Hello, Friends. One of the best parts of blogging is being able to share the big things and the little things that happen in my life. If you read my post yesterday then you know I am eternally grateful to the AMAZING firefighters who saved my house and continue to put their lives on the line battling the Waldo Canyon Fire in the mountains surrounding Colorado Springs. I was evacuated from my house for a week. When I came home, the phrase "there's no place like home" had a special meaning that I can't even put into words. At many points during the past week I had a sick feeling in my gut that my house was on the verge of being gobbled up by the fire. Today, I feel calmer because I am one of the fortunate ones, my house has only minor damage. At the same time, my heart aches for the 346 families that lost their homes and the two people who perished in the terrible fire.
No one can ever be prepared for a natural disaster. I thought I could be. I even wrote a post about getting your pets ready for an evac. In theory I could be prepared, but when the reverse 911 call comes telling you to LEAVE NOW you don't think in a logical checklist manner. How can you ever decide what to to put in your car because only so much can be carried to safety with you. As you hear the clock ticking in your head reminding you to leave ASAP, all you really can do is focus on keeping the essentials—the living things—safe. I still think it was a miracle—with lots of help from neighbors helping each other—that thousands of people in the fire zone were able to leave safely.
When I sat down at my computer to write today's post I didn't know how to begin because I was so emotional about everything. Even noticing that I had let the dog water bowl go empty brought me to tears. I was feeling extremely sad and grateful and even guilty for feeling fortunate—all at the same time. My favorite place in the world now has emotional and physical burn scars from a fire that today is still sending flames into the sky from hot spots in the foothills above my home.
Then I remembered something Holly Becker said in her Blogging Your Way 2.0 class: "See the good in your self." See the good? Is that possible? All I can see is trouble. Images of fire rolling down the mountain still make me shake. I can even smell trouble. I open and shut the front door quickly so I don't let too much of the campfire stench into my home.
After a very long week watching the wildfire spread, I feel guilty when something good makes me smile again. It's human nature to feel defeated when we focus on the scars from our struggles or the what we percieve to be flaws in our lives. Or sometimes, we try to sweep those sad feelings under the rug so we don't have to deal with them. Here is what I know: Feeling paralyzed by the problems that develop in life is one part of the healing process. But don't drop everything and give up. I probably will always feel fear build inside me when I look at the blackened earth and skeleton trees in my neighborhood or at the homes reduced to rubble by a ferocious fire. At the same time, I need to remind myself that the good in my self will not evaporate when a disaster strikes. I can still see the good in my community because together we will rebuild and even make the area safer.
I will probably write about that rebuilding experience because that's the kind of sharing bloggers do. I'm sending (((HUGS))) to all my friends at BYW2 for their kind words of support—bloggers are really the sweetest people on the planet!
Before I sign off for the day, I have a favor to ask. If you can do one thing for me, the next time you see a firefighter thank him or her for all they do. And please keep these brave people in your prayers.
Note about the class: For the past four weeks I have been absolutely loving a very special class called Blogging Your Way 2.0 with the awesome design/decor guru and inspirational teacher Holly Becker (decor8) and her talented friends Jeanette Lunde (3 BY FRYD e-magazine), Nicole Balch (Making it Lovely), Katrina Tan (Pugly Pixel) and Thorsten Becker (Alternate:Words) — plus all my new blogging friends taking the e-class with me. (If you want to hear more about Holly's classes, check out her newsletter here.)
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