Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Anniversary of Destruction, My Life before Autism

 It's been awhile since I have blogged, and since I am putting off housework, why not now??
7 years ago today the Hubs and I were living in Mobile Alabama. Hurricane Katrina was upon us. You see, we evacuated for hurricane Dennis. Since driving home was cheaper and easier than finding a hotel during a hurricane, thats what we did. We made it to Virginia and work called me. It was down graded to a tropical storm, come home. So being the wet behind the ears southerners we were, when Katrina was coming, we stocked up on supplies and prepared to weather the storm. SCARY!!!!!!!!
 I will never forget that day and the days following. My life changed drastically, though for the better. I went from being a tattoo artist, working 60-70 hours a week, to being a house wife, on bed rest, because I was carrying my high risk miracle! You guessed it! Liam was made during the hurricane. Hubs jokes, "what else is there to do with no power!" Very true! I made his son a stocking by candlelite and hubs and a friend played chess while we listened to the wind and the goings on with a NOAA radio. After the hurricane passed us, our friend made us go outside. Never in my life have I seen a sky so clear, so full of stars, and so beautiful....then I heard gun shots ring out and I high tailed my arse back inside!
 The looting had begun. The devastation was mind boggling and heart wrenching. The next morning we went with friends to tour the area. We were so lucky. Our complex sustained minimal damage. Loss of shingles, a few trees down, the pool was wasted (BOOOOOO). But we we LUCKY!!! Just 15 minutes from us homes were destroyed, the historic battleship was moved, yes a whole battleship was moved by the force of the water. The water was so high there was sea weed on the power lines. The lines at the gas stations were building. (Matter of fact, we went a week without being able to get gas. We were rolling on fumes, and lucked out and only had to wait 45 minutes for gas.) The images I saw personally were heart breaking, but I wasn't prepared for what was to come on the news. You see, what we saw on the news, and what you saw on the news was so different. You saw damage, flooding, people in Louisiana saying they lost their family. What we saw was the bridge going out of Louisiana covered with people. Injured people. Mothers with infants screaming for milk because mom was so dehydrated she couldn't produce. Many on this bridge were dead and/or dying. What came next is something I will NEVER forget. A plane flew over. I thought, they thought, they were going to drop water to these poor people. I was so wrong...... Instead, they dropped Lye. You read that right! They dropped Lye on the dying, on the mothers, on the babies. They dropped Lye to control the smell of the dead and decaying. They dropped it on LIVE people! My heart couldn't take anymore sadness, so the tv stayed off for days.

A glimpse of what we saw...

so many pics like this surfaced on the news...
New Orleans Super Dome...Do you know why they put these people here?? You heard it was to save them from rising water. What you didn't hear is they evacuate the old, the disabled and the poor here. They knew the Dome wouldn't sustain the hurricane, and they didn't have time to get them all out. They put them here as a mass grave of sorts.....

So many streets around looked like this.
This may not seem like much, but winds and water were able to tip the USS Alabama a few degrees. A few degrees is ALOT when you take into account how much this ship weighs.
Downtown Mobile during Katrina (15 mins from where we lived)

Bayou La Batre Louisiana. Hubs did a lot of work here after Katrina.

Dauphin Island (30 minutes from us)  
Pascagoula Beach (30 mins from us) all that was left was their roof.

I have no words

prepared to shoot looters. see the poor kid in the back ground, makes me want to cry!

Evacuees on the I 10 Bridge

Prisoners on the I 10, this is the same bridge they dumped Lye on..

So I realize, 7 years later, that I will NEVER forget how I felt during and after Hurricane Katrina. In  the midst of devastation and sadness, God gave me a miracle. I was one of the lucky ones. I still mourn and think about the lives lost. I still see the images in my mind as if it were yesterday. I still pray that those who were separated from their loved ones have been reunited.  We moved home just a few months after the hurricane. Food was scarce, gas was scarce. Though hubs had a job, getting paid was a waiting game. They were repairing homes so people could move in and move on, but waiting for FEMA to pay the contractors was like pulling teeth. Yet, there were convicts in jail getting their checks. The government really disappointed me in their actions of the aftermath, but sadly it was of no surprise.

My Life BEFORE Autism
My friend and I in front of the tattoo shop. 
Before the Hurricane, and my miracle (I looked so young, and so thin :( ....)
May 2005

My Life AFTER Autism
Me and my miracle now
I wouldn't change a thing <3
October 2011

My advice, NEVER take anything for granted, it could be gone in a flash. Be thankful for what you have, and who you have in your life. Tell them you love them, EVERY DAY!


  1. Powerful! Amazing out of great tragedy such beauty is born! Thank you for sharing.

  2. Amazing and gut wrenching. I have anxiety issues, so, even though I'm all the way up in Wisconsin, I never could stand to watch me news coverage. I wish there had been something I could have been involved in. <3 hearts to you and Liam

  3. well written and disturbing. Being all the way in UK at the time ( now in Australia) we were told the government were not handling is as best they could but not to this extreme. A way a country reacts after a tragedy like this is a sad reality of the world we live in now. I don't think Australia or the UK would hold up much better and I know our governments would make massive mistake.

  4. Thank you all for your kind words :)