It’s hard to believe that so much could happen in one night. Just a few hours. It can be safely assumed that the feelings of uncertainty, fear, and shock still resonate within us to this day…two years later. Superstorm Sandy ravaged the Jersey Shore and some of us are just now picking up the pieces.
I was lucky enough to only have one part of my house destroyed. Our basement was full to the ceiling and our kitchen was underwater. Everything in our garage was lost. Before seeing the extent of the damage in our area, my first thought was that we were definitely one of the few who got it that bad. Totally wrong. We were basically unscathed in comparison. Luckily, we still had our beds to sleep in every night and our kitchen was back to functional by January. Now, it’s like nothing even happened. We know that’s not true for many others though.
Like any other anniversary, it’s hard to know when enough is enough. There were commemorations everywhere last year and we all felt it was necessary. Now, two years later, what more can we talk about? The most important thing is being aware of just how many people are still displaced, are still hurting from this. Take a drive through Highlands and there are houses that haven’t even been touched since that night. Others are just now being raised. People are still living in trailers. Those are the types of things that still have to be discussed. Those are the things that we can’t forget. The holiday season never gets easier when you don’t have a home. If you know someone who needs help, give ’em a hand. A little bit, even the very littlest bit, goes such a long way. A case of water, some cans of soup, hopeful words of encouragement. Don’t be afraid to offer that. I can promise you it will make a world of difference.
So now, two years later, in a few moments of reflection, we can recall that day like it was yesterday. The smell of the air still lingers in our noses, the wind blowing our hair feels more ominous than it used to, and the water just doesn’t seem as welcoming as it once did. But normalcy has returned and we will continue to do our best to get that back for so many other people.
We did learn a few useful things though. Sandbags really won’t stop six feet of water from rushing your home, refrigerators can float, you can cook a solid meatloaf on the grill, boats make for cool lawn decorations, a school of fish can survive in a submerged basement, and hope can be found in the most unexpected places.