Friday, August 10, 2007

Random Thoughts

I am still a bit shook up over the fire. Especially when I look at the photos I took and then go outside my front door and see the building itself. I didn't get a chance today to talk to any of the people who lived in that building but as far as I know they all have a place to stay and are getting the help they need.

As for us. We are fine, and I have had time to think about how lucky we are. I thought about how our life can change in a split second, and when you only have seconds nothing much seems to matter except safety. When it came time to run out the door that is exactly what we did. I didn't even grab a extra set of clothing, yet I had the clothes basket with clean clothes in it in my hands as I was looking for something to put on. We got the dog out, but the cats hid, and even if I had been able to catch them the pet carrier is in the closet. In our haste to get out we ran past our bird. I could have grabbed the cage easy enough, but in those moments of panic I didn't remember I had a bird.
I did get my medicine I take for high blood pressure out of the bathroom, Yet I didn't get a brush for my hair.
I got my purse and shoes, I grabbed a book I had been reading but left photos sitting on the table. I stood for that split second and couldn't comprehend what was happening or that I might lose everything. We were going on pure instinct...Get out, get out, fire get out..So out we got, giving no thought to the fact we might not have an place to come back in to.

After the fire was out and we were allowed back inside I remember how wonderful it felt to breath cool fresh air. I looked around me and as I entered each room it seemed as if I was looking at my things and seeing them for the first time. It was in that moment that it hit me. I could have been the one who had everything burn up. If the wind had shifted just a little or the fireman had not been as quick our building would have gone up in flames too.

Nothing I have is worth much in the way of money, but the memories are priceless. I have things that can not be replaced, things that are special to no one but me.
In my living room I see the Goddess doll my daughters boyfriend gave last year on my birthday. I smiled knowing how much it meant to him to give it to me.
My collection of cats sits on the shelf by the TV and next to that my goddess statues. Crystals, nick knacks and other meaningless junk sits among the Family photos on the bookcase. I see my computer holding hundreds of photos of my grandson. My daughter has been after me for ages to put them all on a disk and start sending them in to be printed. I realized just how many can not be replaced.
My dinning room holds the old cookbooks I have collected for years, next to them a wooden bowl I bought for a few dollars from an old farmer. The moonshine jugs my ex and I collected when I lived in Tennessee. My old glass bottles and the pot holders my grandmother made me are safe in my kitchen along with a hundred year old wooden cabinet. A little wooden stool made for me when I was three years old by my grandpa who died when I was five. My hallway wall is lined with a moon I bought at my first pagan gathering. A hex sign made by a friend hangs next to it.. My spare bedroom holds all my books, photo albums, holiday decorations. My bedroom has all my jewelry, my pendants odd earrings an old broach of my grandmothers. all my shoes and clothes. Nestled on the closet shelf are boxes and boxes of photos, both mine and Deans. Photos of our life before we met each other. Children's births and parties, trips to the zoo, Framed photos of my great grandparents that somehow never got hung on a wall when we moved last time. Photos that can never be replace. So many things that I take for granted each day are stored in this apartment.
How would I feel if I didn't have these things. And yet they are only things. My daughter her son, her dad, my husband and myself..We have everything. We have each other.

I look once more at the building next door. Nothing is left but a charred building, Ashes, water, dirt. An empty shell where "things" once stood. What memories does that empty shell hold now? I throw myself into my husbands arms. We could have lost everything I say to him. I know he says and we hold each other tight.

Later I read this quote
August 9
On this date, many Wiccans from around the world celebrate the annual Feast of the Fire Spirits. Dried mandrake root or yarrow herb is cast into fires as offerings to the Salamanders.
The Fire in our complex was on AUGUST 9......

The only offering I have this year for the salamanders is the salt from my tears as I cry for my blessings and for my neighbors pain...

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Blogger Maria said...

I'm so glad you are all right, and that no one was hurt!!

August 11, 2007 at 8:22 AM  
Blogger kim said...

I am so glad you are OK! How horriblef or your friends and neighbors. Sending healing light.

August 11, 2007 at 11:22 AM  
Anonymous Jaspenelle said...

I am so glad no one was hurt. We are reminded of the fire that was at our complex last month every day. The gutted building is still there, the insurance company is being a pain I guess.

It really made Michael and I reevaluate our plan.

We now have the cat carrier with kitty food in it, as well as one of our spare camping backpacks filled with a couple changes of clothes, some food, photocopies of important documents and photos for renters insurance claims if needed - both the carrier and backpack are in an easy to reach place. Do you have renters insurance? We got it through our car insurance.

There is also a list in big print on the back of the front door of things to grab if we have time (laptop etc.)

So many mementos we could have lost, but had we lost everything but our lives, that is enough. We can build new mementos and remember always.

*Hugs* When I light my peace candle and meditate this evening I will light one for you too Autumn.

August 11, 2007 at 3:19 PM  
Blogger Julie Marie said...

I was not home when our fire started, and my husband did not think to grab anything. Our dog was already outside and ok. We ended up with our cars, our clothes, and my purse. What I mourned most: my books, my 100 houseplants, my photos, especially a Polaroid of my deceased brother that I had meant to have reproduced. But yes, we were lucky (and I had beautiful a baby girl one month later!)

So glad you are ok!


August 11, 2007 at 8:32 PM  
Blogger Granny said...

I've had one fire in my life. Luckily we all got out (barefoot in the snow) and the damage was confined to my kitchen.

I remember how frightened I was as I was flinging kids (mine and my friend's) out the door while screaming to my neighbor to call the fire department. (our phone was on the far side of the fire).

You know, I always say stuff is just stuff but still to lose pictures and the other sentimental items would be so hard.

August 11, 2007 at 8:33 PM  
Blogger dot said...

A horrilbe event that I hope I never have to go through.

August 12, 2007 at 7:43 AM  
Blogger Autumn said...

THanks everyone for the good thoughts. Yes we have renter insurance. I had let the policy laps but the fire frightened me so bad that I called the same day and had it reinstated..I will never be without it again

August 12, 2007 at 9:36 PM  
Blogger Carrie said...

To me nothing matters but my kids (cats) and Adam. I have a great mind and the memories are kept precious in them. Plus I store pictures everywhere. Home, office and moms.

August 13, 2007 at 11:47 AM  
Blogger Smalltown RN said...

I am glad you made it out safe you and your family....yes it would have been nice to take the cats and bird...but you and your children are paramount....I know we had two house fires when I was a child....first one we lost everything...second one it was in the mom had me and my younger brother under each sister and brother in either hand...and a couple of my brothers and sister being shoed out in front of her....we got out....I thank god for that.....

August 13, 2007 at 1:45 PM  
Blogger miss*R said...

I am so glad that you didn't lose everything too BUT remember, nothing is worth risking your life for. nothing at all.
you will probably be feeling very emotional the next few weeks, get yourself some Bach rescue remedy xo

August 14, 2007 at 1:42 AM  
Blogger TurtleHeart said...

Oh Autumn! I am so glad you and your family is safe! I can't even begin to imagine how terrifying that must have been.

I'm keeping you in my thoughts and sending you some comfort.

August 14, 2007 at 3:30 PM  

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