Saturday, December 01, 2012
My husband didn't even have time to grab his eyeglasses.
I kept looking for my sons, not wanting them out of my sight for even a second.
I was holding the dog in my arms because I didn't have a leash. She was freaked out and the harder I held her, the more she fought to get free.
That morning, at 5:30 am, we woke our neighbors with a plaintive "can we come in?" plea. They rallied around us even as the fire trucks came screaming down the block. They brought us in to the warmth of their home, draped us in blankets and gave us hot coffee.
I could hear the sound of breaking glass as the firefighters smashed every window on the ground floor with their axes.
It would be hours and days before we knew the extent of the damage, before we found out what could be salvaged and what had to be shoveled into a dumpster.
What we never lost was our gratitude, our faith in one another, our insane sense of humor, the support of our friends and family.
Two years on, our home is rebuilt, much of it identically to the way it was.
And as of yesterday, the last of the paperwork for the fire claim was file, copied, and sent to the adjuster.
Even as it changed me and shook the foundations of my world, I finally feel like I can archive the memories of the fire and its aftermath and put it behind me.
As we move into the holiday season, I wish you all peace and joy. And please, please check your smoke detectors. They do work. They saved our lives two years ago.