It's strange. No one was prepared for it. When it hit, my entire family was asleep, and my Mom just barely woke up in time to save my sister. They got through the door, and the second they did, the house started caving in around them.
I was in Damascus at Courtney's, and we were standing outside on her front porch, watching it lightning off in the distance and smoking cigarettes. It wasn't even raining, and so when my sister called me crying, saying the house was gone, it was just gone, we don't have a house, Kelly, we don't have a house-- I just. I didn't understand. My aunt lives just a few miles away, and I woke her up when I called to make sure they were safe, but the storm didn't hit there. I tried to tell her what happened, and she said, "What?" like she didn't believe me. I don't blame her. I still don't believe it.
Just a few days before, I was going through old Photobuckets, and I found these photos that I took of my house when I was in high school. I remember thinking at the time, "I'm going to want to remember what it looks like one day." I'm obsessively nostalgic that way, but it's still odd that I would think that. Now I'm just really glad that I did.
I still haven't been to the house, mostly because the town is like a warzone, and every entryway is blocked by police. I've seen it from the interstate, though, and my aunt took pictures which I'll post now.
This photo was taken from pretty much the same angle. That room jutting out closest to the camera in the first photos? It's gone. Like it was never there. That was the room my sister was in when the tornado hit, the room my Mom just barely got her out of.
That pile of rubble is the trailer next door that my grandmother lived in when I was growing up, where I spent every summer, where we ate breakfast before school while Mom was at work, where she put us on the bus.
The back deck and what's left of the dining room. (When I was little, I used to call it "The Diamond Room" and thought it was called that because it was for fancy dinners.)
I don't know. I just feel-- empty. That is my whole fucking life, guys. Every moment of my childhood and well into adulthood is pretty much right fucking there, and now it's just gone. The claims adjuster seems to think the entire house will have to be demolished, and now my family has no home.
I just feel so helpless.
Anyway, Michael and I still don't have power at our house, so I will not be around much. I'm at the college right now yoinking power and WiFi before work. We have beer and Mexican Jesus candles, though, so I guess we'll be okay.
I'm just gonna state for the record here that I am so, so thankful that my family is okay. Some people on our street weren't so lucky. Please look around right now and be thankful for everything that you have, guys. That's all I ask.