As much as it breaks my heart that I will not be able to decorate (and celebrate) for Thanksgiving and Christmas this year in our traditional way, I try to focus on what I CAN DO….. be THANKFUL for what I do have. I am blessed with my beautiful family & 2 dogs that are safe, a home where I can still live in & rebuild , and a support system of family, friends, & community that God has placed into our lives to help us through this disaster.
We were one of the unfortunate families that flooded during Hurricane Harvey. A devastating storm that tore up the Texas gulf coast, and then continued to beat down torrential rain for several days in the Houston, TX region. Our house backs up to the Barker Reservoir (retention tank) that crested & spilled over into our neighborhood- flowing upstream. Flooding was NEVER supposed to happen, yet it did. We evacuated by walking through thigh high water, and loaded our dogs, crate, and luggage on an air mattress to get to safety. And I consider us lucky- it could have been much worse.
PART 1: THE DESTRUCTION
DAY BEFORE WE FLOODED: FRONT PORCH/YARD
Here is a picture of what the front of our house looked like the day we decided to evacuate. Note water line at grass area at this picture and then 4th picture. This is in the morning. There is a grass median where that tree and shrub are, in the middle of the cul-de-sac.
Here are my 2 girls and husband leaving with the girls’ suitcases to go to our friends’ house. Note the top of the fire hydrant to left (close to tree).
This is the last picture we took before we left- note the water line (over grass). This was right after lunch.
THE PHYSICAL DAMAGE: INSIDE
The blue air mattress (on sectional) is what we used to evacuate our dogs and luggage on, while wading through the high water.
THE PHYISCAL DAMGAGE: OUTSIDE
MORE: AFTER PICTURES
Coming into our street on a canoe …..yep this is supposed to be a street.
THE EMOTIONAL DAMAGE: IN OUR HEARTS
No one can prepare you for the emotional stress that a flooded house puts you under. We only had 4 inches, but the destruction that comes with sitting water in a house is indescribable, as well as the smell. It was awful. All of the walls were cut up to 4 feet to allow for the drying process to take place. And here is what that destruction looks like.
People have said that a “house is just a house, people make it a home” or “it’s just things.” Well, those items are OUR things, OUR mementos. The structure and furnishings might make up a house, but the MEMORIES made within a house along with the members inside of that house are what make it a HOME.
Our house can be rebuilt, but there is a period of mourning over the past…. that we were not ready to give up. We did not choose to remodel or to move to another house. There was no time to emotionally prepare and say our goodbyes to the “old.” This is a loss of something taken without permission, and for things we will now forget. It will take years before we remember some of the items that were damaged or destroyed in the flood.
PART 2: THE REBUILD (STAY TUNED)
We are KATY/HOUSTON STRONG!!
Thank you soooooo much to all of you who have helped us during this roller coaster of a ride- words can NOT express how much it means to us to have you in our lives- BIG HUGS!!!! Please continue to pray for our communities & cities affected.
LOVE & HUGS 🙂