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A FLOOD of Memories

See this mosquito? This is my every day flood reminder. Why? Well, she flew into our house on the night that our neighborhood began to flood and never left. It took me a few days to finally understand that she was dead. Every day I enter my office/guest room and see her stuck to the top of the wall near the window and every day I’m reminded of how the Lord protected us. (Note: I started writing this post a week early. This mosquito has since fell off the wall. I was terribly upset when I noticed that it was no longer there. Had my daughter not been in the room with me at the time, I may have broke down and cried. I had truly come to love that silly little mosquito. It was kind of ironic that this reminder is no longer there. While I will never forget the flood, it’s time to move forward and that’s exactly what Nashville is doing.)

I also have another reminder of the flood. My laptop. My very 1st Mac arrived during the flood. In fact, it almost didn’t get delivered because of it. However, it arrived just in time and it kept me in touch with the rest of the world (via Social Media) throughout the duration. I lovingly named it McWater.

I thought it would be interesting to take a trip down memory lane and write down my most vivid memories of the flood.

I remember….
  • that it rained non-stop for 3 days and that even though our church is no where near a body of water, it flooded first.
  • my hubby barely getting him and his truck off of Miami Drive and that it stalled out in the deep water.
  • taking a walk in our PJs to investigate the retention ponds and making a decision to stay.
  • praying that I wouldn’t be the person sitting on the roof of a flooded house waving a white flag to helicopters flying overhead.
  • two sets of strangers (neighbors) and their cats seeking refuge at our house because their house one street over was flooding. We made beds on the floors upstairs and hoped that we wouldn’t have to swim out the next morning.
  • tip toeing downstairs the next morning and praising the Lord that there was no water in our home. Shortly after that, I noticed that the water was continuing to rise.
  • seeing neighbor Wade come rowing up in a little dingy boat with sandbags and being beyond thrilled to see him.
  • getting a little panicky when the helicopters started flying overhead for real.
  • that my love for social media grew a little bit that day because it kept me better in tune to what was actually going on out there.
  • respectfully declining the officials and their Zodiak boats and choosing to stay over and over and again.
  • checking the water level every 30 minutes and watching it slowly creep higher and higher on the slab of our home and the relief I felt when the water finally stood still and then left a grass stain on the fence as proof that it was receding.
  • confirming that the Cumberland River can crest at 52.1 feet and be in my garage but not in my house.
  • lots of walks around the neighborhood in water up to my thighs as I checked on the homes of my neighbors who couldn’t get back home.
  • seeing a horse stranded at Lock Two Park and learning that he had flowed 14 MILES downstream.
  • that my husband worked tirelessly rowing families to their homes. One night we went to sleep with not one but two boats floating in our front yard tied to the tree.
  • that houses on either side of us had water damage but we didn’t. Houses just 1 street over had 2 feet of water and houses just 1 neighborhood over from us had water up to the roof.
  • that I questioned my choice to stay on about day 4 of being stuck in the house with a 3 year old.
  • the eerie sound of people returning home after it had been so quiet for 5 days and meeting the owner of the random car that had been stashed in front of our house.
  • being on tight water restriction for two weeks and had umpteen loads of laundry to do when it was completely lifted a month later.
  • seeing the piles and piles and piles of debris lined up along the roads.
  • having to present my ID to get into my own neighborhood for weeks.
  • seeing my church come together like never before to support and work along side the 14 families tragically affected and watching my own daughter work her booty off to help a dear family pack up their remaining things. She never complained but still worries about Ms. Katie’s cookie cutters.
  • having emotions that ranged from feeling guilty to praising the Lord to being mad at the world for their seemingly lack of concern.
  • eating sack lunches that were hand-delivered ice cream truck style from the Red Cross and local churches.
  • that it took most families 6 months or even more before they were able to rebuild and return home.
  • that I actually remember SO much more than this.

A lot has changed in a year. This past Saturday night we attended a party to celebrate all that has changed for the better in the last 365 days. It was called Mudstock and I couldn’t be more thrilled for these families. Here’s a quick video of this amazing event. You can also view the full 1-year anniversary article.

Today, I want it to salute all Nashvillians, those who were directly affected and those who volunteered their time and resources to restore what was lost. I’m extremely proud to be a resident of Tennessee. I won’t ever forget the Nashville Flood of 2010 and I will always remember this…. #WeAreNashville

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