This is an iPhone photo so not the best. But one thing that causes my anxiety to get out of control, is having to take an elevator. I know silly right? But hear me out. My mom used to work at the WTC and I live in the city near NYC. I was 10 years old when I witnessed one of the most traumatizing moments of my life. Now I know you must be wondering what does elevators have to do with 9/11 but I lost my innocence, my belief that I could be invincible. I loved taking the elevator in the old WTC because it was an adventure, now it reminds me of anxiety. I get claustrophobic and anxious that I’ll die in skyscraper. This is always so difficult for me since I’m a photographer who shoots in NYC a lot. People take so much of their lives for granted; how easy simple tasks as taking an elevator is to them. Today, I had to shoot an event and I did it. I had help of course but I did and the view at the top, though it was only the 20th floor, was beautiful and a gift. Wanted to share this gift with you all that it’s okay that we’re not normal, life isn’t anyway. And I know this world wasn’t built for us but we’re STILL here navigating it as best as we can, and that’s beautiful.
— Ashley Jacklyn