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On December 11th, our state of Massachusetts was hit with a natural disaster. We had a state of emergency & our homes were with out power, heat, electric, everything. Our children have been out of school since then. The schools are still being used as shelters w/ the Red Cross. There are still thousands w/ out power, shelter & food.
We were the more fortunate ones that didn't lose our homes, although we do have extensive exterior damages to our house & flooding in our basement. We were fortunate to get a small generator that enabled us to have some heat & some luke warm water and one lamp for light at night, but nothing else, no cooking or anything else. Just as is. I like Yankee Candles so the house was lit with lots of those.
Today we have our power, cable, phone & everything restored. When the power of National Grid arrived to our home, I remember just falling & crying & the man just looked at me & said "m'am" & kept repeating it but I just cried & said "thank you, thank you, please help us". Still, there are thousands that are w/ out anything. I have taken hundreds of photos of this mess & I will be posting them once I upload them for those who want to see what we truly have endured & still are having to clean up. They say it will be a while before people will be "back to normal". I have an aunt who lost her home, a tree when through her daughter's bedroom & into her kitchen, she was lucky to get out. Some, were not so lucky.
It was an ice storm that ripped out power lines, poles out of the ground, trees from their roots, cars crashed by giant trees, live power wires, and deaths due to freezing & some from starting their generators in their homes, deadly act in itself. It literally looked like a war zone & something from the south, a tornado w/ ice & snow.
The governor Deval Patrick declared a state of a ER & is still trying to figure out why people are w/ out power & homes. Why people are still w/ out power & are being told that they will be w/ out power until "at least" Jan. 27th, and when people ask "what do we do?" they are being told "go some where else". It's horrible.
We managed to salvage Christmas w/ our family regardless of the mess. I did a lot of crying & a lot of praying. We did a lot of yelling & fighting too. Being in one room w/ over 8 people can really test your flaws & patience. But in the end, you realize how you love everyone so much.
I know that a lot of you are posting pix of presents & great moments that you have experienced w/ your loved ones. I hope that some of you take a second & think of those who have lost & have been w/ out for this past month & are still going w/ out. Those that were not able to give their children presents for Christmas & Santa couldn't come to their homes & those who froze to death & are still in shelters & are still w/ out homes.
For the first time in my life. I realize how much my family means to me, how much I don't care about my new car, my house or anything material. I just look at my kids & smile. I am thankful that we are alive & safe.
I have never been so scared, so sad & so unsure of our future. I truly thought we were going to die in the midst of the storm, the trees coming down on our house, the poles, the cracking, the sounds, I'll never get them out of my head. They will forever be in my head, it's a nightmare. Those days/nights, as my children cried & screamed, especially Teighan from the dark, as we were unable to have a generator for 2 days & the house was probably at 30 to 35 degrees Fahrenheit, my husband & I just sat in a corner w/ our kids & prayed. I looked at him & just thought that this was it. This was our moment when we were going to go. But I humbled myself & thought, at least it was w/ everyone that mattered the most to us. Oh... and if I never eat another granola bar for a meal, it wont be too soon. We ate a lot of granola bars which now I could just vomit by the thought. Thankfully I bought them in bulk. T.T. had cases of his Alimentum Formula so he was set w/ his bottles & didn't go w/ out his meals, I am so lucky for that.
I am thankful to be here today & type this. I am thankful to be alive.
Since my post, it's been noted by our governor that we're waiting for our President G.W.Bush to declare our ice storm a "major disaster" which will lead to immediate/financial assistance. Our MA Gov. has made a request to Pres. Bush to get financial aid to our counties that have been affected by the storm. The fed. government would contribute 75% & the state would pay 25% to help the repairs needed (restoration, reconstruction, debris removal, etc.)
Red Cross is still providing shelter to nearly 3500 people in 29 shelters in Central Mass. since December 12th. Although the newspapers are trying to let people think that all is getting better & that there is only 5-10% left in need of restoring their power, which sounds like a small #, it's not, it's a small # on paper, but we're still talking thousands of people. Which is ridiculous. People are with out power & it's not okay, not at all.
The volunteers are doing their best but they need help, they can only do so much. It's time for someone in a higher position to come to our aid. I am so angry that this story has not reached out to the other states. I've done research on this since I've been had access to my PC (which was yesterday), and to see the lack of info out there, just boggles my mind. It's sad. Yet when there are fires in the hills of California, it's all over Oprah's TV program. I guess because we're not in Hollywood, or our small towns are not in the news all the time, we aren't on the important lists. We're not far from Boston, but I guess it's not close enough to be that important to the media.
Our Governor is appealing to the White House for this ER designation & we're hoping that it gets approved. We need it.