Finally a quote that defines me and my 9/11 journey.
Maya Angelou — ‘I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.’
My story is unique, my story is not. Each of us, if we are privileged to age, face challenges, loss, illness, divorce, etc. etc. Life changes us, every day in many ways. So we can expect no less when a catastrophic event happens to us. Few are immune, most face difficult challenges over the course of their lives. Our choice to cope is no choice at all.
On Monday I will again attend the annual memorial services at “Ground Zero” now a beautiful memorial plaza. I will lay flowers by my husband’s name. I will go around the North Pool and touch all of my Marsh and McLennan friends who died with him. I will be surrounded by my “other family,” my 9/11 community. I will be greeted and hugged by hundreds of surviving family members. I will listen to the thousands of names read by children who never met the parent who was killed that day, by spouses like me who lost the loves of their life, to parents and siblings, friends and co-workers, all who have journeyed these 16 years very much in the public eye, which is one element that does makes our loss distinctive.
It is a sad day. Yet on Tuesday I will continue, I will rise, doing the work I love, being the “bubbe” my grandchildren love, being the caring mother and loyal friend to those who have been by my side all these years, I will continue to honor my husband through my work, I will be back in the WL office, I will smile, I will laugh, I will be the person who faced a life changing event and survived.
I will be…..
Wife of Joel Miller
97th Floor One World Trade, Marsh and McLennan