As I’m sure you have heard, Texas recently went through a disaster of epic proportions. I have lived in Texas 26 of my 28 years, and in Houston for the vast majority of those years. As someone extremely familiar with the area it is mind boggling to me to comprehend the area this storm impacted. To give one small reference, one of my cousins flooded in Meyerland which is located on the South East side of Houston. When she called to tell us she flooded my Husband was helping clean up flooded houses in our neighborhood, 55 miles away.
This is just a small reference, as the damage far exceeded our family circle, but it does give some idea of how large of an area was impacted. It was heartbreaking, to say the least, to sit at home and watch so many people lose everything. All major roads were blocked and we had no boat, so outside of our immediate neighbors, there was little we could do to help.
But in the middle of the darkness light burst through, as it always does. People jumped, and I mean literally jumped, into action. Throwing all worry of themselves aside, people started doing whatever they could to help a neighbor or total stranger for that matter. Just a week before I was only hearing talk of how our country has never been more divided, then six days later, I saw Americans put their own safety aside to do whatever they could. So do not tell me this country is divided. Yes, we may have different opinions, but is that not what we were founded on? What I saw in that storm was that yes we all may have different opinions and beliefs, but when it comes down to it we are all Americans and we will do whatever it takes to be there for each other.
So as tragic as it was, I don’t want to forget. I don’t want to ever go back to feeling that divided. I want to hold on to the images of lines of volunteers wrapping around buildings to help. I want to remind people all the time that most shelters had twice as many volunteers as evacuees. Although I am a fierce Texan and know the people here are one of a kind, I do believe this spirit exists all over this great nation.
The clean up will go on for months, and the hurt for so many families will long out live the cleanup. If you can find any way to help please do. But the smallest act I believe would make the greatest difference, love your neighbor. We are one America.