Beta Today, Mo Betta Tomorrow

I don’t want to make light of PTSD.
But every time it rains, there’s a rise of anxious and stress.
The more it rains, the higher those levels go up.
Hurricane Harvey messed us up and we’ll always feel anxious when it rains. PTSD of some form.

We had just became homeowners for the first time in July of 2017.
Then a month later, Harvey way overstayed his welcome.
We didn’t get flooded-flooded.
We hardly told anybody because there were far more people in far dire shape than us. They had feets (…not a word…) of water inviting itself into their homes.
We had inches… if that. Maybe like an inch in 3 parts of the house: guest room, son’s closet, and the door that leads to the back yard.

Some helpful folks came (during the storm!) and ripped up the affected carpets and helped make sure nothing gets worse.

Then the rebuild began for everyone.
We would be fine… our house is more than livable. We wanted to help others first. Then after months of helping others, we were simply tired and we assessed that the damages weren’t pertinent. We can put it off for a little bit.
We did receive Phase 1 and Phase 2 help from FEMA.
Phase 1 was to rip out the damaged parts.
Phase 2 was to install sheet rock.
Phase 3 was supposed to finish up all the work from phases 1 and 2. But they stopped after phase 2.
Some friends came and tried to address issues here and there but we never really fully addressed everything.

Then we got connected with an awesome nonprofit called Mosaic In Action and they came and did so much for our home.

They came and re-did the walls for the guest room and son’s closet and are in the process of figuring out how to address the door to the backyard.
They installed a drainage system in the front to help with lessen the build of water during heavy storms. And they fixed our roof.

We’ll always be grateful for everything they’ve done for us.
There have been few storms and we obsessively check the spots. Everything was holding up fine and dandy. But that anxiety and stress is still there… fricking Harvey.

At the time of writing this, it’s a Tuesday, where Tropical Storm Beta was just unrelenting throughout the early morning.
Yesterday, through Mosaic in Action, we got new carpets installed in the guest room and Son’s closet.
This morning, out of anxiety-drive habit, I went to check the troubled areas.
And at the edge of the closet wall in Nathanael’s room, the carpet was damp. Well damn.
So I ran into the guest room and felt along the wall. It felt dry… but I kept patting and feeling. It feels damp but is that in my head… or are my fingers wet from the other room…? Finally, I stuck my hand underneath crack between the wall and floor and kinda felt around here and there. Damp.
Well shit.

A quick email and phone call informed me I should just pull the carpet back and let it dry. When this all clears, we’ll tackle the walls.

I pulled back the carpet, sent these pictures to my wife:

I sat back and all I could do was laugh.
We literally installed new carpet yesterday.
What more could I do but laugh in that moment.
I felt like I was in on the joke God was playing on us.
I won’t even get into the details of my wife’s commute to work. That’s her story to tell.

I’ve been oscillating between being anxious and being grateful.
During this pandemic, I’ve been trying my best to count my blessings more than anything else.
This moment isn’t any different.
It would’ve been way worse without the help of Mosaic.
The carpet will dry up and be put back later.
The wall will be addressed. I can only imagine more storms in the future as climate change brings about more hurricanes.
And currently, the 3rd quarter ended and the Lakers are down by 18. Let’s hope the Nuggets don’t pull a Clippers and keep this up. It’s a better day any time the Lakers or the Cowboys lose.

We have our health.
We are not displaced.
It’s an inconvenience that will be resolved.
But it’s wild how less of an inch of water stirs up so much anxiety and stress. And how the sound of heavy rain — while soothing in California — brings about stressed and anxiety induced paranoia. Fricking Harvey.

I write this not to complain or to fish for sympathy.
Every Tuesday, I have a reminder go off to write for the blog. And I’ve just been writing what’s on my mind as I sit in front of the keyboard. I don’t edit. I just write for the sake of writing and for the sake of keeping this blog updated. (So you’ll have to excuse all the grammatical errors you’ve navigated through up to this point). And as I was sat to write, the rain just picked up and I can’t think of anything else but the rain.

Today was Beta.
(And brushing up on my already terrible pidgin)
Tomorrow mo’ betta, yea?

PS. If you’re looking to donate to a nonprofit or be involved in one, Mosaic in Action is a great place to start. There are still homes struggling from Harvey. Beta didn’t do any favors for anyone, especially people still recouping from Harvey.
Here’s a link to their donation page
Here’s their home page for more about who they are.
And for transparency purposes, I now sit on the board of Mosaic in Action.

During dinner my wife and I got into a pretty heated argument.
She said she’d rather deal with earthquakes and fire than the rain and flooding. I responded that I strongly felt fires were worse than flooding. Then that devolved into which way would be worse to die: she said drowning and I said being burned alive.

Dear readers, will you indulge me in this stupid and morbid conversation and show my wife that she is wrong?

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