As a home organizer, there is no easy answer for getting through hard times. Catastrophes happen and the question becomes, how do you pick yourself up after a loss?
It has been more than 13 years since hurricane Katrina. Being a born and raised in New Orleans, I know the pain that came in with the flood waters that overtook so much of the city. I am very proud of how the people there came together to recover and rebuild the city. It truly has come so far from the devastation that happened 13 years ago that some areas you would never be able to tell that a catastrophe happened. There are those of us, however; who endured incredible loss and whose lives were forever changed by the storm, directly or indirectly.
In August 2005, just two years after we moved to Houston, Hurricane Katrina hit and devastated New Orleans. The morning that the storm hit, we watched the news in horror as the roof was being torn off the Superdome, the waters rising, and bodies floating. My husband and I took care of 28 people and helped them to get situated. We physically had a family of five living with us. I spent several weeks with little food or sleep, surviving on coffee with countless hours on the phone coordinating efforts to get friends back in the city. After one month, the city gave clearance for people to begin returning home.
Debra returned to her home shortly after clearance had been given to come back to the city. It was difficult for her to cope with the devastation and she asked to come live with me, but with all the people I was currently taking care of, I couldn’t handle anyone else.
A few weeks went by and I had planned a trip to go there and visit her, but a week before my trip, Debra was killed in a car accident. The following year is still a blur to me. It was the hardest time of my life and the sorrow that comes with it, I can still feel today. To say that Katrina was a life changing event would be an understatement. I personally saw my childhood home in a devastated condition. I felt the pain that all my friends were feeling as well. And I had lost my best friend in the world.
Getting through ~~
Despite all my pain, I couldn’t cry at the funeral. My emotions were shutting down and I couldn’t process the hurt and sorrow that I felt. It was like the death of my mother all over again and it was yet another memory I locked up in my cluttered closet of brokenness and pain.
As a home organizer, there is no easy answer for getting through hard times like this. Catastrophes happen and the question becomes how do you pick yourself up after a loss? Houston went through the devastation of Hurricane Harvey. The flooding could be compared to Katrina. There is a lot of mess to clean up and put back together. The physical damage can be repaired, but you can not restore the loss of life. I was helped up by friends and especially my family to press on. The loss of Debra was actually a catalyst that began the process of me becoming uncluttered in my messy, broken heart.
If you are experiencing a loss that is hard to recover from contact professional help. I did.
Excerpts from my 2nd book Uncluttered: discovering strength and purpose in the chaos of life.
LisaGiesler, Professional Organizer, Author, Speaker