A Lack of Thought, a Tornado, and an Inspiring Text

I haven’t been doing a lot of thinking lately.

Been avoiding it like the plague.

Not sure why.

Perhaps I’m feeling a bit disheartened.

Maybe it’s laziness.

Or perhaps I just needed time to rejuvenate.

It was two weeks ago today that my husband and I began our trek to Wisconsin from Georgia. He was scheduled for a three week training in Dallas, and three weeks by myself didn’t sound like much fun. So we drove to Wisconsin and spent the weekend visiting our youngest and her BF, before he left on Sunday.

Saturday was absolutely beautiful. While I have been greatly enjoying my first Georgia winter, I have missed the snow!


So has Quinn! We have been calling her a Georgia dawg, but as you can tell, she is a Wisconsin dog at heart.


My love for Wisconsin winters diminished greatly the next day, as the temperatures plummeted. We’re talking air temp below zero.

It’s really hard to explain to someone who has not experienced this what it actually feels like.

It’s so cold your teeth hurt.

It’s so cold you can’t breathe.

It’s so cold your eyes water.

Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it?

Reed flew to Dallas Sunday (well, his goal was Dallas…Delta had other plans…they thought he should spend the night in Minneapolis/St. Paul without his luggage), while I stayed in Wisconsin to visit family and friends.

I had been keeping my eye on the weather, as there were severe storms forecast for Georgia, and I was somewhat concerned. Sunday afternoon, I checked The Weather Channel radar, and watched as a red cell passed directly over our house.

I then texted Reed (who was on hour two of a three hour delay out of Appleton).

Weather looks pretty bad at home. 

***I was going to screenshot the text exchange, but some parts were kind of mushy. Didn’t want you to get your eyeballs stuck when you rolled them.

Reed texted our neighbor who was kind enough to let us know our house was still standing, but many of our trees were not.

And she sent us pictures.


So much to be thankful for:

  1. I was not home alone. I simply cannot imagine how scary this would have been. Ironically enough, we had just discussed where the safest place to go would be if there would be a bad storm, as we do not have a basement. Quinn and I would have had to hunker down in the laundry room.
  2. Our home only had minor damage. We were right on the edge of the storm path. One street to the north, the damage was much greater. Many houses are now without roofs.
  3. We have wonderful neighbors. So grateful one of our neighbors quickly checked our home for damages and then sent us pictures so we could see for ourselves.
  4. Reed has awesome coworkers. We received many phone calls checking to see how we were and if we needed anything. Which we did. We lost power, so we needed our fridge and freezer cleared out.
  5. Our builder was helpful. Workers were over the next day covering our roof with tarps, reattaching our front post, and removing damaged screens from the back porch. By the time we get home, everything should be taken care of. Except for the trees.

In spite of all this ‘gratefulness’, I feel shaken.

So much destruction.

So many lives changed.

23 lives lost.


So maybe I have been thinking.

I just haven’t been writing.

Because what I write seems pretty insignificant by comparison.

Last Friday I joined Reed in Dallas. I arrived on time with my luggage. Thank you, American Airlines.

On Saturday, Reed and I headed to Waco to check out everything Magnolia.



Even scored a table (WITHOUT WAITING) at Magnolia Table.


That’s right.

Walked right in.

Sat right down.

(Pro Tip: Eat lunch at 2:00.)


On the way back to our hotel that evening, I received a text from a friend who is participating in ONE WORD. She shared some of her disappointments and setbacks, but then went on to tell me how she was going to overcome those setbacks.

She had a plan.

She even had a contingency plan!

Her text ended with:

How are you doing?

And I’ve been avoiding texting her back (sorry, DG), because I didn’t know how to respond with anything that wouldn’t be soul sucking.


I have been ACTIONLESS.

And I know I am not a better person for it.

I could blame it on many things: change of routine, change of location, change in temperature, too busy watching GMA, lack of caffeine, blah, blah, blah.

But today, as I allow myself to think, what her text reminded me is that my ONE WORD is a journey.

And a journey has its ups and downs. Or at least the interesting ones do.

But most importantly, we are not alone in our journey.

Her text inspired me.

And that is just what I needed.

A reminder that sharing our stories is how we can make a difference.

And that is why I need to write.








One thought on “A Lack of Thought, a Tornado, and an Inspiring Text

  1. Karen,

    First, I am glad your safe. Second, I couldn’t do Wisconsin cold. Third, I think you are right. Your word is a journey and each day will be a little different. I hope you don’t feel like you aren’t making progress. Hindsight and reflection are super helpful tools (and they totally count!) so don’t forget about them. Keep going!

    Hi from CA!


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