When It Storms On Education: Diary Of A Parent

The Facebook feed of our very own Basilisa Perkins will serve as the final entry in this series. Even as a parent of 2, including a child with special needs, our simple experiences share the same heart. 

Monday, September 4th

Category 4 hurricane coming our way. Really trying to stay chill, but it’s not working so well (Harvey didn’t help). Not our first hurricane, but storms are getting stronger. We’ve had flash flooding in our area from just regular storm. Breathe. Climate change deniers need to unfriend me now! Please.

Tuesday, September 5th

Feeling a little better now that we know about work and school closures. We received many offers to be rescued by our friends and family all over the country.


I was really a hot mess when I saw that storm storm was now Cat 5. But, the plan for now is to hunker down and prepare as best we can. Floridians are not playing. They are taking this storm very seriously; which is good to see. A lot of people are leaving town which is also a good plan. But, we figured we’d have to come back and deal with all of this, and I want to be close to my parents and my sister.

Thursday, September 7th

About a week after we signed on our house (in the middle of hurricane season) we moved in and had to prepare for our first hurricane. I remember thinking that I hadn’t even unpacked, and that it could all be completely destroyed. It ended up being a very weak storm, thankfully. The news coverage afterward was of people going to the beach, kids rejoicing for a day off of school and surfers enjoying the waves the storm created. I can’t remember the name of that storm.

Our family has been through many storms since then: named and unnamed. It’s a part of life here. Hurricanes and alligators. Each storm represents a time in our lives and a story we pass on to our kids. It’s not like you can defend yourself against a big storm. You prepare and hide (and tremble in awe of mother nature’s power).

The sounds of a hurricane outside your door will haunt you forever, as I still remember from Andrew 25 years ago. Still, I have my whole life here. My family. Pretty much all my memories. My kids memories, from bringing them home from the hospital to their first day of school. All here in this home.

Preparation Day 1- I’m pretty tired from physical labor. Girls are requesting Ramen noodles for dinner. I spent time with both of my next door neighbors today. The consensus is we’re all scared, but we are going to carry on.
Off to get some rest.

Saturday, September 9th

We woke up to good news for those of us in SE Florida. The center of the storm is tracking west. But anything can happen as the storm leaves Cuba and is back in the ocean. We’re not out of the woods. It’s still a huge storm and will affect a lot of people.

The weather is starting to get bad here. Broward established a 4pm curfew to keep people safe, and so first responders can attend real emergencies. We are home. We are not in an evacuation zone. Remember, evacuation is only for the risk of storm surge, not wind. We’ve done all we can to secure our home. I’m going to try and read my awesome book club novel and have a cup of tea. Preparations are complete. Waiting for the storm to pass.

Sunday, September 10th

The sound of Irma raging woke me up this morning and several times during the night. The eye of this hurricane is now passing over the Florida Keys and we are experiencing wind gusts all over Miami Dade and Broward, 50 to 70 mph. This hurricane is massive. It’s just getting started. We’re doing well. Irma is not playing games. The potential for the Keys to be demolished is very real.

Wind is picking up even more now, up to 100 mph from Homestead to Fort Lauderdale. We’re feeling Hurricane force winds now. I can’t imagine what the Keys are experiencing.

Thank God, the storm is passing. Thanks all for prayers. We’re exhausted. No cell service. Updates tomorrow.

Monday, September 11th

Grateful this morning to have a home and my family and neighbors to help out. I still can’t believe our palm tree fell technically on my car during the storm and caused no damage. Clean up day.

Tuesday, September 12th

My husband made breakfast using our camping gear and our (gas efficient) generator. We can at least keep the fridge going, charge cell phones and run a fan. But the house is too hot. We sent the girls away to Tia’s house where they have AC. We slept at my uncle’s condo with my mom and dad who also lost power.

Schools are closed. 90% of businesses are closed. It’s hard to find gas. Last night we saw hundreds of people in line at one station that had gas.

I’m lucky I married a scout. He’s always prepared and anticipating what could go wrong. My husband worked for a local municipality for the last 12 years in Emergency Operations. Hurricane Wilma was his first at work. He has a good sense of how resources are deployed, and what the pace of recovery should be. It’s better to anticipate that it will take time.

I’m still in awe that the hurricane shifted west Saturday night. The devastation we would have experienced in this super densely populated area would be unimaginable. We were so lucky…this time.

For today, I’m enjoying the coffee and a quiet house, just us and our dog, Skippy.

Friday, September 15th

Home. Happy to be back home now that we have power! Thankfully we were all able to stay with family…even Skippy. It’s been a super stressful week but hopefully we are getting back to our normal routine. They say schools will open on Monday after 7 days away.

What do you think?


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