Title: Survivors

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An article about our stress caused by nature,how we dealt with it,and how our relationships in our family are as strong as ever.


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On January 12th our community was hit with a devastating ice storm. My family, along with families in the entire region of Southwest Missouri struggled to survive.

Most were without electricity for five to 10 days….some longer than that. Many were also without water due to wells that needed electricity to operate. This week my family is finally back to some degree of normal. We and many other in this area are truly survivors.

I’ve been talking and listening to others this week and learning how they coped with their situation. Some had fireplaces, others used Kerosene heaters and some were fortunate enough to find and purchase a generator. There were some who died as a result of fumes.

We have a wood burning fireplace which we hadn’t used for about three years. We didn’t even have any wood for it. On the first day, I went to one of my neighbors and begged for wood. He brought us a wheelbarrow full. Before we used all of that, we were finally able to locate some for sale and paid $70 a day for wood which was very large and also green. My son worked hard splitting the wood each day.

We put blankets over the windows and doorways so that we could contain the heat in our living room. The three of us spent six days together in that small space. It was entirely too much togetherness. I wondered several times if our relationships would survive.

We lost most of our food which thawed and had to be thrown out due to the inability to cook much on the fire. Limbs coated with ice fell frequently sounding almost like fireworks being set off. One limb made a hole in our roof. Another tore down our patio cover. Our phone with our only answering machine was ruined due to power surges. I wondered if we would survive the expenses.

All of our trees are damaged severely. The ground is covered with branches. We’ve already had one large shade tree removed. It wouldn’t have survived. There are others in our yard that probably won’t survive either.

I am happy to say that in spite of the anxiety, depression, stress and lack of modern conveniences, my family has survived. I hope we never have to go through another week like that one was.

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