Monday, September 05, 2005

Prayers were answered

I don't know where exactly to begin. I guess that I should start by saying that my immediate family is safe and accounted for. We did stay in Slidell and rode out the storm. Thankfully, we had a place to ride it out that was on high ground and relatively safe. We did have a tree limb go through the ceiling about the fireplace, but compared to the other houses in the neighborhood, we were lucky. Also, compared to the rest of Slidell, we were lucky.

If you are a regular reader of mine you know that my mom and stepdad lived on Lake Pontchartrain. I am forever grateful that they rode out the storm with us, although staying at their home was never an option. Their home was absolutely destroyed. They had a three story home made of I-beams and bullet-proof glass (it was built by a local mobster after Camille - a story for another day). Of those three floors, only the third remained unscathed. The bottom floor was completely gone and 3/4 of the second was as well. There were a few possessions that they really were mourning, like my grandmother's suitcase full of pictures, my dad's electric train given to him by his grandfather, my porcelain dolls, etc. Unbelievably, even though they were on the second floor, they were in the one bedroom that only got a small amount of water damage and they were up high enough to be saved. See, even in such tragedy, I still believe in miracles. The third floor was my parent's bedroom. So, they do have their clothes and bedroom furniture. Also my mom was able to get to her kitchen and salvage her pots and pan and dishes. She was one of the few lucky ones in her neighborhood. Most of her neighbors have no house, only a foundation.

Most of my dad's family, however, lived in New Orleans. At least 12 families within my family are homeless and half of those I have no way of knowing if they got out. Telephone service, as I'm sure you can imagine, does not exist. No one has heard from those that we know nothing of. All we are left to do is register with the Red Cross, wait and pray. I worry about what my family will do with their lives. I know not where they will go. I really fear for my 87 year old grandmother. She lost everything and I can't imagine starting over at that point in your life.

What really makes me sick is in the midst of all this devestation, there are people who use this issue for political grandstanding and sickening self-promotion. The last thing that the people of New Orleans needs to hear is that their rescuers don't care about them. What kind of sick mind games are they playing on these people. They need home and comfort, not more hatred and loathing.

I thank you all for your concerns and prayers. Now that I am able to have access to a computer, I will be writing more often. Please check back. Thank you so much. YOur kindness has soothed this very heavy heart. Time to go register with FEMA.