I’m Digging Out…From The Tornadoes

Wow.  What a time we’ve had in the last few days.  As you probably know the South was pummeled with tornadoes last Wednesday, April 27th.   This day will go down in history.  Alabama was devastated.

We woke up at 4 AM with sirens going off, so we headed to the church {our shelter}. Then my hubs was off to work for the day. All day long Ridley and I were back and forth between home and the church.  All day long the sirens were going off.  Tornadoes went barely south of us and barely north of us.  At one point one was on the ground headed straight for the center of our town {where the church is} and all of a sudden it veered north. April 27, 2011 was the most nerve wracking day of my life.  I just wanted it all to be over.

Around 4 PM the worst storm came through.  We could see it coming…the ominous, dark clouds.  Then debris began falling from the sky.  Sheets of 4×8 plywood fell, mangled sheets of metal, pieces of grave flowers, newly shredded wood from homes.  Our vehicles were covered in “garbage.”

It was surreal.

At that point, I knew that it was going north of where we were located.  Directly toward my husband’s workplace.


The power went out because the tornado hit major power lines.  Cell phone service went out.  I’ve never prayed so hard in my life.

After a couple of very fearful hours I was able to get in touch with my husband who was competely fine.  We were being told that the power could be out at least a week, so my husband was on a mission to provide for what we needed.  Once I got him calmed down a bit, he told me his story of the day.

He and another co-worker had to leave the main plant area to go out to a smaller building to work on some kind of emergency power something-or-other.  He’s an engineer.  I can’t keep everything straight.  Anyway, they were told to head to the shelter, but when they opened the door to leave, the wind banged it open so hard that it almost came off the hinges.  Right outside the door the air was swirling.  The tornado {just declared by NOAA to be an EF-5 tornado} was less than 200 yards away.

They dove under a  table and I’m pretty sure there was some serious praying going on.  The building shook, but it stayed in place. As soon as it passed, they ran for the shelter.

{see that roller coaster looking thing?  that’s where my hubs works}

Needless to say, to hear that I could’ve lost my husband so easily shook me to my core. Once I saw the damage that this tornado did right beside his workplace, I was shaken again.

There are so many stories – so many good, so many heartbreaking.  There are so many people in need.

I’m so blessed and thankful that all of my family and church family are unharmed and their property undamaged.  We were without power from Wednesday afternoon until Sunday morning, but I didn’t complain for a second. We had our lives!  Never have I been so thankful for life.

On Thursday, Mom, Ridley and I spent two hours at Publix getting some survival groceries and then over an hour waiting in line for gas.  Thankfully the panic has subsided and recovery is in motion.

This week I’m digging out.  Digging out of my email inboxes, Facebook messages, Twitter mentions and everything else that piled up while I was offline. I have to confess that I rather enjoyed my mandatory vacation from my laptop, but I’m ready to get back to it…with a MASSIVE appreciation for life.  It’s such a gift.

Oh, and one of our next projects is cleaning out our landlady’s storm shelter.  It’s underground which makes me feel much safer.  I’ll be posting some severe weather prep tips and survival tips soon!

Thank you for your prayers, support and love!  I will be back posting normally asap!

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  1. says

    How scary that must have been. I’m so glad y’all were all ok. And we don’t even have storm shelters here (that I know of) but I wish we did. I have a survival tip too from the last bad hurricane (Ike)–have a gas grill and propane! :)

    Missed you!

  2. says

    I am so glad that you are okay! We live in northwest georgia and spent the entire evening in the basement. God blessed us because the tornadoes went 20 miles north 30 miles south and 15 minutes east of us… At one point the tornadoes were heading right for us (the EF-4 that hit ringgold) but it went right over us . A lot of my friends lost their homes, and one lost their life but I am so glad that it was not more !

    Be safe!

  3. Jen H says

    So glad to know that you guys are okay. I can only imagine what y’all are going through – the only thing I can offer up is continued prayer for all of you that have been so devastated by this disaster! Keep on prayin’ and picking up the pieces and God will make everyone stronger than they every thought they could be!

  4. says

    Glad to hear you are ok. Our area of Alabama was virtually untouched. We have been praying for friends and family across our state who were not as fortunate.

