Wednesday, September 6, 2017

The Aftermath

Hey friends! We're back from our Scandinavian Adventure and what we've returned home to is devastating. It's taken me a few days to get back to the blog because I've just felt so overwhelmed. I've been exhausted dealing with jet lag and a very clingy toddler. I didn't know what to stay. Houston has been my home for almost 20 years now. I love this city and to see the aftermath of this horrible storm is just unbelievable. I posted this on my Instagram the day that we returned home from our trip...

H.O.M.E.  We are about to embark on our last flight of our journey home. We've been gone for 20 days and so much has happened. It's hard to fathom what we will come home to, but reality is sinking in. We were blessed to be away from the fear and chaos of #Harvey, but we still dealt with the worry. Worry for my family, friends, home and city. We had no control over the situation and my family was literally across the world in 4 different time zones. This evening we'll all be home. Safe and sound. In our homes. I feel guilty being away during this time. Guilty for being safe and having a home to come home to. For now I'll count my blessings and soak up time with loved ones. Tomorrow starts the volunteering and giving back to this city I've called home for almost 20 years. We will rebuild this amazing city. I know it. #houstonstrong #homebound #hoUSton
A post shared by Amy Gougler (@acgougler) on

I still share these same exact feelings. I have "survivor's guilt" essentially. I feel so guilty for not being here during the storm. I feel guilty for being safe and sound. I feel guilty for having a home untouched by water. I feel guilty for being able to go about every day life as planned. I know I shouldn't feel this way. As a friend reminded me on the post above, being away during the storm sheltered Chloe from the fear and emotions that would have come with being in the throws of Harvey. I am beyond thankful for that. God has a reason for everything. For some reason, he wanted us far away and sheltered from the chaos of the storm.

I've been trying to find ways that I can help out in the aftermath of this disaster. I've donated money and purchased shirts, diapers and cards with proceeds going to Harvey relief, but I really want to get my hands dirty. I want to be able to help people directly effected by the storm. Having an attached two year old {whose first week of school was pushed back a week!} and a working husband makes this kind of difficult. Luckily one of my amazing neighbors reached out to everyone on our street about adopting a family to help them recover from the storm. She had so many people want to help that we're adopting 2 families now to help them with all of their needs!

This post has taken me way to long to write, but I can't seem to put all of my thoughts to paper. I have so many thoughts and emotions about what's happened and is still happening in Houston. If you could, please say a little prayer for my hometown and the people effected. Say a prayer for those that may be effected by Hurricane Irma as she makes her way to land. If you feel compelled to help, please donate to the Houston Diaper Bank or JJ Watt's YouCaring Fund.

Thank you to everyone who thought of us, reached out and said prayers while we waited to see what the storm would do to our home and the homes of my family members. We appreciate your love and support! Now send those prayers to Houston because we need it. It's sad out here y'all. So many people have their life's possessions ruined laying out in their front yard. Recovering from this will take some time, but I know as Houstonians, we will come together and make it happen!

**I'm hoping to start getting some posts up for our trip soon, but it may not be until next week or the following. Getting back to a normal life and routine is taking longer than planned because of what we came home to. Plus my little brother is getting married in just 10 days! So much to do, so little time. But don't worry, I have too many pictures not to share!

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