A week of reflection…

Picture of Summer Fly's Daughter with her daughters best friend as they support each other.

May 22 I was another year older… No big deal as the day would begin, just another day, another year… The events of that day will forever be remembered for many as the Nation’s deadliest Tornado touches down in Joplin Mo. I went to bed that day just like any other day… I woke up at 2:45 am to find that my husband was not in bed.. A light glowed outside our bedroom door which is our loft office so I called out quietly asking him ” What are you doing” He replied, I remembered I needed to authorize a bill pay payment that he had forgot to do earlier in the day, But then he walked in the bedroom and said, A tornado has hit your brothers town of Joplin… I sat up in bed and said, What? He said it is all over the internet… Normally I am on the computer every day but that day being my birthday we were out and about and I concentrated on time with my kids and stayed off the computer and the TV was not on… so I was unaware of the happenings that day in Joplin… I immediately texted him and called him. Left messages then got up and got online. I was horrified by the devastation… A sense of helplessness was overwhelming me, but to be honest it was also a sense of guilt and fear. Fear that I could lose another immediate family member that I have never met…

You see the internet had led me to a father that I was torn away from as a very small baby.. One that I never met face to face. We talked online, spoke over the phone and always talked of the day that we would actually get together. Then without warning he died of a sudden heart attack… Time lost, and never to return. That day is still as vivid as if it was yesterday and it was actually February 5, 2006, more than 5 years ago… I have 3 half brothers, a step brother and a step sister that I have never met. All but one live in the Joplin area. I sat at the computer that night asking myself “why have I not made it back there…?” I could go on and on about work, finances, money, obligations… but really all just excuses that shouldn’t even exist…

I sit here and look at the devastation that the people of Joplin are dealing with and the loss of life that is so tragic, High school seniors whom lost their lives just leaving graduation… so much tragedy… so much pain… but feeling so blessed that my family and their friends were all spared… a miracle in itself, spared the loss but they are not spared the pain as I am sure it is so painful to be there day in and day out as people are trying to pick up the pieces and move on. I sit here and wish there was some way I could pack up the RV pay all my bills for three months and drive back there and help. My husband is a contractor and I know I could find something to do to help… but again life must go on here and there just is not enough money in the bank to just stop everything and to leave.

God has given me a second chance to take the time to meet my family face to face.. I will make it a priority to make it happen this year.. I am praying to the lord each and every day thanking him for keeping them safe. The outcome could have been so different.

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