GRATITUDE NOVEMBER: This is the first in our upcoming series of gratitude stories through the month of November. We would like to thank Rebecca Fox for being our first feature story and sharing her story of thankfulness and hope.
KATY MAGAZINE I NOVEMBER 2017
By Rebecca Fox
Overwhelmed by the enormity of losing her belongings and home, Katy ISD Board of Trustees Member Rebecca Fox is grateful for the outpouring of love from the Katy Community
November. A season of gratitude. An annual tradition of remembering the reasons to be grateful for a multitude of things such as family, friends, home, cooler weather, and even our hometown baseball team making it to the World Series. Go ‘Stros! But for our family, this season is different. Our gratitude is more profound because of a storm called Harvey.
Eight days of filthy water
Sunday, August 27, Harvey’s continual deluge of rain took its toll and breached the safety of our home and entered like a mean, angry, stranger destined for destruction. Its ugliness peaked at about two feet of filthy, nasty water and it stayed, unwelcome, for eight days. We donned camo fishing waders and trudged through the stubborn, still-lingering flood waters to see our home for the first time and assess the damage. We were overwhelmed with the enormity of the tasks ahead of us to clean and repair our home. The weight of the shock and sadness paralyzed our ability to plan next steps.
The kindness of a community
That’s when our community swooped in, wrapped us in their very strong, capable arms and carried us. Friends and complete strangers, dozens and dozens of them, showed up at our home, day after day, swinging hammers, carrying out furniture, clothes, dishes, appliances and all the things to the curb and piled it high. They tore out sheetrock, cabinets, and floors. TV shows like Fixer Upper make "Demo Day" look fun. IT ISN'T! We were deeply grateful for Second Baptist volunteers, KISD teachers, students, PTA friends and our children's friends for the heavy lifting, hand-holding, hug-giving and tear-wiping.
They worked in a hot, smelly, filthy environment, sacrificially serving us and carrying a burden too heavy for us to bear alone.
Tears of gratitude
When my heart couldn’t hold the love I had for these volunteer angels, my emotions would spill down my face through tears of deep, deep gratitude. People blessed us in many ways. Hot meals at the end of long days of laboring, homemade muffins, Chic-fil-A sweet tea, cookies or lunch would appear like a perfectly timed hug. Laundry and clean clothes delivered to the door. Organizing chaos, cleaning and restoring items that could be salvaged, compiling inventory for FEMA. Fall decorations at the front entrance of our temporary residence. All unexpected blessings. So many more gifts of time, talent and service were given to us. The kindnesses shown to us were plentiful and each one left an imprint on our hearts.
Setting a strong foundation
As we prepare to rebuild we invited people to return to our debris-free, cleaner, stripped-down home and pray over and write scriptures of inspiration on the exposed studs and foundation. This activity shows the unity and strength we feel because of the love our community has shown to us.
Thank you is just not big enough
How I wish for bigger words than THANK YOU. I long for a way to convey the deep-rooted, burning sense of gratefulness for our community for coming alongside us and serving us. Words seem inadequate, because they are. Yet no one, not one person wants or expects to be thanked. That attitude compounds our GRATITUDE! We are impacted by you. We are changed because of you. No wonder we love Katy so much. God bless you all!!
Rebecca Fox is a board of Trustees Member for Katy ISD and is a married mother of two grown children. She and her husband Dean live near Beck Junior High and are currently working on restoring their home with the help of friends, family, and strangers across Katy.