The rest of Wednesday was a blur. (If you’re picking up our Harvey story now, you can read the first part here.)
Alicia, our lovely host, had a bustling house with helpers and friends for the kids. Bray half-drove/half-walked back into our side of the neighborhood before dinner and the waters rise appeared to be slowing.
Still no water in our house. We texted nearby neighbors; “waters slowing” was the response.
I had an amazing group of prayer warriors around the country who had been praying since the weekend. I quickly voxed them an update when FEMA arrived and then provided another update when the waters appeared to be holding.
Our other angel rescuers brought the whole crew from Alicia’s home to theirs for a delicious meal. It was time for the evening briefing with Harris County and the Army Corps. At 7:30, Bray and I stood transfixed in front of the television as the rest of the dinner guests milled in the background.
All three previous updates reported additional waters rising in Buffalo Bayou from the reservoirs. Then this report: we believe the Bayous will stabilize. If your house is flooded, it will likely remain so for an additional two to three weeks. If your house is not flooded, we do not expect any additional structure flooding.
I cried, once again.
The roller coaster of the day and the five solid nights of no sleep had worn me through, but I knew this was good. If only I could believe it. Good news had regularly been contradicted with bad. Bray and I clung to each other like life rafts.
Our dinner host gathered everyone in a circle in his living room to pray, including all our kids. This is important for them to see, he said. It was.
After he prayed, I fell to the ground to offer my own meager prayer. I said a quick prayer of confession for embarrassing my kids with the tears and ground-dropping, but then offered our house to God’s service. If we make it through this thing dry, then allow our house to be a place where we serve others. A Hannah prayer.
I slipped out the door and left a similar report and prayer with my amazing national prayer team. We weren’t out of the woods, but the news was good.
Bray and I slept, for the first time in nearly a week, Wednesday night at Alicia’s.
Thursday morning, the report from those closer to the street: the water is steady. No more rising. Thursday night, I had to see it for myself. The rock, where Bray marked the highest water mark, was dry. The water remained close, but it must have fallen a few inches.
So, we ate out. Alicia had loaned us a car (ours remain trapped in the driveway) and we were able to travel south of our neighborhood for Mexican food. Aside from looking like worn rats, it resembled something normal.
We moved back home on Friday. One week after Hurricane Harvey began to attack our city.
We still couldn’t get onto our street. It was, and is, flooded. But we could park down the street and around the corner and carry our belongings back in with the help of the same angels who evacuated us.
I’ll finish sharing what happened in the days since Friday tomorrow.
It hasn’t been pain or guilt free, but there’s not been a moment we don’t thank God for this miracle. And so many of you were a huge part of it. Please know how tremendously grateful we are for all of you. We don’t understand why we were three houses away from flooding and it stopped, but we are committed to sharing what resources we have with others as they rebuild.