On my New York trip this summer, my sister, Tiffany and I visited the 9/11 Memorial Museum in Lower Manhattan. It was a high priority for us to see the memorial, but we almost didn’t visit the museum due to time and there being 1 million things to see and do in New York. Well we did visit the museum and I am so glad we did. It was meaningful at the time, but then the thoughts and reflections kept revisiting me after our visit, carrying more power and impact than I realized they would for me. My sister lost her sweet 9 year old son, Sully 2.5 years ago. Walking the museum with her made my empathy for these 9/11 victim families more real. I’m not sure that anything could prepare you for the loss of a loved one, especially a sudden loss. Tiffany and I thought it beautiful how a white rose is placed inside the name engraving of each victim on his/her birthday each year. I hope these photos will give you a glimpse and added depth to your understanding of 9/11, and that you too will experience the memorial and museum one day soon.
Each fallen tower had this beautiful scar of a gaping fountain hole in its place. It made me think long and hard about whether my own personal wounds have become beautiful scars or untreated infections ready to surface again.
The new world trade center.
Taking a peek before entering the museum here; it was filled with gigantic steel and concrete structural components of the original twin towers.
Of all the quotes and memories from the museum, the picture and quote above from a survivor impacted me the most, speaking of the emergency workers. “They were going up to their death. And I was walking down to live.”
This is the survivor staircase that was referenced in the above picture and quote.
Just one of many emergency vehicle ruins in the museum, from the 2nd fallen tower.
And commuter bikes that were never retrieved…
This quote impacted me; fear paralyzes us. We do not need to hand over our fear to anyone, especially someone who is wanting it from us. We need to find that fear and replace it with thoughts about what is present right now, how we can problem solve right now, and what faith we can restore going forward. And we most certainly cannot do it alone. We need to lean unto our God. We have our own personal choice or agency and can choose for ourselves how we handle trials and how we move forward. This is something I sometimes need to be reminded of time and time again.
If you have visited the 9/11 Memorial Museum, what were your thoughts and experiences? I would love to hear them.