after the fire

It's been a little over a week since losing our home to a fire. My emotions are still everywhere.
  1. The next morning I saw the damage for the first time in the daylight
    My mom warned me as we turned the corner. All I could do was sob. I went around back and looked up to where my room should have been. All I saw was sky. Seeing our life reduced to rubble was gutting.
  2. The only thing I had on me when we escaped was my phone
    There are things we all wish we could have grabbed, but those thoughts go out the window when panic strikes and you have to run.
  3. I hate seeing my parents so helpless and defeated
    I can't put into words how painful it is to see them this way.
  4. Some things just have to wait
    I moved home last summer after my life in NYC was ripped out from under me and my health took a nosedive. I was in the middle of trying to get healthy & rebuild my life as an adult, but now that is on hold.
  5. People call, visit, and drive long distances just to say hi and make sure you're alright.
    My uncle drove down the next day after he finished work to climb through the rubble and help look for my cat. My great aunt spent four hours in the car to bring us dinner.
  6. All three cats have been found!
    My cat, Matilda, was the last one to be found. She was pulled out of the basement after surviving the fire and a terrible thunderstorm the night after. She's doing well.
  7. Pets feel it too
    They need extra love and attention. Our dogs miss their big yard and are bothered by living in such a small space. One of our three cats doesn't come out from under the bed much.
  8. We didn't have any copies of identification or important documents in a safe deposit box
    If you haven't done this, do it now. It'll save you a world of trouble.
  9. We miss the important things
    My mom's wedding ring, our pictures, my dad's army medals, the trunk my great great grandmother brought over when she moved to America from Scotland.
  10. And the not so important things
    Someone told me it's okay to mourn my things. It's healthy and part of the process.
  11. People have been so incredibly kind and generous
    It's overwhelming and we are so grateful. Strangers, neighbors, family members, friends, coworkers, doctors, our church. We are very fortunate to be surrounded by so much support.
  12. We're struggling with guilt
    People want to donate. My parents lived comfortably and had a beautiful home. My dad is lucky enough to run a successful business he can step away from. My mom can take whatever time away from work that she needs. They have insurance and are already looking into rebuilding the house. Even though losing our home and 30 years of memories has been absolutely heart wrenching, we are lucky enough to not be worrying about money right now. There are many who aren't as fortunate.
  13. If you want to donate or help
    Please, please give to the Red Cross. When we had nothing but the clothes on our backs the next morning, they were at our house first thing. We didn't even call, they were just there.
  14. The people of Louisiana have been on my mind
    It breaks my heart. Thousands of them have lost everything, and that community needs our help right now. Being displaced is physically and emotionally exhausting, please help make their journey a bit easier. They are in shelters living minute to minute. Please look into local and national emergency relief organizations and give to them.
  15. I keep telling myself it could be worse
    One of us could have been burned or killed, a pet could have died. We could be facing a horrible financial future. But I still find myself crying out nowhere and feel like an enormous part of me is just gone.
  16. Thank you, li.st ❤️
    For your support, love, and compassion. It means the world to me. So grateful to have this community to lean on. Also, thank you @k8mcgarry for asking about donations. And @sadieee26 for being right up the road & offering your help & prayers. 💗💗💗