instead. If you are interested in reading about my experience on that day, please email me at and I will send it to you.

It’s hard to believe it’s been eight years since September 11th. Where do you put an event that rocks you to the core, yet each year, is overshadowed by the natural continuation of life? The cliché comes to mind – “Life Goes On.”

And it has.

The first couple of years found me frozen in the past – reliving the day in honor of all that was lost and not to be forgotten. Two years became three and four and eventually, I began to wonder, each year as the day approached, whether it was wise to immerse myself in the past or focus on the future in front of me.

At what point are we allowed to put the past behind us without dishonoring the importance of the very event that inevitably shaped the future? We all move forward naturally – if we’re lucky. However, on this day, I always find myself torn. Part of me doesn’t want to think about it anymore. It took me so long to move past the pain, the nightmares, the adjustment - all of it. Why would I want to bring it all back? At the same time, why would I want to forget something that changed all of our lives collectively and individually all at once?

This year, I am in another country. It would be easy to forget as in Mexico, the days all mold into one and everyday is Saturday. But my friend arrives today – a tricky “coincidence” that in spite of my isolated existence this month, I am forced to acknowledge the day.

And I will. But this year, I will honor the past by focusing on what I’ve learned since then. I will think about my progress forward since that day eight years ago and most importantly, I will honor the love and support that got me through the aftermath. I will be thankful that my family and friends are all healthy and alive and just an email away (for now).

Life will go on as it always does – and that’s okay. As long as we acknowledge where we’ve come from as we continue our journey into the future. I will never forget, but I will continue on.

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