Sunday began like any other day for church on Sunday. My day was spent in the morning @ church, and then the afternoon with my boyfriend Mark & our bug. Plans to ride later on in the afternoon with bug down the trail she wanted to show me, that her & daddy rode on one day. Church was fine & dandy, good sermon and everything. We wanted Mexican for lunch, but the group went elsewhere, and we went to where we normally ate at, which was Festival. Yet we could tell something was brewing to the southwest, yet we were going to go biking if we could & weather permitting. Since the weather was worsening, we chose to watch Gulliver’s Travel – the new update version, and that is when we heard the first sirens go off. Thankfully my mom and sister, and of course our dog, took shelter in the pantry. The night had just begun.
As the afternoon progressed the weather worsened, and the energy in the storm was magnificent. Yet it was dangerous, a highly potential tornadic storm. This storm as it was passing through, Mark,bug & I were outside watching it, until it passed over 7th & Rangeline, and then we came into seek shelter. Since the weather was worsening, we chose to watch Gulliver’s Travel – the new update version, and that is when we heard the first sirens go off. Thankfully my mom and sister, and of course our dog, took shelter in the pantry. The night had just begun.
We came in, and i received a phone call from my brother Caleb called and said I needed to get over to the house because it may be gone. Well 30 minutes later, rushing across town admist all the gawkers, and everyone trying to get to their loved ones.
We tried going down Highview, traffic was bumper to bumper, with a gas line going to blow, and the disaster would have been 10x’s worse. Mark kept trying to calm me down, which was a good thing. Heading into the damaged area, what normally took 10 minutes took 30 minutes, and what was a 15 minute drive from the church took almost an hour. We managed to get back to 7th street, took 30+ minutes to get to Maiden Lane. During this entire time, I was trying to post on facebook, text family plus trying to call, and all of this with no avail. From there traffic was getting rough, and much more crowded. So as Mark, bug & I got to 20th it was getting worse, much worse. Ground zero was just ahead, and it didn’t look pretty. We cut through Price Cutter’s in order to get to Willard it was getting worse. Trees were down left, along with downed electric poles, chaos in the streets. We got to a friend’s street from BSF, and found out that they were okay. We parked in someone else’s driveway & did not care whatsoever. We just had to get into the area where my childhood home was, to see about my mom and sister, yet we never realized this until later. Dad had gotten there a full 45 minutes later and took them out of it.
It was at this point, we had to run across St. Paul’s United Methodist Church, hit the parking lot full speed ahead, and then doubled our speed, yet my Darling could not find my street nor anything else. I arrived to where my sweetheart was & confuzzled and didn’t find the street at all, and i found it. It did not look like my childhood street whatsoever. An E5 Tornado ravaged my block, there was not much left of my house at all. We still thought that my mom & sister plus my dog Rose was with them. Yet my dear sweet darling, told Katy & I were told to walk just in case any nails were on the pavement, plus live wires were everywhere, adding to this was gas lines were broken & dangerous.
We got ahold of Caleb again but i could barely put two words together, so Mark had to call Caleb but his phone was not working, mine was not even working, at this point in time. Caleb told me to stay put with Mark and to let him take care of me. We had to get items for me since i had lost pretty much everything. Mark told me to take my time & to get at least two of every item. Mark told me to take my time. Instead of going to the 7th street Wal-Mart, Mark took me to the Webb City Wal-Mart, and as I walked in it so overwhelmed me. Finished there getting all the rest of the necessities. It took at least 15 minutes to check out, Mark told me to take a shower, so I would calm down. We had pizza that night, I still wasn’t eating enough just yet. I ate some pizza, at least 2 to 4 bites but not enough to completely fill me up. So afterwards we lay down, never really talking, let alone just laying down. I started talking about memories of the what was there. There is more memories of the home, for this is what makes a home, not the structure itself. We or I finally fell asleep around 1:45 am that morning. Store on Monday was closed. I slept until 3ish…woke up wanting gummy bears, yes it does sound bizarre, but it was what I wanted and Mark & I then got up…he fed me more protein…i so needed it though. Yes there were storms coming for the next 2 days. I was surrounded by my church family, which was really good for me. Even into the first week after the tornado, the sirens were blowing on a Tuesday, but I was safe, in the shelter of the Robyns along with being in the shelter of the Most High God. Even better, texting my Mark throughout the entire process.
Now the next week was one of the hardest weeks to go through. Going through and finding what i could, and what I truly wanted. I found several things that day. My closet was pretty much intact…yet that was mind-blowing. It rained that day. Somethings that I found were: a prayers shawl that was made for me the Christmas before, and a blanket knitted by my grandmother. The prayer shawl would be the blanket to calm me down at night and still does to this day. That day Caleb & Stephanie left for Joplin to help the entire family. It was the hardest thing as a family to do.we took everything to the Adcocks, temporary house for my mom, dad & grace. My temporary home was @ the Robyns, Mark had trouble letting me go. Yet he didn’t want to leave me because i was crying. Got up on Tuesday, didn’t get up & go to ground zero. It was very difficult for me to do so. Yet Joplin was so overwhelmed with volunteers from so many places. That next on Tuesday, i spoke with the gm about my situation, and i would return later to work. Well my old roommate called and was worried about me. I was too shocked to even talk to her & do not want to talk about it. It was during this time my parents lead our family to a place where it was safe, and we didn’t have to see it every day. We drove from the south side of Carthage into town each day. In those first days I was beginning to regroup and heal, but yet my husband (we were dating during the whole disaster and married in December 2011).
We had a temporary home, bigger than what we could have ever imagine.
As the summer progressed, we had temporary homes but not all together until at least 2 weeks later. Church friends are allowing us to rent her parents home until we find property or the find a new home. The week after it hit, I insisted on meeting with my Bible Study Group from BSF & I am grateful I did. I slowly began to put my life back in order, beginning with the word of God and then things began to slowly fall into place. As the summer progressed Mark & I grew closer to each other with Mark helping me in the recovery process. We watched videos of the storm, and from many different view points. We even swam during the whole summer, enjoying each other and savouring those days. We had barbeques, birthdays, wedding celebrations, but most of all family love.
This summer after the tornado was the hottest I had ever known hitting 100* + each day several days in row. It seemed that we couldn’t get a break of the heat.
I know many may say what does this have to do with the Tornado? Leading your family includes being the one to lead admist every situation, we come across as parents. Leading means so much more than we could ever say or imagine.
Tricia Gloyer book Is coming out April 1st, preorder and get many thing free including Lead Your Family Like Jesus Exalting God in your Family life.