Posted in Hurricane Harvey

How Fast Life Changes After a Hurricane

Last post I was sitting on a Texas beach in Galveston pondering ways to simplify my life. How to rid my life of unnecessary things. And within no time Hurricane/ Tropical Storm Harvey took nearly every belonging away.

The nation knows Harvey blasted on shore in Rockport and then stopped in Houston causing catastrophic flooding but this demon of a storm wasn’t satisfied.  After flooding Houston it moved East and decided to spend a few days dumping what seems to be half the Gulf of Mexico on SETX. I live in the small town of Vidor in an area we call The Golden Triangle. I’m heartbroken by the devastation to not only my home but thousands more in our little corner of Texas.  Yesterday we held our breath as water creeped up our yard. We somehow felt that a tree falling against our house that morning was a good omen because it only broke a window. We were diligent homeowners. We went out in the pouring rain to get sandbags. We sandbagged all the doors. We cleared gutters as the rain fell and fell. We naively felt we would be ok.

We discussed how water might creep in a little so we added more sandbags and then sat down to dinner as a family. As we ate the rain intensified non stop. It was just a short time later we noticed the first swirls of water.  After a quick look around we saw water coming in under all the exterior walls.  (I’m still mystified how water penetrates concrete and brick.) I couldn’t believe how fast it rose. We immediately knew we had to go. As fast as it was rising we feared our window of escape was closing. Everyone threw together a bag of clothes. We grabbed juice, milk and food for our two year old grandson and piled in my husbands work truck. It was The only vehicle now high enough to clear the quick rising water. As usual I was the last out of the house. I shut off all the breakers and locked the door. As I stepped over the sandbags I was horrified to see I was knee deep in recently inch deep water. Me, my husband, daughter, son, grandson and grandsons mother along with our chihuahua left our possessions behind.  We had the most important stuff-FAMILY.  After taking one route after another to find them flooded we managed to get safely to my mother in laws house across town.   I was beyond grateful to be safe and dry but was unable to sleep as I listened to the deluge of rain, wind and thunder carry on all night. By morning I knew to expect the worse. I was  heartbroken as one friend after another posted pictures on social media of their flooded homes.  Later that morning my husband managed a ride with a friend in a bigger truck to check on our home. It was as bad as I’d imagined all night. Four foot of water in our home. All my neighbors too. As he sent me photos I went numb. I have refused to cry. It will change nothing. We have what is important. As I lay here in the same warm dry bed I am so terribly sad but so grateful we got out in time. So many still tonight are being rescued by boat.  My husband earlier went out just as dark was falling to pick up a cousin and their family. The rescue boats got them to higher ground. My husband drove them to a friends house.  How terrified they must have been. I doubt sleep will come easy for any of us tonight.