What wisdom and comfort can I offer from these years behind the front lines?
I’m feeling all of us on a global level are hurting in one way or another. I’ve been thru so many disasters, and honestly never wanted to be in another one. And here we are on a disaster scale I never dreamed of.
Practice self care, have gratitude for anything, and manage communications. Disasters are like drinking out of a fire hose. What I see happen in firestorms is people engage til they can’t do it anymore. They step away and many don’t come back. This global scenario doesn’t give us an escape, so self care is EXTREMELY important.
CLASSIC FIRESTORM SCENARIO: Fire destroys a town as persimmons ripen on the trees in September/October. After the fire, those persimmons are the only color left in a black and white landscape that crunches beneath your feet. The people, the birds … everyone is gone. It is quiet and lifeless.
That doesn’t last forever, but it is devastating. The door has closed very definitively on the past, and the new door to the future is yet to be found.
Yet slowly, moment by moment the landscape begins to change with the first rain. The bugs, the mice, the birds slowly emerge… and the starving cats with their burned paws barely mange to find food. But as time passes the trauma begins to be erased as the new possibilities emerge… The people return, clean, rebuild, reconnect and life goes on… in a very different way.
So here we are kitties with burnt paws. The world looks a little weird and the firestorm isn’t over. And unlike firestorms, there is no other community to run to. We are going to have to find strength in us we never knew we had. We will need to chose our community carefully and remember other people are hurting just as much as we are.
As a result of my past firestorm experience I created a platform for RV crowdsourcing to help frontline COVID workers self-isolate after work.
Frontline workers need to protect their families and communities from devastating medical bills and even death, as a consequence of their work obligations. This service can also help recruit and retain frontline workers that would otherwise decline service to avoid risk and burden to their family.
So in essence this service is a lifeline for us all. I promise you that I am giving the best I am capable of and the only reason that would change is if I died.
These are probably some of the most intense words you will ever read, but this is the world we live in today… and this is the best I can offer you in this moment.
Wishing you well, Kimberly
Here’s a video I have shared with firestorm survivors in the past. Perhaps it will help you feel better too about community and about finding your own strength.