Sunday, February 28, 2010

Tsunami Relief

First I'd like to ask everyone reading this post to take a moment and pray for the victims of the 8.8 earthquake in Chile and continue to pray for those in Haiti.

You have NOOOOO idea how relieved I am that I'm actually able to write this post in the comfort of my own home.

It still feels SOOOO surreal to me that there was an actual tsunami warning here in Hawaii and that there was a very real possibility of us getting a tsunami.

I just remember waking up to a phone call from a friend of mine around 5:50 am telling me that I need to wake up, get gas, food and water because there's a tsunami scheduled to hit at 11 am. My eyes were still closed but as soon as I heard tsunami they popped open, my heart started to beat SUPER fast. I calmly got out of the bed so I wouldn't make any noise to wake up the baby or the dog. I turned on the news and saw that this was in fact real.

I remember I kept saying, "Oh my God, Oh my God, Oh my God." I got off the phone and started calling a few of my other friends to make sure they knew. I then jumped in the shower to get ready to get some gas. Luckily I had just purchased a ton of non perishable foods the day before so I didn't need to worry about juggling all 3 kids in a grocery store all by myself. Oh yea did I mention I'm still ALL BY MYSELF?!? Hubby's in Cali on training AND my entire house in currently sick with a cold so I was trying to get myself together while blowing my nose quietly and trying to smother my coughs.

Finally, I got dressed, grabbed the boys and headed to the gas station. The line was SUPER LONG. Luckily the gas station is only about a mile away from my house and since it was on base, I was pretty sure it would move quickly since military folks know how to move fast in an emergency. I was happy I was right. After grabbing gas I headed home, fed the kids breakfast and started packing up food, water and clothes to go to my friend's house who happens to live on higher ground and who was happy to take me and my tribe in. :)

Before leaving, I had to make sure I bathed the dog, fill the bath tubs and sinks with water since they planned on turning off the water supply and I had to shut the power to the house down so I wouldn't get electrocuted if I had to come back to a flooded house. Whew! I'm getting tired just having to write all this, imagine having to actually do all of it. Did I mention I was sick? I mean aching body, runny nose, headache, cough and sniffles sick? UGH!!!

So I got to my friend's house and got the kids squared away and began to watch the news waiting and waiting and waiting. During this whole "disaster waiting to happen" calls to and from my cell phone was virtually impossible. Luckily texting was working just fine. My family and friends were freaking out more than I was but I was still scared as heck.

So the moment of truth comes and we're waiting and waiting and waiting and NOTHING. I AM SOOOOO RELIEVED!!!! OMG I was SOOOOO happy that nothing happened.

One of my biggest fears in life is to die via drowning and even though we were on high ground I really didn't want to have to deal with seeing ANY type of destruction or knowing that ANYONE got hurt or lost their lives. I kept thinking of all the homeless people (unfortunately there are A LOT) here in Hawaii who actually reside on the beaches. I wondered what was going to happen to them. I kept thinking about the older people and how they were being helped. I honestly didn't want to have to think about the possible devastation this tsunami would've caused. Late last year Samoa experienced a deadly tsunami and people here in Hawaii were devastated because they had a lot of family members there so this would've been truly devastating to deal with.

I definitely learned that adrenaline is a BEAST because I have no idea how I did ALL of what I did and didn't pass out at the end of it. I'm extremely proud of my children for stepping up and helping out during the packing up and unpacking stages and also remaining extremely calm despite knowing what almost was. My boys are so very brave and sweet. I'm a proud mama. :)

I'm also VERY proud of the way Hawaii react to this whole drama. I'm so thankful for the news reports and the way everyone pulled together as a whole community to help each other out. Despite having to deal with the long lines at the gas stations and grocery stores, everyone was calm and respectful and very helpful and sweet to each other.

I'm writing this post not only to express my relief but to also express my gratitude to everyone who prayed vigilantly, sent me a text, email or tried calling to check up on us. Your prayers and well wishes worked [Big time] and for that I am eternally grateful. Even though I don't know you guys personally, I felt the love and concern from all of you and I truly thank you all for that.

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