You know sometimes you just have to get away. Even if everything is going well, it can be exhausting. I have been having a good bit of trouble staying focused and just making it day in and day out. I felt burnout coming on and didn’t know how to ward it off. Just in a rough spot. The thing about getting into those spots is that you can lose perspective of being thankful. I decided to make a trip to my sister’s house in Friendswood for the weekend, since it was my nephew’s 15th birthday and all. She lives in an area that took damage from Hurricane Harvey. I want to talk about what I saw while I was there.
Surveying the Damage
I saw people’s whole lives in their front yard. Ruined pictures, furniture, doors, drywall (so much drywall and sheet rock), toys, carpet, beds, appliances, electronics, everything. We always think, “Well it is just stuff. At least we are okay.” That is the way to view it. However, there is an element of what made your home, your home that is now gone. You don’t need a TV to live. It sure is nice though. It made me realize that while, yes, be thankful that your family is okay, sometimes all of that “stuff” goes with family. No dining room table to have a family meal at. No refrigerator to hang kids’ drawings on. No couch to cuddle on. It is all in the front yard in a pile of undistinguishable rubble.
Some houses are still so bad that the owners are in RVs in the driveway trying to live that way.
I don’t know if I will ever feel like, “Oh well. It is just stuff.” ever again. On one hand, yes. On the other, it really isn’t. There were huge black trucks with huge black box trailers going through the neighbor hood about once an hour. They were hauling the stuff on the lawns away. Hauling away their lives is what it felt like to watch it. I heard the guilt in people’s voices who were barely affected. My sister took me on one street that the water had run so hard it turned a stop sign around. My sister said the worst sound she heard was people wading through water with their cats because the cats were screaming. I cannot imagine that sound.
The Good Parts
But in the midst of all of the depressing stuff, I saw people helping each other. I saw churches driving through neighborhoods handing out water and food, the Red Cross did the same, I saw signs up that said, “Free Hot Meals!” and had times posted. I saw humanity. I saw the human spirit in people receiving a hot meal and feeling normal at least for a few minutes. I have also seen photographers who are offering to help replace some photos that people had done with them. I saw kids riding their bikes and playing in the yard. I even saw one house that had a couple decorating for fall behind all of the debris in the front yard.
Being with my sister is always a good refresher for me. In this instance, it was refreshing to be with her, but also eye opening about what other people are living through right now, including my own family. It was promising to me to see the strength and the pure backbone of the people who are still working to get back to normal. Their resilience is inspiring and should be noted. Friendswood Texas taught me something this weekend, and let me walk away with a sense that if these folks can overcome what has happened to them, then I certainly can.Hermann says please like and share!