Thursday, September 08, 2005


I can't get some of the hurricane images out of my head. I'm reading everything I can, all day and watching as much as I can take at night. I can't stop imaging what it must be like to be a hurricane victim right now, living in a shelter. I don't know what it's like to have a life one day and have it stripped from you the next. To not know where you family and friends are must be the worst feeling in the world. I can't imagine being alone with only a green cot on a concrete floor, some donated clothes, and any possessions I could carry from the flood waters. The frustrations of waiting in line after line to receive monetary, medical, and social aid must be overwhelming. Not knowing where to go for aid, making sure you get what's available, keeping yourself and your children safe from predators, and holding on the precious few things that define your existence is an overwhelming anxiety ridden task. I cry for these people all day and all night, I can't forget them, I can't block them out. As I sit in my office with the sun shining calmly through the window, I feel guilty. I don't know why my life has been so blessed, why I am comfortable and safe and these people are bare and fragile.

I want to go down there, but I don't know how. If I went, I'd have to leave my job. If I left my job, I couldn't pay off my credit card bills and car debt and insurance and all the shit that doesn't really matter. Is it wrong for me to sit here, doing nothing when I know I could be an able bodied volunteer? I feel like a spoiled brat, sitting pretty in her untouched castle. I have to do something, but how?

Here's a flickr set with pictures from the Astrodome.

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