One of the things that hurts about being away from home is when something bad happens and you wish you could be there in person to help. Being away from home and watching something unfold via the news online is never easy to stomach, especially when it is personal.
I woke up early Sunday morning to news that an F3 tornado had torn through my hometown of Sanford, NC. The area is not known for tornado activity, so this one was quite surprising and sudden.
The tornado missed my house and neighborhood by the small margin of a quarter of a mile, but others were not so lucky. The neighborhood where several of my high school acquaintances live experienced quite a bit of damage from the twister. Many other houses and buildings through the city in the tornado's path experienced the same end.
I worried from the start because I couldn't get through to my family at first. Eventually I was able to get my mom on her cell phone, on her way back from seeing my brother in Raleigh. I ended up having to Google map guide her back to our house via an alternate route, as both major roads we usually take were closed. No one was answering at my house due to the lack of power, so once my mom arrived home she was able to see our house was still standing, and my dad was still inside. I sent a message to my brother asking him to contact me and let me know he was okay.
As of Sunday morning their time when I last talked to my family, the power still hadn't come on. My mom was getting ready to go out and see the full extent of the damage in the daylight. The pictures and video I had already seen on the local news let me know that the local Lowe's' Home Improvement store was gone, as well as a part of where my mom works. Thankfully she hadn't been working on Saturday, nor had she ever made it to the hardware store like she planned.
I'm not an overly religious person by any means, but after Saturday, I do believe he works in mysterious ways. It was a lucky chance that kept my mom from being in the path of the tornado, but it was unfortunate chance that destroyed so many peoples' houses and businesses that day.