In case you’ve not experienced it, hurricane prep is no joke. It takes several days. It’s a lot of work. A LOT. It’s exhausting. Work and life go on hold so you can put storm prep and your family’s safety top priority.

You have sod in the garage or house for the dogs to go potty. You try to take down every item that could be a dangerous projectile, especially in a Cat 4 or Cat 5 wind strength. Nothing is to stay outside. You spend hundreds of dollars (at least) on supplies – water, batteries, and non-perishable foods being top of the list.

You try not to worry until the window closes in, and even then, you try not to worry and decide to trust your ability to make good, safe decisions. You rely on your faith to steer you in the best directions and to make those good decisions. Your family and friends contact you endlessly because they are worried sick because of what they see on TV. You try to assure them whatever you decide is the right, best decision, but it’s hard to convince them. You understand their concern because there simply is no way to know.

And whenever it goes away, you have to put your lives back together, hopefully without major damage to make it extra hard. But you don’t get the same amount of time to do go back to normalcy like you get for prep. You’ve got to get back to work and school while you still have your house is complete disarray and adrenal fatigue kicks in.

But then there’s the good, too. You CAN plan and prepare! Neighbors come together and help you do things. Everyone tells each other to “stay safe” and “let me know if you need anything.” You bounce ideas and questions of evacuation off of each other and talk game plans if you’re staying. People offer up their homes in case you need to leave your own. You check in on every cashier and stranger you come in contact with. You make jokes with friends to keep the the atmosphere light. Because at the end of the day, all you can do is prepare, wait, and try to have some fun and levity.

We still don’t know what’s coming our way. Hopefully, it’s outer bands of intense storms (rain, thunder, lightning, wind) and nothing else like storm surge (which is massive amounts of water from the surrounding bodies of water), power and water outages, flooding, broken windows and roofs, or worse. Forecasts and predictions are just that. But we are staying informed, on alert, and ready to leave here, if needed. *Leaving might sound like an easy decision, but I promise you, it’s anything but. A lot of factors go into that and it’s used as a last resort for most people because of those factors.

So I ask for this: Pray for the Bahamas, which is being hit right now with the second largest storm on record. And then add Florida’s east coast to your prayers, because we will get some sort of effect within the next 48-ish hours. The intensity of that effect is still TBD. We are currently under “Hurricane Watch.” But it’s sunny right now with only super short, random rain showers