Hurricane Sandy, 40-hour labor and a rescheduled Halloween

Hi everyone. I have been quiet for a while – mainly because we lost power for almost a week thanks to hurricane Sandy which hit Jersey City on Monday evening last week. The winds picked up in the afternoon and a little after 9pm hubby and I found ourselves sitting in the darkness. Sure, we had candles – we lit all two of them. But hey, they were scented.

I was not happy about this storm at all because my client was due literally any day. She had to evacuate from her apartment in Hoboken. Now she was in Manhattan and I was in Jersey – that combined with a hurricane, strong winds, flooding, no public transportation, closed bridges & tunnels and a curfew was a pretty bad scenario for a birth doula… To make matters worse, NYU hospital where she was supposed to deliver lost its power and had to evacuate. Great timing, global warming.

Our days were very quiet since there was no way we could listen to music or watch TV or anything. I would love to say our daily routine didn’t get disrupted without TV but in fact it did. Kamar was asking for the Fresh Beat Band (I did not miss them). My husband couldn’t watch the NFL network every evening (I sure as heck didn’t miss these trash-talking men in over-sized suits from the 70’s). And, shamefully, I missed the Real Housewives. At first we were creative and tried to entertain ourselves in our apartment. We couldn’t go outside since there was a curfew anyway…

Our gas stove was working so we cooked dinners from whatever was slowly melting in the dark refrigerator. Eventually, the food gave up and had to be thrown away. Bye bye food…

Luckily, the curfew was lifted on Wednesday so we drove to a diner 15-minutes away. Either the diner was lifted from the ground by the strong wind and moved to Albany, or else I don’t understand why we drove 2.5 hours to get there. Oh wait – that must have been because of the insanely long line for gas which blocked all roads in a 5-mile radius. Anyway, we finally got there, unpacked our dying laptops and phones, started charging them and ordered some food. Kamar didn’t waste any time and started flirting with a cute little girl next to us. I instantly thought about him being a teenager and felt light-headed immediately, so I turned back to my food instead.

Then we stopped in 5 stores to buy more flashlights (mission unsuccessful) and more candles (6 candles found) and drove back home through the damaged streets of our town, Jersey City…

That evening we received an update from PSE&G – apparently, the substation supplying our neighborhood with power was completely flooded. For them to restore power they first have to pump the water out, dry the equipment, assess damage and fix it. We might have our power back by Monday, if we’re lucky. Now don’t get me wrong, the candles are cute at first. But after 3 days without a single shower you start to feel like a savage.

We had no more food and the temperature was dropping – frankly, 65 degrees inside started to get even on my nerves. So on Thursday afternoon we packed our stuff and evacuated to our in-laws. I took this shot on Verrazano Bridge while leaving New Jersey, Brooklyn bound.

It felt good to be in Brooklyn – we had light, warmth and hot showers. And Kam had his cousin to play with for three days straight. My child was occupied with his cousin at grandparents’ – one would think I get a chance to relax. Not quite – 2 reasons. 1) The kids were about to demolish the apartment so hubby and I took them out to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden – they had a blast, especially Kamar who discovered rolling all over the ground was a ton of fun.

And I was happy to find some beauty in the hurricane-destroyed land…

2) My client went to labor on Friday. Her contractions were far apart and manageable so they didn’t need me until Saturday morning. If you think I slept that night you are mistaken. I took these two pictures for you that weekend as I was walking past the Brooklyn Museum – look for 2 differences:

First difference: picture 1 – leaving home on Saturday morning, picture 2 – returning home 24 hours later.

Second difference: picture 1 – my client was in labor, picture 2 – my client had a beautiful baby girl.

We packed our stuff the day I got back from the birth and left for Jersey in the afternoon – thanks to our lovely neighbors I knew our power was back. Woo hoo! It felt so good to be home, the heater was running and we could cozy up by the TV later that night. The next day, on Monday 11/5/2012 we had Halloween in New Jersey. It was officially rescheduled for that day due to the hurricane. I made pumpkin muffins which were attacked immediately by my husband and son.

Kamar was Super Grover 2.0 this year. Although I did not approve of the commercial costume, I had to admit he looked pretty cute in it.

It was the first time he went trick-or-treating and I have a feeling it instantly became his favorite activity due to the result it had – a ton of candy!

So this is how the hurricane impacted our lives. Besides the loss of power, labor drama, rescheduled Halloween and a few delayed Etsy orders we sustained no damage. But my heart goes out to all the people that lost their loved ones, their homes and precious items. Everyone should take global warming seriously now. Please take care of our planet, she’s only begging us to stop destroying her and calling for help.

3 thoughts on “Hurricane Sandy, 40-hour labor and a rescheduled Halloween

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