by Ruth T Hill 10-8-2013
There was a very different plan for the first post on my new blog about my journey of exploration & learning in natural health & balance. I expected that it would be one of the other drafts that I had started about: stress in our world today, or the food supply crisis, natural growing of our own food, food as medicine, natural options for life and beauty, or any one of many possibilities. But, circumstances changed that.
Yes, it is about stress, but from a different angle, one that seems most appropriate at this time.
Since moving to Colorado, my favorite way to relieve stress and relax has been to take a drive in the country, be with nature, and just explore. This drive was almost always through a canyon just minutes away, through amazing walls of rock, where one might see bighorn sheep and open, sunny areas, where one might see elk, or deer around any curve, and then to the town and wilderness beyond. I knew it well, having traveled through it hundreds of times, noting changes in seasons, atmospheric conditions, clouds and mist – always beautiful, always the relaxing sounds of nature, a true get-away.
That highway, 34, through the Big Thompson Canyon has been destroyed in the recent flooding in Colorado, There will be NO more peaceful drives through the canyon for the foreseeable future. The beautiful town of Estes Park, at the other end, has been cut off & isolated, since the three highways into town were destroyed. Many other towns were destroyed, damaged, and evacuated. It is difficult to comprehend the extent of the widespread damage from this “1000” year flood and the complexities of the problems left behind.
I have personally walked extensively around many of these towns, so I had my own images & memories as each one was being hit by the water, and very much empathize with the people. It was from the beautiful little town of Lyons, that we first saw films of the destructive force of water. Then, Jamestown was destroyed. Boulder suffered a great deal after having 18” of rain in 2 to 3 days. Niwot suffered, as did other small towns nearby, as well as Longmont. The list goes on and on.
Many of you may have seen films of the incredible power of water as it washed away homes, vehicles, trees, propane tanks, and much more. Many people will not be able to get back to their homes to see what is left there for a long time. There is no access, and of course the danger of rockslides exists. It’s incomprehensible to imagine all of the problems and challenges that towns and individuals have faced, are dealing with, and will be facing as a result of the destruction.
Loveland suffered destruction to both the east & west ends, but not so much in the center, where I am very fortunate to live. Flooding, with even more toxic water, has also devastated the towns and farms on the flat lands to the east.
Maybe you have seen films of the heroic people who rescued & helped others, often risking their own lives. There were remarkably few people who died in the flood. Rescuers, often by helicopter, brought out people and their pets as well. Having to leave pets behind causes a great amount of stress on survivors in disaster situations, so it was gratifying to see that many didn’t have that added stress, as well. Many people went to extraordinary efforts to help their neighbors and rescue their horses and cattle.
You may have also seen the video of the convoy of heavy equipment and a rock crusher crawling up the treacherous Trail Ridge Road through the Rockies, because it was the only way to get close to the destruction. People on both sides of the canyon have been separated from their work and homes. Many lives have been changed, as has the landscape, for a very long time.
FEMA, the National Guard, and other disaster organizations and shelters, and many hard-working volunteers have come to the area. All of this helps a great deal, but, it can never be enough: Lifelong homes have been destroyed; Even if they want to, some people may not be allowed to build where their houses once stood; Insurance companies don’t pay for lost vehicles or houses until there is proof of damage and some people are unable to get to their property, to even photograph whatever is left. Some are waiting to see if their houses will be sprayed with orange as “condemned”. Others have to make a decision about staying in an environment where everything is extremely toxic. I’m sure the stresses are endless.
The destruction of what was once my beautiful, stress-relief journey has caused an unimaginable amount of stress on countless people. This is extreme STRESS, which has a tremendous affect on people’s health, short and long term both. One of the effects of stress is immune deficiency, which is an important consideration in the cleaning up of toxic mud.
Bless them all. - Ruth T. Hill
Please come back to my blog as I move on to natural health posts on the Journey to BALANCE in Health and Life. More information on stress and how to get help for STRESS will follow.