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Thursday, January 12, 2012

Douz Janvye

As I sit and reflect on the 2nd anniversary of the earthquake that affected Haiti, I have a myriad of emotions running through my head and my heart.  I remember exactly where I was and how I felt when I first learned that Haiti had experienced an earthquake.  I was at work, I believe it was a Tuesday and I was on Twitter, and I began to see tweets about an earthquake.  I was a bit surprised, because I had never heard about Haiti having earthquakes.  However I didn't think much of it, until I realized how strong the tremors were.  I don’t know much about the Richter Scale but I knew that the numbers that were being displayed for the quake in Haiti were extremely high.  I called  my then boyfriend and asked him if he had heard anything about a quake, because I was reading a lot of tweets saying Haiti was crumbling.  I was nervous and anxious but I wasn't too worried and waited to get a chance to purchase a phone card to call my mom and other family members.  As I waited for them to pick up the phone, it seemed like the longest time period ever.  My heart beat rapidly and sunk with every ring.  I lost count of how many times I tried to call that night.  When every major network flashed the images and video of the devastation I sat in shock, stunned at how quickly Haiti was turned upside down and shaken.  I kept thinking to myself, why?  Why is this happening, why us?  What have we done to deserve this?  It took three days before I was finally able to get ahold of my mom.  I don’t think I realized how much I loved my family until that moment when I heard her voice on the other end of the phone.  She answered in a soft voice that seemed lost, lost and so far away.  Farther than the ocean that separated us.  There was nothing I or anyone else could do to help.  Phone lines were destroyed, Western Union and all of the other transfer agents in Haiti were closed.  It wasn't until this past September, while I was in Haiti that I asked my mom where she was, how she felt and what she saw when the earth began to shake.  Hearing her describe the sight of buildings falling and the streets opening up under people as street vendors screamed and ran in droves to what they thought was safety hurt my heart.  I didn't realize it could be possible to be numb, tense and afraid all at the same time.  During those three days of not knowing whether my family was alive and well was one of the worst moments of my life. Douz Janvye se on jou m pap janm bliye.