Pitchfork & Pen—Harvey Wasn’t Just a Rabbit

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I don’t think there is anyone in the U.S. that doesn’t know that our country is under the onslaught of Hurricane Harvey. My heart goes out to the families and friends of those that perished in this storm, as well as those that suffered the loss of homes and belongings.

Shiner, Texas took a beating when Harvey parked just southwest of our little town. Victoria, which is south of us, was hit very hard. Watching the national news and seeing people standing in line waiting for a warm meal in a city where I go to shop or visit the doctor was startling, to say the least.

Now Houston and communities east of there have endured major flooding. The commonIMG_2504 word used to describe it is “epic.” I think that may be an understatement.

I didn’t even know there was a storm brewing. I first heard of Harvey as it was crossing over the Yucatan Peninsula. Weather reporters debated whether it would actually strengthen into more than a tropical storm, but they showed a trajectory that would affect my part of Texas.

I lived in Virginia when Hurricane Hugo came over Floyd in September of 1989. I had no idea how to prepare for a hurricane. The mountains of Virginia are normally a safe haven from weather like that. My eyes were opened with that storm.

After moving to Texas, there have been a couple of potential threats to our coastline. You can’t live in a location such as this without hearing and reading about hurricane preparation.

20170826_154008.jpgSo, last week, we stocked up on food and water for us as well as all for our animals. I tried to not only have enough for several days as instructed, but also a couple of weeks past the storm in case the stores could not restock. By Thursday, Harvey exceeded the initial forecast of a tropical storm, and was rapidly growing into a monstrous hurricane.

I am not ashamed to admit that as the winds howled around us and the rain bucketed down, I was scared. Really scared. And not just for me. I guess it’s a mom thing. I hoped I had made the right decision to stay and had not put my daughter in danger. And at the storm’s peak, I knew that there was no going back. I also worried about friends that lived right on the coast and were bound to take a huge hit. It’s a terrible feeling of helplessness. I cannot begin to imagine the emotions of those who have lost everything.

The storm has moved on from us, but as the Guadalupe River rises, major flooding is affecting our area. Other rivers in Texas are doing the same, extending the damage from Harvey days out.

My family is gathering clothes and items to donate for hurricane and flood victims, but we wish we could do more. Below are some links if you are also looking for ways to help.

redcross.org

salvationarmyusa.org

Stay safe, readers!

 

Read more from Tamara Hartl!

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