Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Disasters and Diabetes

You may have heard about the storms that blew through the DFW (Dallas/Fort Worth) area the day after Christmas. At least 9 confirmed tornadoes killed 11 people.  One tornado was determined to be an EF4.  Pretty scary stuff.

While the city we live in wasn't affected, a neighbourhood where my husband's friend and co-worker lived was obliterated.  The friend (who I'll refer to as "I"), lost everything; his house was destroyed.  "I", his wife, and their 5-year-old twin boys survived the tornado by hiding in a closet.
"I"'s house the day before
Events like these always bring the stark reality of our situation to my mind.  What would happen to Elise if our house was destroyed by a storm like this? What would we do for supplies?  How do we prepare ourselves so we're not scrambling to make sure we have what we need to take care of her?

I'll be the first to admit we are not prepared in the slightest.  I do have a bag of a few things in our "tornado room".  For those who don't live in tornado country, you want to be in a room that has no exterior walls or windows, and is on the lowest level of your house. I used to have everything in there; strips, pods, extra meters, glucagon... the works.  I had a reminder set up on my phone to rotate out the supplies every few months so they wouldn't expire.

And after awhile, I got tired of it.  So I took all the supplies that expire out, telling myself that I'd have enough time to get what I need in case we were ever in a situation where we had to take cover.

Fred went to visit "I" the other day, to take him some food and check in on him.  He was amazed at the huge path of destruction the tornado had left.  "I" was at his house, surveying the damage and trying to determine what, if anything was salvageable.

What used to be the living room
He told Fred a chilling story; his wife and kids were already in the closet when "I" went to look outside.  He saw the funnel cloud and took off running to the closet.  Not 30 seconds later, it hit.  The winds were so strong, it even blew open the door of the closet. He could hear glass shattering.  Then, 10 seconds later, it was all over.  
After the tornado
Half a minute is not a lot of time, especially in a panicked state of mind.  I'm pretty sure I wouldn't have time to run to the fridge to grab the insulin, let alone anything else, and get to the closet in time to be safe.

And if I'm being brutally honest, there have been times where I've completely ignored the tornado sirens going off.  Usually I'll turn on the news to see what they're saying, then take a look outside. Apparently I fancy myself quite the meteorologist.

That's not to say I'm always so stupid. Last month ago we were having a pretty wicked storm in the middle of the night.  Around 3 am, the sirens went off.  A quick peek outside the window confirmed an eerily green-looking sky, so we scooped up the kids and ran to the closet. Side note: waking small children to huddle in a cramped closet at 3 am is about as fun as counting carbs at a Chinese buffet).  In the end, we were fine, but we did see some damage to surrounding neighbourhoods the next day.

Storm from last month
So what about you?  Are you prepared?  Do you have a "go bag"? It's not just for those of us who have to worry about tornadoes... What about earthquakes? Fires? Hurricanes? Zombies? Land Sharks? Zombie Land Sharks?  Okay, maybe I made some of those up.

You can bet that I've decided to change my ways and make sure my family is prepared.  Hopefully I'll do a follow up post to show you what I came up with.

Many thanks to "I" and his family for letting me share their story.


  1. I worry about this type of thing, and sadly, no I have nothing prepared. I used to be on top of it, but I found it was making me worry you for the reminder. And I am glad "I" has such great friends in you all to help take care of him and his family as they go through such a stressful time in their life.

  2. I'm so sorry for your friends. While living in KS, I hated the sirens but - we went to the basement every time.
    And no - I don't have a "go bag."

  3. Blessing to "I" and his family. So glad everyone was safe. So scary to think about this happening. A good reminder that anything is possible no matter where you live. Glad you guys were safe too...think about you often when news gets reported from your area! xoxo

  4. what a scary story! i hope they are doing okay after such upheaval in their lives. i'm glad you guys are ok! ZOMBIE LAND SHARKS

  5. Terrifying. I am so glad you all are alright. Some friend I am, I didn't even email to check on you. Sorry. :( We started the pump, and you know how that goes. I am so grateful you are OK, and grateful that even though there was massive damage, your friend and his family are alright. I too worry about the uncontrollable. I wonder what would happen in the event of a major disaster and what the plan of action would be. Very thought provoking post.

  6. Oh my gosh. O.O No, I'm not that prepared. 30 seconds is NOT enough time!! Bless their hearts, that living room picture is worth a thousand words. Do they need anything? i know I'm a little late. I'm so sorry. : (


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