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blown away

today the sun shone for about a half hour and i captured these shots of the recent storm's aftermath... the flooded tidal marsh, and two huge uprooted trees. we've had a couple of wild weather days, and just got back into our home today as our heat and electricity were finally restored. a huge storm blew through this area on thursday evening and wreaked havok with wind gusts tandem to a catagory 2 hurricane.

around 11pm thursday, i woke up to screaming winds and two exterior doors that were banging and smashing into one another in the front of our house. the whole house was shaking and the windows were rattling and bowing unnaturally. for a little while i was terrified, and wondering if we should take cover.

i have this crazy phobia of tornados. even though i have never seen one and live in an area where they are extremely unlikely to occur, the notion that there could be one scares the heck out of me. when i am stressed about something, i dream about tornados.

so in the moment our power went out (shortly after i awoke during the height of the storm), and the baby started crying after waking up to darkness and howling winds, i thought this is it -a tornado is coming! i knew it was an overreaction. phobias are completely irrational by definition. but i was scared. it was scary weather after all.

so in a flash, i thought about what to grab. i know you all have been posed this hypothetical question of what one thing would you save if your house caught on fire.... my first reaction was my computer, and than i realized how completely rediculous this was. then i thought about the hope chest and all the family photos that are stashed there, and then all the momentos and treasures of our past.

then in the next instant as i settled back into the reality that there, of course, would be no tornado the clarity of what i wanted most to save came to me in that second... nothing. there was nothing precious enough that i wanted to risk seconds of my family's safety to try to grab. i just wanted to be sure we were all safe. the kids, my husband, myself and the dog. maybe i would run and get the goldfish and my cell phone.

so as i sat in the candlelight rocking the baby back to sleep i thought about this. i guess i was a little surprised. ever since i can remember i have always been a collector of sentimentality, saving bits of this and pieces of that, things that seemed so important to hold on to forever. yes, most of it is precious and i would be heartbroken to lose those most prized posessions, but that was just it... they are all only things. and in that moment of choosing, the fact that all i wanted was my my family was very validating and freeing. i know what i could not live without.