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According to Plan

Written by Joe DellaRosa

It’s been a while since I’ve contributed anything to the Expanded Awareness Society, and it’s not for lack of want, or lack of stuff to write about. I fully intended to follow-up my last blog post with a post about my journey to find a long lost friend, what he has taught me about my personal quest, and the dreams that would serve as my only signs along a road less traveled by. That was my intention, but Hurricane Harvey had other plans.

I was in Port Arthur, TX while Hurricane Harvey was impacting the Texas coast at a historical rate. Harvey actually hit us as a Tropical Storm in its third and final landfall, but his outer bands pummeled us for several days, threatening flood throughout that time. But no one could have predicted what would ultimately unfold as Harvey made landfall as a major Hurricane and decided to come to a complete stop. He then headed back out to the Gulf of Mexico where he stopped to gather more moisture and strengthen slightly before making his final landfall by Port Arthur. The night Harvey made his way to Port Arthur, I was out in a 15 passenger van picking people up. Like I said, no one knew it would be as bad as it was. People who have lived here for 60+ years say they never have seen anything like this. A large portion of the economic losses came from uninsured homeowners who never thought they would need flood insurance. So for us, driving around in a van with a couple of inches of water on the road seemed like no big deal. The surreality of it was a different story.

Just before heading back to work (where I slept for the next week while directing search and rescue operations), our van was diverted to find some missing coworkers. At one point we had to park our van on high ground and hoof it the rest of the way to a bowling alley being used as a shelter (it eventually flooded and the displaced were bused to Dallas).  I helped people “ashore” from shallow water flood punts being piloted on the streets of Port Arthur, as the waters rose from below the top of my boot in the parking lot, to just below the knees in less than 30 minutes.  It happened so quickly that I almost didn’t notice (hence the term flash flood).  The next week was a blur of little sleep and being mostly fueled by adrenaline. But the lessons I learned about myself during this time will stick with me for the rest of my life.

I learned why I have been so guarded since I was young, how the fear manifests in my adult years, and how to overcome that fear. I learned that I feel energies from other people (and sometimes echoes from myself), and internalize them instead of letting them go, or learning from them, or using them to help others find. I unconsciously use them to feed my sacred illness, and to continue in a perpetual state of fear and trying to please, followed by anger or stress or sadness. I learned how to root like a tree and, like autumn leaves, let the via negativa fall or blow away. My experience with Harvey – somehow – shined a spotlight on my growth and served almost like a final exam at the end of a long year.

I still fully intend to follow up on my Cornell post, both in writing and in action, but I was sidetracked in a way I never thought possible, in a way that gives me the impression of being according to plan. Ain’t the Universe efficient?

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Joe DellaRosa

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