I wasn't traumatized. I'm still not. Sure, my sleep schedule went haywire for a bit, but anything can screw with my sleep schedule. Reading The Stand screwed with my sleep schedule.
I didn't see the smoke as I walked home from school. The window at the back of my computer room faces northeast, toward the city. Did I look there and see smoke? I don't remember. I must have--Manhattan is about twenty miles away. But I don't remember. The worst thing is, I wanted to see the smoke. How sick is that? I wanted to be able to imprint it onto my memory. The closest I got, though, was the next day in school, when we had to close the windows because the wind from New York was coming our way.
Everyone else here seems deeply scarred by 9/11. The girl next to me in sociology class talked about how she tried to go help out that day (she got stuck in traffic), and she had nightmares for months afterwards. The teacher talked about his friend, whose husband was only officially identified as one of the dead relatively recently, when they found some small part of him; he talked about the little kid he knows whose uncle died. The kid's mother was in building 7 but got out in time. She still works in New York, and the kid cries every day when she leaves for work. I don't feel a thing.
I'm scared that there'll be another attack and I'll die in it. I'm scared of what the current administration is doing because I'm afraid that starting a war with Iraq will precipitate another attack that might endanger me. Oh, sure, intellectually I know that other people would have a whole lot more chance of dying, and intellectually I despise the Administration's actions for that reason, but there's no connection between intellect and emotion. I feel for no one but myself.
What's wrong with me? Why hasn't 9/11 been seared into my memory forever, like it was with the other 18 million inhabitants of the New York metropolitan area, or at least those among that 18 million who've got any humanity in them at all? I've heard that long-term use of Prozac can dull one's emotions, destroy one's sense of empathy. I used Prozac for years; is that it? Or am I just once again hunting down an outside source to blame for my own failings?
There are people in California who were more hurt than I was last year. What's wrong with me?