Eliza Grace was born on March 15, 2006, at 26 weeks, 4 days, weighing 1 pound 4 ounces and measuring just 11.5 inches long. She is the light of my soul and this is the story of our life in the big city.

Monday, November 5, 2012

November in New York City

Originally I had planned my end of October post to be one filled with photos of Eliza and her Halloween shenanigans. 

But then Sandy arrived.  

We still were able to trick or treat since we were extremely fortunate to be in an area of the city that did not suffer any power outage or any real damage, so Eliza and her friends had a bit of normalcy. Eliza and I were fortunate to be able to share our home with some friends who did not have power, so the kids thought it was one never ending play date and were spared the devastation that so many have lived through.

Eliza and I have been through pretty bad hurricanes on Saba, but seeing a hurricane hit a city of 8,000,000 people, plus the millions of people in New Jersey and Long Island is a far different thing.  Sometimes we think our city and our beaches are invincible but we were reminded in a terrible way that our city and shores are not immune to the force of nature.

We are now a week post-Sandy and with the election upon us, the news is already focused on other more national and global issues, which is understandable to a degree,  But as I talk with people in other parts of the country, I am shocked by their assumptions, very wrong assumptions, that everything is just fine here.

It is far from fine.

This was not a free week's vacation from work and school.  People have died, people have lost everything they had, people have been displaced from their homes, from their hospital beds, people are cold and hungry.  Lots and lots of people.  And many of them, like the people in Far Rockaway, Queens, are very poor and do not have the resources to move to a hotel and wait for an insurance check to come in.

Even in areas, like Manhattan, where things are approaching "normal", they are far from "normal."  The power has been restored to lower Manhattan, but many, many buildings cannot turn up the power because of low voltage/high voltage issues.  Some offices, like mine, have electricity but there is no heat, no phone, no internet.  These are minor issues to face in the scheme of things, but I give them as examples of what is going on the in areas of the city that are perceived to be "back to normal."  

Maybe there is a perception that New York has resources, wealth and has survived 9/11 so we have endless resiliency?  I don't know what the answer is, but it is has been very disturbing to me the number of people who seem to think everything is approaching the hunky-dory phase here.

So if you are inclined and are near one of the affected areas, you can volunteer your time to make meals for people who are hungry or donate food to a local pantry or help a neighbor gut their house.  If you don't have money to donate, maybe you have time to donate.  Maybe think about having your kids learn the value of charity, they are never to young.   If you're not in an areas where you can do these things, you can donate to the Red Cross, even if it is just the cost of your next cup of Starbucks.

You can help and there are thousands of people who need help.


Laraf123 said...

I appreciate this candid post. It could not have been easy to write. My heart goes out to you and your fellow New Yorkers. I'm going to text my donation to the Red Cross right now.

Barb said...

I think we're all kind of clueless as to what it's like where you are, and I really appreciate this post. I'm going to share it.

Wendy said...

You're so right. With today's fast pace news cycles, it's easy to forget that all is not back to normal. Just today, I was complaining to a coworker about how slow a title insurance website has been this week and then we remembered that the company's main office is in Brooklyn and they had to move their servers elsewhere. NYC is far away from us and we just forgot. :(

Thinking and praying for all the SMCs in NYC area!

BusyLizzyMom said...

I have thought often on how you are doing and if you were in the storms path. Glad to hear you are all okay. You are very right in how quickly things become old news when so many people are still struggling and affected.