Harvey Fucked Me Over
The aftermath of this Hurricane taking everything from me
Paint peeling the day after, My Photo
A Home Gone
My home is submerged right now, still congealed with nasty water that saturated every crevice. Things that weren’t garbage and were valuable are destroyed now. I’ve been sleeping on the floor of a second level apartment that I’m sharing with another family that lost their home.
I don’t have a bed, a TV, a couch, anything. The last few days I realized how little I need to survive. When I saw pizza the day before I literally flipped a lid. It had been three days of living on whatever I’ve brought in which is snack bars and such.
Because when you’re covered in so much water that it became a lake around you there’s no way to get food in or out. It’s been whatever non perishables that I was able to bring with me from my apartment before it was sunk.
To say the least, I have never met this level of devastation within this amount of time.
I’ve had flooding happen, but it’s stayed outside my home. Businesses around me struggle to dry and open their doors so that they can make money to face the cost of this destruction. Everything needs to be replaced. Anything that was on the floor in my home is now trash.
Not My Best Person Right Now
I’ve never been in this state of exhaustion, anger, sadness, grief, and a whole slew of emotions. They brew underneath the surface just begging to come up. I’m not my best person right now.
“How are you?”
Someone asks me at the apartment complex I’m at where we were completely submerged. Tons of water got inside the homes, sometimes higher in other spots. If any cars stayed within the parking lot they are now totaled from their engines flooding. Boats were brought in to rescue people on the first floor like me.
“I’m not good.”
“How are you?” This lady repeats. I don’t think she can comprehend someone not responding automatically with ‘good.’
“I’m not good. I’m homeless. My car may be gone. This took everything from me.”
I can’t lie right now, I won’t. You ask me how I am? I’ve lost everything, the only thing I want to not be gone is my car. It’s my first car I ever bought and I’ve realized its one of my most sentimental possessions.
The others are the photos of generations before me on my mother’s side. Some of my most favorite memories with my mother is when she brings the old photos out from these large boxes. We go over the history of my grandparents, the genealogy, the stories.
God, do I love hearing the stories attached to these pictures.
My family tells me to run, to go with my brother where he lives three hours away. Then I have a mattress, a temporary home, for at least a week or so. I can use his car and he’ll drive here to pick me up.
I can’t do that, I won’t, I need to face this fully. I need to get my life back together.
Face All This Shit And More
My car needs to be seen by a mechanic and assessed with the damage. My home needs to be moved from the destruction of that first level apartment to this second level. I need to move so much shit. There is so much that needs to get done.
And when I’m truly exhausted by all that, I also need to get back to my job. They’ve been amazing through this, trying to help me, but this is something I need to take on myself.
I can’t just be sleeping in a comfortable bed when so much needs to be done now. The water has receded and I can finally get to work with shit.
What I’ve learned from this is that much of life is stuff. And that stuff when it’s just destroyed by being water logged is garbage. You can replace it, you can move on with that.
All the furniture is just pieces of soaked scrap wood that is looking to decay and get moldy. I may be able to save my mattress, but that’s it. I will replace and rebuild those things that can be bought.
What needs to be faced are those sentimental things, memories, that can’t be redone. That are lost to this storm that claimed so much from so many. I’m one of those deeply affected by this storm, but I’m not alone.
Don’t Tell Me To ‘Stay Strong’ I Am
I’ve seen so many tears shed, so many hugs given. Heartfelt, hold onto the other person in desperation like they are your only and last lifeline on this world. I’ve seen so much of that it breaks my heart and I try not to cry in response to these emotionally saturated moments.
All the first level Apartments, these homes, have been destroyed like mine. Their things are all gone. Crying is part of the process but we fight it so hard to ‘keep it together.’
I will continue to power through, but to those who lost everything I understand the tears. The anger, desperation, exhaustion, how your bones are tired from all this fucked up bullshit this Hurricane gave you.
My heart goes out to you isn’t even the beginning or the end of what I can say. I can’t even imagine the hell you are processing through. But, we are all coming together for that other person on the other side.
I have a friend who desperately volunteers as much as he can. He tells me that the volunteer response has been so much they haven’t needed his help. Which warms my heart so much that we are getting that influx of love and help to those who need it… who have lost their homes like I have.
Our best humanity shines through these horrible, earth shattering experiences. If you are trying to help us in this aftermath thank you doesn’t say enough.
This place is devastated with the aftermath of the destruction we never imagined would happen. But, we are strong, and this is my home. I will fight for it, I will rebuild, and once my home is back I will help others who are struggling just the same.