The before and after

First, thanks for the kind comments on my last post. It really means a lot to me.

So, here we are a full week AS (After Sandy). Our office has still not been deemed safe enough for employees to return to work, so I’m home for the 10th day in a row. It’s nice to have a day to recover with the power back on, but it’s weird to be away from work for so long, and I’m actually looking forward to getting back to the office as I’m hoping it lends a sense of normalcy that has been missing for a while.

Things are getting better slowly. All our friends in Jersey City have power back and Hoboken and Bayonne are expected to see power very soon. There are still a lot of people all over New Jersey without power or heat as temperatures drop into the mid 40’s, but PSE&G is working very hard to restore service. In fact, it’s not just local companies. Walking and running through the city, I’ve seen the hats and jackets of electrical workers from as far away as California and Texas. Knowing that these men and women volunteered to come out here and help at the expense of working long hours in the cold away from their families for weeks makes me feel incredibly blessed and renews my faith in our country’s ability to come together and support one another.

Still, there is a lot of work to be done. The shoreline is a mess, and Staten Island and Queens are still digging out. Chris and I are on the hunt for a place to volunteer because we feel so helpless every time we turn on the news. We’ve made monetary donations, but we want to feel like we’ve done something to help restore the areas we love so much. Every day, we are so grateful that we and our loved ones survived with minimal property damage. Every day we thank God.

I was talking to Chris last night about something that happened two weeks ago and he struggled to remember it. We laughed (we’re finally feeling comfortable enough to do that again) because we realized our life has been divided into BS (Before Sandy- pun intended) and AS (After Sandy) and probably will feel that way for a little while.

BS, Cameron cooked me and the girls a fabulous 4 course meal themed entirely around fall. It was amazing and impressive and delicious! I didn’t take any pictures because I was too busy making sure I didn’t miss a bite, but it was beautiful and thoughtful. I remember sitting and talking about how we heard a storm was coming, but it was probably all hype.

BS, I was thinking the most stressful event of the year would be our big move. Hah! Isn’t it funny how you think you know something but you really know nothing? Our move actually went smooth as buttah, and I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank our wonderful friends for all our help, so Travis, Steve, Umair, Debbie & Mike, thank you thank you THANK YOU!! from the bottom of our hearts for spending your whole Saturday packing, breaking down, hauling, building and unpacking all of our many, many things. Travis & Umair, thanks for remembering every little item including things hidden under sinks and in drawers and for pushing that ridiculous U-Boat up and down Warren Street 457 times. Steve & Mike, thanks for loaning us your cars and moving dressers and our ridiculously cumbersome bed (which if it had been up to me, I would have just left and we’d be now sleeping on a floor). Debbie, thank you for carrying a screaming cat 4 blocks to our new apartment even though kids on the street were giving you the side eye and for organizing my bookshelf and making it at least 40xs better looking than before. Chris, thank you for… having such great friends! Oh and working like crazy all day Friday, Saturday and Sunday building 80 pieces of Ikea furniture, cleaning, hanging pictures and just being really ridiculously good looking while doing so.

We went from this…

to this…

in like 12 hours. And they all worked for a few slices of pizza. It is seriously crazy that we have such awesome friends.

BS, I thought the highlight of my weekend would be the HoBOOken 5k that I ran with Debbie, Cameron and Jenn on Saturday morning dressed as 80s fitness instructors

Oh yeah… actually it still is the highlight. We had a blast running and looking at all the crazy costumes. Finished in 27:00 on the dot. Weird and way faster than I planned on running, but it’s a 5k, so it’s ok if you cross the finish line wanting to die, right?

Then Sandy came to town.

AS, I saw way too much water (including in my building’s lobby) and not enough NYC

Um. There should be a skyline there.

And that used to be a park.

AS, I learned how to make black tea and noodle soup on a “stove” powered by about 18 tea lights. Thanks Mike!

AS, I am even more grateful than I thought possible for friends and family as we spent a night at Debbie and Mike’s as well as a night at Chris’ parents. Neither had power, but they both had water, which meant they were basically kings in castles to us. Those were the best times of this ordeal. Sitting around talking (and cooking) by candlelight and not worrying about what was going to happen next for a few hours was a blessing.

This whole experience was so stressful, and we weren’t even really effected. We were inconvenienced, but we’re safe. Our hearts still ache for everyone who is still suffering. We’re moving forward, but not forgetting. We want to help and rebuild and put this whole mess in our rearview mirrors… if we can get gas that is. Sorry, I kid, but in all seriousness, life keeps going, so we can’t stop, but it will be a while before we feel truly light again.

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4 thoughts on “The before and after

  1. Pingback: October Wrap Up (better late than never?) « I Broke my Umbrella

  2. Pingback: November Wrap Up/December Goals « I Broke my Umbrella

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