These are letters to Jack, my son, and my daughter, Audrey. You have given me the gift of motherhood. This is just a little gift back. I want to share my experiences with you of your childhood from my perspective of watching you grow - of being your Mom.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The Big Power Outage of 2006

7-25-06

Jack,

You lived through the great Power outage of 2006! What a wild week this past week was!

Last Wednesday night, July 19th, in the evening - you and I were at home. We had eaten dinner and we were playing around on the first floor. I had just put the dogs outside and we were just getting ready to head upstairs when suddenly winds started to pick up. The front door blew open. I didn't think anything of it really because it just seemed like it was windy, but I could hear the dogs at the back door and they seemed anxious so I let them in. The wind was really picking up now and so I scooped you up and we were fixing a cup of milk for you when we heard a crash. We hurried out to the front porch in time to see that the wind had shattered a window on the front porch and the storm had gotten significantly worse. I locked the inside door, too, and turned around when the transformer across the street exploded. There were sparks and I jumped backwards. You grabbed onto me tightly and started to make anxious little worried wimpers. I was scared, too. I called Erin and she told me that the tree on the side of the house had blown off and was in the street outside the bay window. Sure enough - there it was. The wind was whipping by now through the broken glass and through the cracks in the doors and making loud whistling noises that were scaring you, so we went to the basement and closed the door to wait out the worst of the storm. The electricity had gone out by this time and the basement is always hot so we were snuggled up in the hot dark basement listening to the loud storm on the other side of the door. You were getting very hot, but I couldn't pull you away from me in order to cool you off because you were so scared and you seemed to be afraid that I was trying to put you down which I would never have done. So, I held you and tried to give you some cold milk to cool you off, but you were too upset to drink.

We waited out the storm and Daddy came home from class and helped clean up some of the trash and debris that was littering our front yard. The electric stayed off for most of the evening, but came on at about 4 AM on Thursday. I went in to work on Thursday morning, but my job was closed down because they didn't have any power. Your Daddy took off from his work and we set to work on cleaning up the yard from the broken branches and debris.

By that afternoon, we were back up and running with all new groceries and we played together and had a wonderful rest of the day.

Through all of this time, there were over 500,000 residents without power in our area. Your Aunt Erin, Uncle Brett and Cal were without power for that whole period as were GG and Great-Grandma Jane. Bethesda (Great-Grandma Jane's nursing home) had generator power, so they were okay. GG and the Shanks went to stay with Grandma and Poppa Dough.

Friday, a second storm blew through the area and we lost power again. We were lucky because the temperature on Friday and Saturday wasn't too high and we were comfortable in our home. We didn't have to leave to stay with anyone else.

Uncle Brett brought home a generator on Friday from work and we moved all of our freezer and refrigerator items from the Shanks, Roses and Wassels together in order to keep them from going bad. By 3:30 on Saturday, we had the power back on for all of us - but even till this moment there are still many without power from that storm. It was a gust storm and it was powerful and scary! There were homes in our area with whole uprooted trees on the houses, but we were very, very lucky.

Just wanted to share with you a little of the excitement from this event before it fades from my memory. Even now, you are still a little jumpy. The dogs scare you when the bark and startle you now and you cry. I think this is left over from the scare of the storm because you were very terrified for the whole length of it and I think this is a trailing effect.

Just know - I'll never let anything happen to you if I can help it. You are safe with your Momma!

Love,

Mommy

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