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.