The Words

I wish I could find the words to tell you how scared I am for my home right now. Every few minutes brings a new wave of panic and fear. I get distracted every once in a while by normal life, and then, as if a tidal wave in itself, the fear crashes over my life, breaches my emotional levees and floods my heart.

I wish I could find the words to describe what it feels like to watch and wait. I have 10,000 internet pages of hurricane forecasts that I stalk hourly. I have news sources and stories and reports. But I still don’t know anything. I still don’t know what tomorrow will bring.

I wish I could find the words to tell you how much that city means to me. There just aren’t adjectives to describe the way it has welcomed me and made me feel like I belong there, even though I was born 2000 miles away. The job I don’t even like has given me friends, a home base and a place to go for support. The school I spend countless hours studying for has given me an education and a future. I can’t find the words to tell you how my heart might be ripped from my chest if our city floods and those places never open again.

I wish I could find the words to tell you how scared I am for my husband. For all the hard work he has put in to his school only to face such uncertainty with just 7 months to go. For how he can handle another serious disruption of his life, his schooling, his safety. I’m scared for what it does to him and how he struggles to rally from it. For the fact that he has lost a home to an earthquake, was forced out of a new home 3 weeks after moving there by Katrina and now is sitting in Nashville, willing the news to make it stop. Wishing he could pretend it wasn’t happening at all.

I wish I could find the words to tell you how much I wonder what might happen if our city floods. Where will all those people go? Who can afford to rebuild their lives a second time? How can anyone be expected to continue to pick up the pieces again? And where will we go? Where will be live? Where will I work? How will Slappy finish school?

I wish I could find the words to tell you how much I pray that tomorrow afternoon I’ll be here telling you how my city survived. And I wish even more that I believed that was a possibility, let alone a probability.

I wish I could find the words to tell you how much I need everything to be okay.

I wish I could find the words that would save my city, my home, my future.

13 Responses to “The Words”

  • varietyisthespice:

    Your thoughts reflect mine exactly. The waiting and the fear are killing me…


  • Cathy in MI:

    Wow, I can’t imagine at all what you are going though. Our thoughts are with you and everyone who had to evacuate…


  • Ness:

    The one thing that lets me know that you and Slappy will handle whatever happens, God forbid, is the number of times each of you have been struck down and came back even stronger. All the challenges Slappy has faced, all the health issues you have faced, the robbery that happened during your honeymoon. I have been glued to the television all day because I worry with and for you and am concerned for you and your city and its people. Remember that no matter what, you and Slappy have each other and together you will make it through because your love for each other is stronger than anything. I will keep praying.


  • Oh, The Joys:

    As the Quakers say, I’m holding you and the people of NOLA in the light.


  • melissa:

    I can’t imagine having to go through anything like what you are going through now. My thoughts and most especially my prayers are with you and the others in harm’s way.


  • Lauren:

    I’m a frequent reader of your blog but haven’t commented in a long time – just wanted to let you know that you and Slappy are in my thoughts and prayers.

    Also, I’m a teacher in NC, and there are a number of good medical schools here. If, God forbid, the two of you have to relocate (and I’m crossing every cross-able appendage that that won’t be the case), please feel free to e-mail me at I know of a lot of schools still in need of teachers and would be more than happy to help however I can. In the meantime, I’m hoping with everything I’ve got that Gustav passes NOLA by and that you and Slappy will be home where you belong soon.


  • Anonymous:

    I will be up all night and morning watching with you and praying just the same. My brother in law went to med school at LSU-NO so we have fond memories of the city as well. Stay safe.
    Claire in Tx


  • Becs:

    I have been thinking of you for the past several days. I’m glad you and Slappy are safe. Everybody knows what home means, even if we come to it later in life than we hoped. We know it when we see it. We know it when we’ve arrived, how we just sort of meld the place into us. I hope your home emerges much as you left it.


  • katy:

    I hope everything is ok in your home. I know it has to be horrible to be so far away and not knowing what is happening. I don’t know what part of New Orleans you live in so as I watch tv I keep thinking….I hope thats not where she lives….I hope she lives far away that….


  • Flea:

    I’ve been asleep all day, but I’m hoping the news is good. For your sake and Slappy’s.


  • LilSass:

    Although I am new to this site, your post really, really struck a cord with me. I just finished re-reading all my old posts about your city and I am just sick with it all.

    Thank you for sharing how you feel. Being this emotionally raw is difficult to feel, and more difficult to process. Thank you for sharing your journey with us.


  • Mrs. Flinger:

    I’ve been following everything and hoping the best news possible for your and yours. Waiting for an update. XO


  • Becky:

    Hoping for the best of news.

    I first visited NOLA in 05 just two months before Katrina wiped out so much! We loved it there, and were glad we visited.

    I have seen very little news coverage, so I am hoping that it has not turned out to be as bad as was suspected.

    Good luck!

    The Maid


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I'm Katie, a 30-year-old, wife, mom, former teacher-turned PT, who also had brain surgery in November of 2007. This blog chronicles my daily life, from mundane to crazy, often with far too much detail. Sit down, get comfortable and stay for a while.
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