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I hate watching the Harvey hurricane coverage. But I can’t not watch the Harvey coverage. The devastation is unbelievable and it’s quite a flashback to 7 years ago when Hurricane Irene dumped 10 feet of water in our house.

We (along with our 6 year old, 3 year old and 6 month old twins) evacuated before the storm but our neighbors were rescued by boat. This was my neighborhood…

We were forced to move out for three months while we rebuilt our home. My 3 year old kept telling me she just wanted to go home. I know, I would say. Me too.

For months, it was a steady stream of building inspectors, insurance adjusters, FEMA officials, electricians, plumbers, politicians, contractors. It was extremely financially and emotionally stressful.

On the bright side, I was elated that all that water finally shut up this incredibly annoying, talking Elmo.

Houston families, affected by the hurricane, face an uncertain, difficult future. More than 100,000 homes have been damaged. And approximately 70% of the home damages won’t be covered by insurance. That’s because standard homeowners insurance policies don’t cover damage from rain or flood waters.

My heart just hurts for these families.

And obviously, we all can and should give from afar. But I can tell you that the actions of their friends and neighbors close by can do so much to lift them up.

I remember virtual strangers showing up to do whatever they could. They dropped off toys and meals at our temporary housing. A friend picked up our nearly destroyed double stroller and somehow nursed that thing back into pristine condition. Another friend helped us find and bring back our playset which had been dragged by hurricane force down the street.

Before finding our own temporary housing, we stayed for several days with a friend in town. The poor guy would come home from the office and find me, Rick, our 4 kids, my sister and her son (who were visiting) and sometimes even my mom! Can you believe he didn’t just sleep at the office? But nope, instead he bought home cupcakes for my girls.

It’s that type of kindness you never forget.

Sometimes life is so overwhelming, you don’t know what to do. So when people show up and just start doing something, it is incredible.

Oh Texas, we send you love. Thanks for reminding us what America can be.

Resilient, strong and most of all, kind.

4 Responses to flood victims need their friends and neighbors more than ever

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kelcey kintner