Several weeks ago, I was awakened at 5am to the sound of a warning signal coming from my cell phone. When I picked up the phone to see what the warning was about, I saw that I had slept through 2 flood warnings and was finally be awaken by the 3rd flood warning (did I tell you that 3 is my number?). When I read the notice, I jumped out of bed, switched out of my pj's, and raced to the basement. Thoughts of the 2010 flood raced through my mind. A flood where I lost everything in the basement. 2 furnaces, a washer and dryer, a freezer, and boxes of memories.
Images of seeing...
It's a day that will forever be etched into my memory. Oh, and before I forget to tell you, I don't like in a flood plain - it was an "act of god" flood! 12+ inches in < 24 hours.
As I walked down the basement stairs, the floor was wet, and I saw water coming in from under the walkout basement door. This is what happened in 2010 - it rained so fast that the outside drain could not keep up with the water and as a result, the water started to build up outside and at some point, the water pressure literally broke the door jam and filling my basement with water. So, to prevent this from happening again, I grabbed a bucket, went outside and started to bail water in the pouring rain as it thundered and lightened above me. I prayed to not get struck by lightning (as me and electric have a long history of having issues).
As I was bailing water, my thoughts were being flooded with memories.
These memories turned my frustration into a flood of gratitude for the lessons learned/gifts received during that 2010 flood. Let's be honest - I didn't immediately learn these lessons or see the gift in the experience. It took time for the gift of the experience to emerge. In fact, I don't think I truly saw the full gift of the experience until the story came full circle and I got to experience the flood from a different perspective. What was the gift that I received from this experience?
I learned that life happens on life's terms, and I get to choose how I want to accept the terms. I can either get angry, play the victim card, throw a temper tantrum and push against the circumstances or I can go with the flow of the current circumstances and trust I'm exactly where I need to be, and everything will be OK. It is always my choice.
By 6:30am, the rain had stopped, and the water was receding in my basement. By 7am I was making coffee and watching the news with a friend and discussing the next set of improvement plans for the next flood (as I know there will be another one at some point). As I sipped my coffee, I felt lucky this time, as I only got 3 inches in the basement (I keep everything 24 inches off of the floor now) and mother nature helped me wash a floor that was on my Fall Cleaning to-do list. So, I can check that off of my list.
Do you have a story you would like to share about finding the gift in an unplanned life situation? Send me an email. I would love to hear about it.
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Stories to inspire you on your own journey to rediscovering joy in your life.