Things in Moore won't be normal again for a long time. Even for those residents whose homes were not destroyed on May 20th, life still hasn't gone back to what it was like in pre-tornado days.
Today, we helped a 6-month-old boy named Aiden. He lives in Moore with his parents and two older siblings. The family's home is still standing, but lost power for several days following the tornado, which meant all of the food they had just purchased spoiled and had to be tossed out. His mother, Jackie, tells us it was about a $300 expense that they were obviously not anticipating. The initial cost to replace everything was hard for the family of five, but the financial burden, Jackie says, was nothing compared to the emotional one her family and all of those living in Moore still face daily.
"It's like your town is gone," she explained. "Everything we do for entertainment, the bowling alley, the park, it's gone. The gas station where I used to get gas, my kids' doctors' office, it's gone."
While Jackie says it's depressing to see the damage everyday, she fears the tornado may have a lasting impact on her children as well.
"Every time it thunders now, my son comes running into our room," Jackie said of her 6-year-old, Brandon.
The family took cover from the tornado in a neighbor's storm shelter.
"I was at home that day, and I ran to the school to pick up my kids. It was a madhouse. They weren't signing the kids out, they were just telling parents to take them and go," she recalled. "I got home and got them across the street and into the shelter, and I ran back to our house to get the dog and the bag I made. When I was heading back to the shelter, you could just see it... the tornado, just right there."
Jackie says the most important lesson families can learn from May's severe weather is to have a plan for your family. Know in advance where you will go to seek shelter, have a bag of emergency items prepared, and give your family plenty of time to get to safety.
She also advices getting renters insurance, if you are leasing a home or an apartment. The family pays $20 a month, an expense Jackie says was well worth it in the end.
Infant Crisis Services is happy to help little Aiden during this time. We are going to be there long-term for those who lost everything in the storms, but we are also there for those residents who are facing a temporary burden due to unforeseen expenses or loss of income.
Things in Moore won't be normal again for a long time, but that's why Infant Crisis Services is committed to being there for the long haul.
Posted on Wed, June 26, 2013
by Melissa Smuzynski