4.27.2012

Constantly counting my blessings

Debris in our yard included pieces of a telephone pole.
Will is wearing a T-shirt designed/sold by Maggie Crisler
of Florence, Ala. Proceeds were donated to tornado relief efforts.

Today marks the one-year anniversary of the tornado outbreak that chewed up a good portion of Alabama and spit it out. The number of deaths topped 200. The amount of destruction is still unimaginable to me. We were lucky. Others were not. From the safety of a neighbor's basement, we could see one of the more massive twisters pass through northern parts of Birmingham. Chris was downtown and could hear the storm.

I tried several times to blog about the storm, but never found the right words. Tornadoes are expected here just as hurricanes are expected in coastal areas and blizzards to the north but something about this storm ... it was nasty and mean and ugly.

My Facebook status on Thursday was "Today's mantra: If it blew away in a tornado, would I miss it?" Chris remarked that my status was insensitive considering the anniversary. Crap, it certainly could be read that way. The day after the outbreak, I was counting my blessings. A year later, I am still counting my blessings. Truth be told, we have too many "blessings" in our house. Call it clutter, call it stuff ... our house is too small to be holding anything that does not add real value to our lives. So yes, I look around my house and ask myself, "if that pile over there in the corner blew away in a tornado, would I miss it?" If not, out of the door it goes! Because life really IS too short. Life CAN change in a heart beat. A massive EF5 tornado CAN pick up everything you own and dump it miles and miles away.

My heart is heavy today. Please take a moment with me and count your blessings.

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