Finding relief in Hurricane Harvey

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I had always thought of myself as a princess. A princess lives in a beautiful palace, at least that is what it says in all the fairytales and storybooks. I had always thought of my home as a palace. I had my own room and I lived with my family, I was the happiest girl alive. I knew that we did not have the biggest house, and that we did not necessarily live in a mansion. But nonetheless, our house was my palace and the most perfect thing for me.

When my dad passed away and with my sister being gone for college, my mom felt as though our palace was too big for us now. So, for the first time in my whole life, I was moving. I had always seen people move in movies or hear about it in school, but I had never actually done it. We went from living in a somewhat large house, to a smaller, but comfortable apartment. As time passed, I grew to love this apartment for what it was. We had our own building pool, and we had made friends in our neighborhood. But, we lived across the street from Braes Bayou. Imagine a big, brownish-green monster who had the power to destroy and take away something that you loved. Now imagine that monster as a body of water, and there you get Braes Bayou. Braes Bayou was known for flooding out homes and apartments, particularly the apartments that my mom and I were staying in. This always had me on edge, especially during hurricane season. In the summer of 2017, we heard about Hurricane Harvey and how drastic it was expected to be. To say that I was scared was an understatement. My mom did not even want to leave our home, she wanted us to stay and ride it out. I had a bad feeling about this, and so did my best friend, so we ended up going to her house throughout the hurricane. There was no damage at her house, and the lights only went off once or twice. But, I knew that this hurricane would do some type of damage to my house. When the news came on, we would always sit and watch and hear the news anchor say my neighborhood was in horrible shape. Those words devastated me every time I heard them, but I knew that whatever happened was God’s plan. As we left my best friends’ house and traveled back home to see the damage, the image was horrible. My bed was flipped over, and my mirror was cracked. There was debris and dirt all on the walls and the floor. The smell of the house made me nauseous. I thought that we had hit rock bottom.

We ended up traveling to my cousin’s house to stay with her and her family. They were very hospitable, but it never truly felt like home. My mom had been condo hunting for a while, and when she finally found one, it felt like a weight was lifted off my shoulders. But that reaction was nothing compared to the one I had when I finally saw the condo. It was beautiful, spacious, in a neighborhood that was so family-friendly. I loved it and I knew that this was my relief that I found in Hurricane Harvey.

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