Saturday, May 14, 2011

Emotional from Start to Finish

What a day.

Today started off 100% awful. 
Addie had the worst meltdown in my history of toddlerhood. 
It was awful and I told Chris that there was no way that we were taking Addie to the birthday party scheduled for 11:00 that we had previously RSVP'd for.

Of course you all realize, we did go to the birthday party - and  Addie had a fabulous time!
However, she did not eat her cake.
Goes to show just how out of whack the day was.

When we left the party, we headed to Tuscaloosa. 
We were heading to my Mom's to pick up Julien (who had bribed my Mother into allowing him to stay the night last night). 
It was then decided that we would take the kids, my Mother and my sister to dinner and to finally see what we have been putting off. 

There is no way to describe what we saw and my Mother said that she has never seen anything like it in her lifetime. 
It's heartbreaking, it's devastating and it's something that we can't even comprehend although it is all around us. 
In a way we felt awful for looking at the devastation, but in reality, we needed to see it. 
It's where we grew up.

To name just a few...
It was the only Krispy Kreme around and when you're a teenager that comes from a town with one stop light, no grocery store and more dirt roads than paved, Krispy Kreme was a place to go...

(over to the left...not Hobby Lobby)

 it's home to our high school rivals
(rubble as far as the eye can see)

 and it's next to the place where my nephews were born.

  At one point, I realized that I was holding my breath, it must have been an unconscience effort to keep the naseau at bay.

I couldn't bring myself to really look at any of the residential areas.
I felt like I was prying and I didn't want to be disrespectful.

What's so sad, that was just the tip of the iceberg.

We finally stopped for dinner.
We didn't talk about what we had seen, there's nothing that can be said.
It's all surreal.
Even for us - the bystanders.

As we were finishing dinner, a gentleman from a few tables over approached our table.
He was friendly and I could tell that through his small talk he had a point he was trying to get to.
He then proceeded to tell us that he remembered seeing Addie and me on television and he wanted to come over and say hello.
It's not that he said anything too specific, just chatting with us, but at the end he reiterated that he just remembered us and wanted to say something.
I was stunned.
How does anyone remember us from two years ago?
I was humbled and in disbelief.

On the way out of the restaurant, I stopped by his table to thank him again for speaking to me.
I told him how very much I appreciated it and how much it meant to me.
I hope he truly felt my sincerety.
I needed a reminder that my efforts are not in vain.

After dinner we stopped at the infamous Yogurt Mountain before heading back home.

We made it back to our little town in just enough time to spend an hour at the Buck Creek Festival before it shut down...until next year.
Yes, we missed the duck race.

It was a long and emotional day.


Jennifer Connell-Weibelt said...

I've been following your blog for probably over 2 years now...if I ever see you in public you bet your bottom dollar I am going to come say hi to Miss Addie. I check your site frequently to see how she's doing. Seeing her smile will turn any grey day upside down!