In the wake of Hurricane Matthew, we are left with a myriad of emotions. We are told to be thankful for what we still have, but for some the losses will be too immense to measure. It is not just the monetary but also the emotional value of our homes and community. They are our safe havens, our anchor in the storm of life. What happens when our home has been destroyed? It can leave us feeling vulnerable, lost and violated in the most desperate of ways. Shattered into a million pieces. Looking for a way to rebuild our lives and get back to “normal” life. But what if that is not the purpose? Perhaps the purpose is not to resume our “normal” living, and instead to rebuild ourselves into a more beautiful version of what we were before the storm.
I believe it’s events like this in life that give us the opportunity to take pause and consider what is truly important to us. For me it was learning the value of the relationships in my life. Not only those of my immediate family, but those of my extended network. It was essential to surviving this hurricane. The support of our community is not only what helped us get through it, it is also helping us rebuild and find our “rhythm” again.
We had an opportunity to show our true selves throughout this process. I am eternally grateful for the way this community is coming together to support one another. I have heard multiple stories of people helping one another through this clean-up process. As we move forward from the storm and continue to heal, my hope is that it continues to bring us closer together as a community. It is when we are unified that we are at our strongest. This is when we can survive any storm that may come our way. We will have stories to share for years about the fall of 2016, when we were all so personally affected by Matthew. My hope is that we can make those stories about the beauty that can arise out of a storm.