Post-hurricane life

25 Sep

4:23 pm

I’m here, just three weeks into surviving two Category 5 hurricanes in two weeks. Yep, Hurricanes Irma and Maria hit my part of the world, and it was bad.

I don’t even know what to say except, I’m grateful we had no damage, I’m grateful for my boo who has been busting ass getting us needed supplies, and I’m grateful for my own patience for waiting out our cell towers being marginally restored (thank you, diesel generators) while we wait patiently for our electricity to get turned back on (months in the making, no doubt).

The entire part of the world where I live has been decimated, but that’s not to say that every home is ruined, and every person is beaten down. We are here, surviving, and even thriving–I’ve rediscovered life without Facebook, in-real-life life, staring up at the stars at night from the hammock and truly, yes, truly being able to notice them without the mental and emotional distractions that come with electricity (tv shows, social media posts). I’ve started reading books again. And, I’ve finally started on some long overdue writing projects.

Not once have I thought about drinking; it’s just not what I do anymore. Sure, I’ve felt down and helpless (and even angry at myself for being in a daze and kind of not feeling as “intrepid” a disaster survivor as I guess I had imagined myself to be), but that has never translated into, wine will help or make it feel better. Yes, there are people getting high and drunk around me, and I have to admit, it sort of aggravates me; but I let it go so quickly that I don’t even have time–or want to invest time–to figure out why. It’s not important, and emotions are strong these days. Anyway, as I re-read some of my old blog posts, I realize just how grateful I should be that I don’t think about drinking in my darkest (literally) hour. I did SO much of that during my first year–but, that was 5 years ago, a long time ago. I’ve moved on, but maybe it’s going to take a hurricane (or two) to help me embody that reality by actually, forcing me to physically move (on)!

With military planes, three weeks later, still buzzing back and forth over the water outside, and relief helicopters transporting people to and fro; living out of coolers and dealing with an inordinate amount of mosquitoes; working from my deck off a hotspot connection in the gusting winds–a week after Maria, and the winds, man, the freaking winds!–it’s all taking time, focus, patience, diligence, and perseverance. I have those, though, and I’m grateful for that, too.

I promise to write more when things start to settle down…  Huge hugs to all just starting to get sober. Keep NOT drinking when you really, really want to drink, and that’s half the battle.


9 Responses to “Post-hurricane life”

  1. Sheila September 25, 2017 at 7:45 pm #

    Oh I am so sorry you had to live through that I can’t imagine! I will pray for you.

  2. mishedup September 25, 2017 at 9:50 pm #

    Oh Honey!!

    I knew you lived some island somewhere,,,you’ve dropped those hints, but I had no idea you were in line of all this destruction. I ‘m so terribly sorry, yet so happy that you’re ok.
    Maybe you don’t think you are intrepid, but I will disagree…just the not drinking part makes you a hero in my eyes!

    Hang in…send out a signal when you can. And this seems like an incredible writing project…..


  3. furtheron September 26, 2017 at 7:43 am #

    “Intuitive handle situations which used to baffle us”

    Often for me that’s the little things in life – then it’s the huge huge things that the “civilians” out there would say “Well you deserve a drink after that”.

    Sending you lots of hope for things to get sorted and back some new normal as soon as they can. I watched from afar those storms and just boggled at the power nature can unleash against us to just show us how puny and pointless we are on this planet really in the grand scheme.

  4. soberinvegas September 26, 2017 at 12:35 pm #

    so glad you are safe, and sending good thoughts to those around you who are rebuilding ❤

  5. carrieonsober September 26, 2017 at 4:51 pm #

    Sending you best wishes for the return of normality whatever that may be.
    It’s wonderful that you don’t even think to drink in extreme situations, look how far you have come!
    I’m so relieved to hear that you’re ok and getting the best of the self care that you can out of the forced isolation of the situation you’re in
    Look after yourself and look forward to reading your book one day 😘

  6. thedanny1972 September 26, 2017 at 5:11 pm #

    it is an awesome thing to be so strong in your sobriety that you can go through such turmoil and still not want to drink. That says a lot about the quality of your sobriety.

  7. freefallingintoasoberlife September 27, 2017 at 9:24 am #

    I lived on a Caribbean Island for several years. The first time I was faced with an approaching hurricane I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I went and visited with another Gringa that lived on the island. She was originally from Lake Charles, Louisiana and as she was much older than me, had e periencef quite a few hurricanes in her time. She asked me if I knew the FIRST thing to do when a hurricane was coming? No I answered- very rapt and waiting for my lesson. “Make ice because you’ll drink a lot!” The fact that you didn’t is huge! And I know, it’s the sound of the wind that’s really hard to get out of your head! So glad you’re ok.

  8. StephenD September 27, 2017 at 2:06 pm #

    Reason (ha) to drink? Can’t think of one. The distant past, it was mere fun. Recent years, why I did it, to the point of death (nearly), I find no reason. So, hurricanes? Here in Florida it was always another excuse, like say … a Thursday.
    Anyhow (short on time), glad we did so well with Irma despite the losses. 40+ years of Florida hurricanes is wearing on me. All of which bring sobering thoughts, not ‘reasons’ to buy a bottle and what …?
    All the best, love

  9. Jen October 11, 2017 at 4:10 pm #

    I can totally see both sides – the resolve to NOT drink and handle things clearly and with clarity – of course I can ALSO see the side that wants to stay in bed and grab a bottle and wake up when it’s all over. That’d be my dilemma! You’re made of awesome, girl! YOU GOT THIS. Your resolve (in a bonafide disaster) is so inspiring.

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