My name is Vanessa. My husband, children, and I live in Pinehurst subdivision. Our home had five feet of water and we, like so many, received no insurance proceeds.

I have seen some of your updates via my sister that lives in Atlanta and wish to thank you for all that you have done and all that you continue to do. The magnitude of your dedication, spirit, leadership, and confidence has brought us more than you will ever know. Your kindness is immeasurable.

Immediately following the storm, I recall living just moment to moment. Over the last ten months, (WOW!! Ten months?) I have experienced grief. I have asked myself, “How many family members and friends have I lost? Where will I live? How do I explain this to my children?” and each morning for just a second, I would ask is this real?” I have wondered, “Will I ever be normal again?” I have taken life one minute at a time, I have lost control, I have lost my temper, I have lost all my clothing, photographs, heirlooms, children’s first haircuts, my office, my home, and my dog. Sometime in the midst of all that, I also lost my great-grandmother who was my mother and best friend. I have learned a great deal about appreciation, priorities, hope, and courage. I have learned that you will never know what each day will bring. God is good. Say what you feel now because tomorrow may be too late. I am blessed. Our community is strong. It will be a long time before we get to experience normal, it will be better. I have learned to cook breakfast, lunch, and dinner with one burner and a family of four can live in under 300 square feet. I have learned more than I have ever wanted to about construction and deconstruction. I know that we are only beginning a long slow process. I know that without selfless acts like the ones that you and your family have made, we would not be where we are today. I am certain that without giving and selfless volunteers like you, my family, job, community and spirit would not be strong.

Thank you, thank you, a million times thank you.
Ocean Springs, Mississippi