Monday, October 25, 2010
Memories of Hurricane Wilma
This post is inspired by my fellow blogger Belinda Munoz at the halfway point + choosing positivity. This morning she wrote about her son's bedroom ceiling caving in. Her thoughts brought me back to Hurricane Wilma and the damage that it caused. Thirty hours prior to the storm, I was sitting at the Duke Chapel listening to Duke Wind Symphony. I was caught up in the moment, the beautiful music, the beautiful chapel, my son sitting next to me. It was magical. I arrived home just in time, before the airports were shut down. We have had many hurricane warnings through the years. Most of us in South Florida did not take it seriously, because we have been bombarded by the media each and every time. This time was different. Hurricane Wilma arrived with a fury.It caused extensive damage and widespread destruction . Hours earlier, Daniel had written on the sidewalk,with chalk, "go away Wilma". We tried to find refuge in his room, where we thought it was safe, when suddenly there was a piercing noise. The oak tree, outside his window, fell onto the roof. Thankfully the tree did not pierce through into the room. We counted our blessings. Daniel was wearing his Buzz Lightyear pajamas and playing with a matchbox car which he barely ever touched. The sounds of wind and things flying outside did not phase him. He said," our house is made of strong bricks and if a tornado swallows it then it would realize how hard it is and it would spit it out of it's black hole". I think it was his way of trying to make sense of sitting in the darkness while the sound of chaos was coming from outside . After the hurricane left, it was difficult to comprehend the damage that had occurred. Our trees were down, we lost our fence, our streets were impossible to navigate through all the fallen trees. It looked like a war zone. My husband went right to work, cutting and removing the trees. Our power was out for ten days. He handed out blocks of ice, that he had made, to our neighbors. We found out that it was a four hour wait for one bag of ice being distributed by F.E.M.A. The gas stations were empty and when they received gas the wait was hours to fill up. The grocery store shelves were barren. It was a difficult time. On the other hand it was also inspiring. Neighbors were helping each other and feeling a connection to one another. It also made us realize that material things are replaceable, and that we can manage with less. The most important thing was that we had each other and we can solve whatever comes our way as long as we are together.