My First Earthquake or (How Not to Evacuate an Area)

This morning was miserable.  I had a skull crushing headache and lacked the energy required to change out of my pajamas.  From my vantage point of the couch, I had been able to delude myself into thinking I could contain Cupcake all morning.  Then Hunny came home from lunch.

Cupcake is what you would call a messy eater.  She’s been eating on her own for what seems like a long time now (She’s almost two.  Shouldn’t she be a master at using a fork and spoon by now?).  Since it’s summer, I came up with a great solution.  I strip her down to her diaper for lunch.  This way I only have to wipe her down, and I don’t have to stain treat the dirty outfit and put on a new outfit.  It saves a lot of time.

I’m laying on the couch nursing a soda, when I hear Hunny freaking out and yelling my name.  I had made tortellini with tomato sauce for lunch.  The tomato sauce in the fridge was bad, so I opened a new one.  I wasn’t able to throw away the bad sauce because we are out of trash bags.  Guess which one Hunny used?  I tore myself off the couch and fixed him a new bowl with the good sauce.  Being sick and tired with my feelings hurt, I went into the bedroom to cry alone.  Cupcake follows me because she can tell something is up.

As I’m sitting on the bed with her, I feel the bed tremor.  Is the bed moving?  I felt it again.  Oh no, I’m sicker than I thought.  I didn’t make a sound.  The bed began to shake harder.  What on earth is wrong with me?  Then the walls shook.  It’s not me.  The ceiling shook.  The entire room shook.  Hunny yelled to me, “We’ve gotta get out of here!”

That’s the exact moment Cupcake starts running from me, essentially naked, all over the bed.  I grab her clothes and run around the bed looking for a discarded pair of jeans.  None to be found.  I cannot go outside without a bra!  I throw one into my laptop bag thinking I can put it on in the bathroom at the coffee shop down the street.  I grab the only pair of pants I can find, a pair of thick, dark wash jeggings.  I slide my feet into flip flops.  Cupcake thinks I’m playing a game with her, so she’s hard to contain.  I wrestle her down and get her clothes back on all the while praying the building doesn’t collapse on top of us.  We run downstairs and outside.

We live in downtown Statesvegas in an abandoned building that was fashioned into four small apartments.  This is not the type of place you want to be during a severe thunderstorm let alone something stronger.  There are times when the wind blows really hard and things rattle in our apartment.  On top of that, major construction on the road and city plumbing system is going down right in front of our apartment.  I thought one of the machines ran into our building and hit it.

Across the street, there are crowds of people outside the office building.  It doesn’t look like the construction caused the building to move.  We started talking to people and learned there was an earthquake!  I never thought I would experience an earthquake in my home state.  Hurricanes, yes.  But an earthquake on the east coast?  Never.

There’s nothing like walking around in a big black tee and thick jeggings during the hottest part of summer.  I think sometimes sweating can help you think.  Thankfully, no one around us was hurt.  We are fine, and our building is still standing.  Our old, rickety building didn’t extinguish my life today.  So what now?  God keeps reminding me that our time is short.  What more can I do with the time He has given me?  What more can I do to be a blessing to others?  What about you?  A building didn’t collapse on you today.  What are you going to do with the time God has given you?

When I thought, “My foot slips,” your steadfast love, O LORD, held me up.  When the cares of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul.  Psalm 94:18-19


3 thoughts on “My First Earthquake or (How Not to Evacuate an Area)

  1. My goodness, that’s quite a morning you had! You’re amazing for immediately seeing the lesson and meaning in that awful experience. I feel very lucky after reading about it!


  2. I intend to continue to soak up all the beauty that is around me.

    Glad you made it though ok. We Californians take these things for granted, but they still manage to ‘shake’ us up a bit no matter how much of a veteran we might think we are.
    Again, so glad you made it through unscathed.

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