The outpouring of love and support has been overwhelming at times. We never imagined that we would have this kind of support from people.We have gotten help from so many it is going to be nearly impossible to thank each and every person. Though I have tried to keep a running list of everyone that has contributed something, I am quite positive I have missed many and do apologize if a thank you has not been given though I do plan on sitting down one day and attempting to thank each person or group individually.
There have been monetary donations, food donations, clothing donations, seed and supply donations, and gift cards to various locations. Those that have not given monetarily or otherwise have sent thoughts and prayers our way. We thank each and everyone of you from the bottom of our hearts!!! Without the support of everyone we would be much worse off than what we are. Our mental health would be poorer and we would be totally demoralized. Though we would still be here on the mountain, we would be looking at the destruction still sitting in front of us, instead of all along the driveway in heaps. We would have been spending everything we had on acquiring new or new to us things. We are able to focus on the cleanup with what we have and use the help we have gotten to purchase necessary items. Thank you everyone for everything.
Accepting help is difficult. I believe it is even more so when you are used to depending on yourself for most everything you need! Being independent is something we, as homesteaders, and as individuals take pride in. To lose everything in one fell swoop is emotionally hard enough. To admit that some of the destruction could have been prevented by not becoming complacent and lazy is even harder to swallow. We have a perfectly good root cellar where we should have been storing our crops. Because it was a long walk to the cellar and we had an unused room in the house, it became a storage room. Instead of having some clothing, bedding and food stored in the cabin and separate from the main house, we had it all in the house. Due to poor decision making and pure laziness on our part, we have temporarily lost our independence.
We can now say that when help is offered, take it. It can and will make a difference in your life. Swallow your pride or what you have left of it and take it. Folks would not be offering it if they did not want to help. The help is a tremendous boost to your own morale and it improves a wretched situation.
Get to know your local community. We know almost no one and I am sure it has impeded our efforts in getting things cleaned up. All help has been from those in distant places aside from one neighbor who has brought food, a local business who has allowed us to shower and brought us food and two other people in the community. Having a network of people locally to support you would help a great deal in a disastrous situation. They can help find services or businesses that can offer help or provide services. Word of mouth can go a long way in a small town. businesses may offer discounts just because you are local or knew one of their friends. Beyond that, it is nice to have someone local stop in for a chat and give you a break from all the work that must be done. There have been a few days where it would be nice to just sit for a spell and have a conversation.
Again, thanks to everyone for everything they have done!! You have made a huge difference in our lives as we go through this process and we will pay it forward as soon as we have the ability.