9/15/2008

Powerless

It's a beautiful day today. Mid 70's, bright blue sky, white puffy clouds, slight breeze. No sign of the dark sky and angry winds that sent tornadoes of green leaves and sticks down the street yesterday and smashed porches and cars with limbs of ancient trees.

Other than the large piece of our back yard tree that landed in the middle of the grass, our house and property were spared. We did spend the last 30 hours or so without electricity. Small potatoes compared to the devastation that the hurricane left down south. Not small potatoes compared to the conditions we're used to living under!

It's funny when a key part of our way of life is removed, we're almost completely paralyzed. I just couldn't think of what we normally do when we have power. My boys were fighting, the baby was fussing, and I was loosing my mind. I tried to think how I would feed us for the next 48 hours (the power company promised that the power would be on by Wed. night at the latest) without the use of our stove or refrigerator.

I had a chiropractors appointment this morning, but couldn't get through to the office to find out if they were still seeing patients. School was cancelled, so I packed all three kids into the car and then realized that I had no gas. The first station I came to had signs up saying, "Cash only". In a panic, I spent my only $10 cash on gas for $3.99/gallon and then broke down in tears. The thought of not having enough gas to drive to a bank to get more cash to I could get more gas just sent me over the edge.

I told myself, "Get a grip, sister!", found a gas station that did have power, and then spent the morning with Sarah at a local park. After lunch, another friend who lives a block away from me called my cell phone and told me that our power had been restored.

I spent the rest of the afternoon opening and closing the refrigerator and listening to the distant hum of chainsaws as our neighborhood cut it's way out of the wreckage. I just found out that our state has been declared in a state of emergency, and in our county alone over 36,000 homes are still without electricity.

When I was at home Sunday and this morning, I kept telling myself that it was OK. Look around, our house is still standing, dry and intact. We're fine and our kids are fine and our property is fine. Somehow it didn't matter. Without power, our house felt like a gilded prison cell. Like it was mocking me when I habitually flipped on light switches or reached for the phone. My "power" truly felt gone.

I am intensely grateful that we were spared any damage, and have a new appreciation for what the victims of natural disasters experience all over the world. Oh, and I hope school still isn't closed tomorrow!

3 readers took time to leave a thought:

Kelli September 16, 2008 at 9:07 AM  

Amen! I'm right there with you. Who knew life could be turn upside down without power for a bit. We were lucky not to have a lot of damage. Hang in there.

MerrandaVK September 17, 2008 at 10:00 PM  

I can't imagine not having power for that long, having children to take care of. Yes... compared to others it is small potatoes, but still difficult I am sure. How wonderful that your home didn't receive any damage. Tornadoes are awful, I've been in a couple. Blessings to you and your family - Merranda

Faith Hope Love Mama September 19, 2008 at 6:44 AM  

I'm so glad that you didn't have any damage. Not fun without the power though. Hope the weekend is wonderful for you. :)

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