Growing up as a little girl, I wanted to travel to New York City and I wanted to sit down in a cafe and look at the Empire State Building all day. This iconic building is not just another big skyscraper in a big city. It is significant to having “that” New York feelings. New York City is not just a state literally, it is a state of mind. A feeling. And the Empire State Building is all part of that.
The Empire State Building soon became a symbol of hope for that little girl with big dreams. Whenever I saw a postcard from New York and saw the picture of the building, I would smile. A smile of believe and hope, that one day I will see this building in real life but never in a million years did I think I will be doing it with my children.
I came and I saw and I thought it was enough until today. Today I felt very humbled and grateful to God for being able to not only see this iconic building, but to go inside with the kids. I love showing the kids around New York City and telling them stories. Stories of hope, faith and believing in the impossible. Stories of people from every corners of the earth coming to one place to dream and to do things they had only dreamed of. To pursue a passion and feel liberated. To fully be themselves and express themselves without the fear of shame or persecution. A city of hope and second chances.
It wasn’t the private tour or the lovely Krystle who was so kind and generous with her time and helping us take some (a lot of) pictures that made this visit special, I will never forget the twinkle in her smile as she showed us the switch that turns on the lights of the Empire State Building or her soft voice as she tells us stories about the building that has now become one of the modern-day wonders of the world.
It was that feeling that was familiar yet almost forgotten. I thought seeing the Empire State Building from several other buildings or restaurants was enough. I thought I had my happy ending in New York, until I walked into those doors on 20 W 34th street across from the Banana Republic that faithful afternoon.
There is a difference from seeing the doormen in their cute uniforms to hearing them welcoming you into the building and wishing you a lovely time. Riding the elevators and thinking wow so this is it, I am IN the Empire State Building! Just wow!
Getting off and stepping into that observation deck and seeing those now too familiar observing binoculars that you could see six states from – New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Connecticut and Delaware. Seeing this beautiful city, New York, that has now become our home. Seeing the hospital where I gave birth to my baby daughter. Seeing Central Park where we were just riding our bikes the other day.
There’s a feeling I thought so hard to describe, it was electrifying. Perhaps this is what accomplishment felt like. Knowing that you have conquered your greatest desire. And not just alone, but you have been able to share that moment with your loved ones. This was by a mile, the best mothers day ever.
Going to the Empire State Building is not about what you would see, it is about what you would feel. The feeling that it evokes in you. Something that you never knew you had. You come out and the lingering feeling of euphoria stays with you for a long time. We came to New York City to see the empire state building but we ended up seeing New York City from the Empire State Building.