  5. says

    How scary for you not knowing about your husband. So glad to hear you and your family are all ok!

    Prayers go out to all affected from this horrible tragedy!


  6. says

    So glad y’all are okay up there in North AL. We were fortunate as well and had tornadoes all around but none hit our little town. If they had, judging by the width of the funnels, it would have wiped our town completely off of the map. So thankful!
    Kristen´s last blog post ..Fundraiser To Help Storm Victims

  7. Kerry says

    I’m thankful you are ok! The pictures just don’t quite capture the reality of it do they? My nerves were shot…the tornado(s) that went through Tanner and Harvest were too close for comfort….and to top it off my daughters were in Tuscaloosa! I spent the day yesterday in what used to be the town of Hackleburg doing disaster relief support. I am so thankful for my life!

  8. says

    Myra ~ so thankful you and your family are o.k….especially your husband! My Dad works out on Hwy. 20 but thankfully he was off that day. We were hit with a tornado about 5:30am that day but were spared and oh so thankful to the Lord for His protection. I blogged about it that very nerve-wracking day as you said and about the damage in our neighborhood on my blog (http://grettajohns.blogspot.com). We are still without power & will be for up to another 7-9 days. Praising God for your family’s safety & protection too!

  9. says

    Myra, I forgot you were so close to me in North Alabama. I am in the other hard hit region North Georgia. We were very fortunate we did not get hit but within 10-15 miles all around us there is so much damage. The little town of Ringgold which was hit so hard has my favorite furniture store in it which was celebrating its 50th year and it is no longer there. Not to mention me and my girlfriend were going thursday to decide on the sofa I had finally picked out and decided on.
    My stepson lives in that town and watched the tornado go through his backyard, but leave his house untouched.
    I am so glad that you and your family are alright and now we will all just pitch in and help clean up the mess it left behind then get back with our blessed life and pray for those who were not so fortunate. I am sure it breaks you heart as much as it does mine at the devastation the storms left behind.
    Stay well and safe.
    Robin Harris

  10. says

    So thankful to hear you are alright! It was one scary day, and I think I asked the Lord a million times over to please let me see the tornado if one touched down so I could take off! {We don’t have a storm shelter near by or anything really…} Praise the Lord He watched over us here in this part of TN! We had some serious flooding, but other than that everything was fine. There is a camp we spend a week at during the summer with church in Trenton, GA that one of the tornadoes swept through. It was totaled, but that is nothing in comparison to what some are going through right now. Even though it’s hard to believe at times, it’s great to know that He does all things well!

    Again, praise the Lord y’all are safe!!
    Ashley C.´s last blog post ..The Girl in the Gatehouse book review

  11. Ruby Showalter says

    Sooo glad to hear y’all are safe!!! I’m sorry though to hear about all the devastation. Praying for all of you in your losses!

  12. says

    Hi Myra, visiting yr blog for first time. tks god you and yr husband are ok. I will pray for you and your house recovery and all of your losses.
    rgds, dalyse

  13. says

    Oh Myra, how frightening!!! It was scary enough being WITH my husband through the storm – if we’d been apart – I would have had a nervous breakdown, I’m sure of it!! I’m so glad you’re all okay!!
    Rachel @ Grasping for Objectivity´s last blog post ..Cribs

  14. says

    Oh my goodness… I honestly cannot imagine!!!

    Here in Vancouver, BC, Canada, tornadoes are only on the news and I never want to experience one.

    I’m relieved to hear you all are okay and I’m praying for your entire state.

  15. Dee from Tennessee says

    Husband’s 92 yr old mother and his sister survived the EF5 Phil Campbell tornado….lil town in nw AL –26 killed , pop. around 1100. Another nearby town — Hackleberg is probably worse. Check out you tube videos. Heartshattering. My family received a miracle — it had to be the Hand of God who saved them. All glory to God — we are so thankful but still stunned and just overwhelmed at the suffering of others. Trusting Christ through it all. (Here at home, 7 have died from tornado in our neighboring county and more in nearby counties. So so so many families’ lives changed in a blink of the eye.) Hubz and I are going to try to come up with a better plan after this….but surviving an EF5 is something else.) Every day is a gift from the God.



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