When I see picture after picture of the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, I get the chills.  I feel like I’ve been through this before many, many years ago.  And actually I have.  I was a kid at the time, and it was Hurricane Agnes that caused the devastation.  I still remember how scared I was like it was yesterday.

My family lost most of its possessions, and the same was true for all of our neighbors and friends.  And the actual hurricane was just the beginning of a long, grueling process.

The clean-up seemed endless, and the whole ordeal took a toll on my parents and everyone we knew.  It’s really hard to explain to someone who has never been through it.  I didn’t fully understand it then, but I’m beginning to understand it now.

Because now I am an adult with kids of my own.  And thankfully my kids didn’t experience the devastation first-hand like I did when I was a kid.  But some of their friends weren’t so fortunate.  And it’s very scary for all of them.

My kids grew up with the beach and boardwalk just a few miles away.  And knowing that certain places will never be the same is hard to imagine.  It will be sad to see what the devastating storm has done to  ‘my beach’.

I know from experience that it takes a very long time to recover and you never, ever forget.  Memories are etched in your mind forever.

But one thing I do know is this…all ‘things’ can be replaced, but people cannot.  What matters most is that people are safe and sound.  And as hard as it may be to believe right now, people are a lot stronger than they think they are.  And in the end they rebuild their lives and weather life’s storms together.