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Katrina Kut like a Knife

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People were so desperate to save themselves along with their families, they were forced to cut through their roofs with an ax…

The blond who was leading the tour told us. I gulped as I stared at the dilapidated house. She continued: “Katrina’s 10 year mark is right around the corner.  10 years since 80% of the city was covered in water, 10 years since over 1800 lives were lost and 10 years since many families barely escaped and once they left, had to stay gone for years until they could get back to their home.   Where were you, does anybody remember?” She asked the crowd of volunteers.

Certainly, I do not remember where I was or what I thought about this complete and utter devastation. I can’t remember what I had for dinner last night…

I think it is easier to remember our own pain….

As we continued on our tour, I found myself frantically searching for more houses with holes in their roofs. I didn’t see any more holes; probably because most of the houses have been torn down.

I did find, however, find that several of the newer homes in the Brad Pitt area had ‘escape hatches.’ This way, they wouldn’t  to take that hatchet and bust their way through.

Riding past crippled motels and apartment buildings hit me hard too, you can still see people’s clothes and belongings strung out on the balconies.

It’s So terribly sad and I’m sure there was a lot of Unforgiveness swimming through everyone’s veins.

It is Day 15 of my Forgive everyone project. I would love to tell you I am poison free but that would be a big fat fibbie.

BUT …

I still Pray for those I need to forgive very single day. Sometimes twice a day.

I am not following all of RT Kendall’s suggestions but as of 2:00 today, I am fairly poison free. It is a process, I suppose but I’m starting to wonder should it be a private process. You see, blogging about something and / or someone I am having trouble forgiving is merely reminding me of the exact event I’m trying to move past.

So, as of today, I’m going to rebuild my internal house quietly but will keep you posted on day 21.

Being in New Orleans has given me a new perspective, life can be very messy and we can feel overwhelmed and devastated and very, very hurt. But just as New Orleans has been rebuilt, so can we.  Sometimes, it just takes time.

New Orleans Missions

IMG_3029.JPG The problem? Poison.

It happens to the best of best with highest of intentions…..  At 5:00am, Sunday morning, I rallied to finish packing for my mission trip. By 8:00 am, we are in a caravan; scooting down the highway headed to help hose in need.

Upon arrival, we were greeted by a dead house guest. (Too much poison) It is a bit humbling here and I noticed, My daughter, Izzy, ain’t happy.
It started when I informed her that It would be a 9 1/2 hour drive and that no cell phones would be allowed. You woulda thought the child was heading to her own hanging.

Neither one of us are sure of what to expect here in NOLA, this is a trip I signed us up for several months ago when I thought we needed to keep our minds busy.   Low and behold, the day sneaks up on us and ya know what? We had plenty to keep our minds busy. 😂

IMG_3031.JPGAll went well and the long ride wasn’t too bad. The car went caput on the way to New Orleans. But we made it regardless.

We are here to help rebuild houses after the Katrina catastrophe 10 years ago.  There are 11 of us from Augusta, several others from various church’s: Atlanta, Oregon, Virginia and somewhere else, I’m not sure. Set in a schedule of daily chores, we wake at 6:15 to start breakfast, morning meetings and lunch prep.
Side note: Now, I gotta confess: I was very impressed that grape jelly actually comes in a very large can.

We headed to the work site where we poured a concrete slab for a sidewalk and the girls painted trim.

 

 

 

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I have continued on with my project, although, I don’t feel the urge to get down on my knees to pray for those I am trying to forgive. Why?

1. Because everybody would think they were rooming with a freak should I drop to my knees.

2. Because that roach I pictured has already invited two other friends to the party and I believe it would prove to be quite distracting kneeling on the floor…..

 

Dipping My Toe In The Poison

 

IMG_2987 I took a dip into the poison. Again. 

My day started out better yesterday because I had some rest the night before – but I still found myself grouchy and irritated. I fussed at my daughter Izzy and couldn’t seem to let it go. I felt she had crossed the boundaries as far as me being her personal taxi driver when I really needed to be at home working on my book proposal.

Then my friend Katrina comes over (God has blessed me with many friends, I know.) I’m not bragging. I may have many good, close friends but I have an incredibly small family that I hold onto like a dog clings to rotted meat. Anyhow, when Katrina comes over, we sit in my room so she can discuss her issues with her man. She’s totally frustrated with him. At first, I do not discuss my Forgiveness Project because I’m totally planning not to jump back into the jug of poison. 

But then, she asked….

Or maybe, I just volunteered my situation. I could tell you that I thought I was helping my friend by saying “well at least _______ didn’t happen to you!!! And “no, I do think your man is trying to work through this issue with you or else he woulda done what _______ did and _____! ______!?!#<>?_____!!!!!!”

Somehow, we started off on Katrina’s love issues and ended up both drunk on MY poison.  Katrina leaves my house after two hours of poison inhalation and I’m left feeling deflated and hurt. All over again.

It’s no wonder I had another nightmare last night.  What’s up with all the nightmares?!?! 😡 This one was not  about him but about a family member who has hurt me very much. I don’t harbor the hate for her, I don’t think she is well mentally but what she has done has ultimately broken my heart. My dream was filled with hurt and memories of our past together when we were so close. I awoke with my feet burning and felt like tiny pins were stabbing me all over. Immediately, I thought of the two vultures that are feeding my family member lies and destroying our family. Believe me, this pain alone will top any lifetime movie you have ever seen. Anger burned inside of me like fire for the two vultures. How could they feed my family member such lies?!?!?! They have broken our family apart. Don’t they care they are hurting us? How could they be so careless and cruel?!?!?!

And then, A little voice told me at 3:18 this morning “pray for them.”

“No.” I told the voice.

My feet continued to burn like hot coals. (Can I just say I don’t know why they burn?!?!) I had to take a melatonin to calm down.

Finally,  I did it. I got out of my bed to pray for them. On My knees and through clenched teeth, I prayed for God to bless them and help them to prosper in life. I also prayed for the offender and his family.

I’m not going to tell you I had that warm and fuzzy feeling afterwards. I didn’t.  Sometimes I think I’m more angry at the vultures than I am at the offender.

Today, Sunday morning, I am starting all over. That’s what they say in Alcoholics Anonymous, right? To take it day by day? One step at a time? I’ve discovered that explaining/talking about my PROJECT FORGIVE EVERYBODY will not work for me so I will not. It ain’t like they read my blog anyway. 😂  I will continue to pray to those that have hurt me and try my hardest not slander them or try to “repay evil for evil.”

I’m heading out in a mission trip today..

Send prayers my way. For me. For the children who will be put in my care. For the houses we will build in New Orleans and for my FORGIVENESS PROJECT.