We fire bloggers are few and far between, I’ve discovered. When I first began to write, I didn’t search for similar blogs, mostly because I had no time but also because I was so new to blogdom. I’m still learning how to find like-minded bloggers. One fire blogger found me early on and commented on my #6 post, ‘Where there’s fire, there’s smoke.’ She lost everything in a fire the day after Christmas in 2010. Unlike me, she was a renter and had no insurance, so she truly lost everything she had. Surprising to me, she thought it would be so much harder to view the remains and rebuild as I am doing. I think it would be harder to lose all your personal property with no hope of reimbursement. Her blog, besides personal reflections on surviving a fire, has a lot of useful information about taking inventories of your possessions, facts about fire, books on surviving fires, and more. Her blog is called ‘Fire Survivors: Healing after a Fire’: http://firesurvivors.wordpress.com/
Another interesting blog is ‘Burning Down The House: Essays on the Poetry of Loss.’ This fire experience wasn’t even the blogger’s first fire. As a child in 1969, her family house burned down and she writes about the effect that had on her parents. Then on Labor Day 2010, her own house near Boulder, CO burned down in the Four Mile Canyon Fire, which destroyed 169 homes, including hers. I’m still reading through her story, but I find it incredible the stories of people who truly lost everything. It makes me grateful that my house is still standing and that many of the irreplaceable items, like photographs, survived. Her blog: http://www.burningdownthehouseblog.com/
One blogger began her family’s story as a way of keeping friends and family informed about the aftermath of the fire and the rebuilding of their house. The fire burned their entire house to the ground in 2008 in Idaho, so they had to start from scratch. In addition to her personal observations going through this, she has some useful information about fire safety, home inventories, and more. Check it out: http://www.lifeafterthefire.com/
I’m sure there are some more out there, and I hope to connect with them eventually. Reading about how others have coped and are still coping is helpful, I find. It also gives me some perspective about my own experience. This past spring there have been too many news stories about disastrous tornados and flooding and fires and many, many people losing homes. Joplin, a town that my father lived in as a boy, was especially hard hit. I know that my house fire doesn’t rank in the top ten catastrophes of the country or even in my state. It’s good to keep that in mind when I’m feeling overwhelmed and depressed and even angry about my situation. I realize that being philosophical and zen about it won’t make it all go away, but I’m slowly, very slowly, learning to view my house fire more calmly. No one had major injuries. I do have insurance. It will be restored. It will all be ok, eventually. And so will I. Eventually.