Natural disasters


Natural disasters make me rethink my life choices and wish I’d been trained in emergency management (which, incidentally, happens to be in my college at UVU) or didn’t work full time so I could volunteer with the Red Cross. Or had some amazing skill and/or super human strength or didn’t pass out at the sight of blood because all I really want to do is help people!

This was the view outside one of my best friend’s house in Dickinson on Sunday.

When I talked to her Thursday she was dealing with the hurricane barreling down upon her family alone because her husband–who moved them to Texas to take a job helping rebuild after natural disasters–has been commuting between Texas and New Jersey for months on end rebuilding after Katrina.

I was wracking my brain trying to figure out how to get her out of there. I offered to crowdfund an evacuation for her and her kids. I even offered to fly in to wherever I could get to and help her drive if she needed.

When I checked with her on Friday he had told his boss he needed to get home to his family and had caught a 6am flight out, making it home just hours before the Harvey hit.

When I talked to her Sunday morning their home had flooded–you can see how deep the water is on their car–and her husband was out helping people who needed rescuing from their attics.

My 26-year-old son’s 2nd grade teacher saw my comment about Becky’s situation on Facebook and sent me her contact info with an offer of a place to stay if Becky could get out. She even offered to come pick her up whenever the flood waters receded enough to make safe passage possibly (which they still haven’t). I cried with gratitude at such a generous offer for a stranger.

Today the water has soaked in a bit, but they are still socked in by flood waters.( Unless someone came to pick me up in a boat, I wouldn’t want to go anywhere.)

Tonight there is a tornado warning.

I will send money, of course, but it doesn’t feel like enough. I want to go feed people and hug people and let them cry on my shoulder and help them find clean clothes and play with their kids so they can take a nap and forget about how awful it is even if for just a few minutes.

[Day 161 of Ann Dee Ellis’ 8-Minute Memoir.]