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You may or may not know that I live in Columbia, South Carolina, and here in my home state we faced an unprecedented storm and rainfall over the past several days. My area of Columbia received more than 20 inches of rain in 48 hours. I’ve seen flooding, unlike anything that I’ve ever seen before in my lifetime.
Many in Columbia lost their homes, their cars, and all of their belongings to raging flood waters that were beyond what anyone could ever expect. Some lost their lives trying to reach the safety of dry land.
While I sat in the warm, dry safety of my house and enjoyed the comfort of electricity, running water, and all of the other amenities that I enjoy every day, I watched surreal scenes of the flooding in my town as reported by national news figures. I read stories from international media outlets all about my hometown.
I saw the struggle of South Carolinians but I also saw a community that came together to help one another in their greatest time of need. There were no labels, just human beings who were helping one another to make it through the greatest catastrophe we’ve ever faced as a state. I saw the spirit of kindness and generosity and a strength that few will ever understand.
Over the past fifteen months, I’ve weathered my own personal storms. My Mom’s passing, my husband and I separating and reconciling, only to separate again, the reality of pending divorce. And I did not believe that I was strong enough to make it through. But during all of that, I was not alone. I had people around me, who were there to support me through the roughest storms. Some were family, some were complete strangers who offered a smile or a kind word. But they were there. As a result, I came out the other side stronger, happier, and healthier than I had been in a very long time, something that I would never have believed possible before the storms began. I have been blessed beyond belief from walking through the storm, in ways that I never could have imagined.
We all go through the storms in our lives…whether big or small. And no matter how difficult, you will not be alone. There will be others there that will help you along the way, in unexpected ways. And you will come through the other side and will be stronger and better for having gone through them. I guarantee it. It’s just a matter of trusting and allowing for all of the blessings that come during the darkest times.
That’s what the people here in my neck of the woods are doing now, and as the stormwater winds down, we will find the strength that we never knew we could have and will begin rebuilding our great town. And we all will be stronger, and better for it!