I was speechless. Expressionless. After what I saw, I tried to keep calm and I do not know what to do.

The day before that vicious, wicked storm, I had a dream. It was about that ‘happening’. The wind was so strong and trees were uprooted. There were shingles off the roofs of houses flying in midair. It was like a blender — and it was dark. And at that time, darkness came and it was as if time was faster than ever before. And that random thing that my 10-year-old sister knew how to control a car and drove us to the storm was quite disturbing.  After the dream I had, it was around 10:00 AM. I saw my sisters drooling over the desktop. I said to myself that it’s kind of impossible for a storm to be that strong. Ha, from where I am, trees are sturdy and the houses built to perfection — was what I thought that time. I even made puns about the storm and really hoped that the weather forecast would be bogus (which kind of reminds me of the residents in America laughing off the forecast of Hurricane Katrina).

I was so obnoxious that I didn’t know what’s coming. The night of the same day before that storm, President Benigno Aquino III literally cut off the new broadcast for his national statement to the people who’ll be affected by the storm the next day. While he spoke, at first, I felt nothing. But when he said that the storm is no joke and even mentioned the details about it, I was somewhat afraid. That moment, I planned that I’d rather not sleep (which eventually, I did after watching Shingeki no Kyojin). I then woke up. It was around 3:45 AM in my phone time. The reason why I woke up was because of the wind humming as it inserted through the windows. I was charging my phone overnight so I plugged it off and went back to sleep — after thinking that the storm would be coming in any minute. And at that time, I was already scared. I woke up again. This time, the skies were dark grey. It was 6:00 AM. I never knew that this was going to be it. I unlocked my phone and sounded tunes. As the desperate person I was, I played the song by The Band Perry – If I Die Young

(If I Die Young – The Band Perry)

My aunt came in and she told me that from the Signal # 3 warning from where we’re at, we were already considered Signal # 4 — the highest warning ever. So, I prayed. The playlist went perfect timing when it played If We Ever Needed You by Casting Crowns

(If We Ever Needed You – Casting Crowns)

This was my prayer. I was scared. I was scared. After praying, I was somewhat relieved and back to normal. As soon as the power source went off in preparation of the storm, I’ve got nothing to do. And suddenly, I remembered that I had a Chemistry assignment to finish. It was already 8:00 AM. The rain was stronger but the winds were minimal. We already had our breakfast. By that time, the winds then grew stronger. Stronger that it actually made an electric post spark. Lucky thing, it didn’t catch fire. But then, I was surprised that I was calm. Calm as if nothing happened. It was then 8:30 AM. The winds and rains grew stronger. And I was by the window of the stairs finishing my Chemistry assignment on Half-Reactions. I was annoyed that time. Sheesh, why would she give us homework if we weren’t aware on what to do. But I did my best to solve it.  It was around 8:40 AM and I was finished with the whole thing. As I was finished, the winds grew stronger and stronger that the leaves were dancing to an awesome choreography. We were then situated upstairs. Everyone inside the house (except me) were crying to the fact that the storm almost moved in our home. I was calm. Calm as if nothing happened.

20131108_082438

It was then 9:00 AM. The leaves on the trees were off-track with the wind. Spreading in all directions. I turned my radio on for the news. To my dismay, the track of the storm was still in Eastern Visayas — yet the storm was as strong as ever. There were already various tornados formed in a blink of an eye. The trees were already uprooted

20131108_095325. 20131108_09525720131108_095321

I waited an hour later when I heard my sisters crying. They were downright scared. So I then grabbed the Bible and opened it to Proverbs 4:5-6 It said: Trust in the Lord with all your heart. Lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and he will make your paths straight. That was what He said to all of us. The storm may be as strong as ever but our faith is stronger than ever. *Amen* Now, the radio guy just said: The Typhoon Yolanda would hit the Cebu region by 10:00 AM. Please take cover. I said to myself, “This is it.”

20131108_095523

What you see above is the actual picture during the wrath of the Super Typhoon. It was dark grey. The winds were moving like crazy and the trees were agitating like a washing machine. This was madness. The roof of our neighbor literally landed on ours, the cables were destroyed, and most trees were already uprooted. Birds had a hard time flying and it felt like the inside of a very large tornado with killer speeds. After nearly an hour or so, the winds went back to normal. I thought it was the end. At around 12:00 PM, the winds were stronger once more and there were a lot of flying debris all over the place. Then the radio man said that the typhoon made its landfall five times. This is the end. At past 2:00 PM, the weather was finally back to normal. No electricity. No water. No. I then slept. As I woke up, it was around 11:00 PM. We were relieved that our lines weren’t that much affected and we were still alive. We watched some news. And we were devastated as to what we actually saw.

Storm Surge in Leyte

Poorly-built homes destroyed

Tsunami-effect of Storm Surge off the Eastern Coast

Well, not a good sight

I then realized. We were lucky. We survived. We never had to go to an evacuation center after all. The storm was beyond the strongest in history — and we survived. Thank God. Thank Him for we are all alive. The greatest melancholic scene dragged off me. We were alive. I learned a lot: Trust, holding on, and staying at home. Without these, we would never survive the tragedy. We would have been washed-out by the storm. Or worse, we would be staying in poorly-built evacuation centers *coughs*. Delubyo from her landing. Yolanda (a Spanish phrase that meant ‘I landed’) was another tragedy of the Philippines as of 2013. Mind you, it wasn’t the country’s best. The whole Visayan region was affected. And we haven’t gotten over that strong earthquake. Definitely a tragic experience with a smile on my face for a second. Two days after that storm, we were reminded that we weren’t the only ones affected worse. If we can find a more superlative degree to worse, that would explain the wipe-out of the Easter region in Visayas. Despite all that, we thanked Him. He took care of us.

Please do help the victims (my brothers and sisters) in Northern Cebu, Bohol, Leyte (especially Tacloban) in any way you can. Even a simple prayer would be a great help.  If you want to donate in cash or in kind, please refer to the following http://donate.unicef.ph/campaign/24/typhoon-yolanda-emergency-appeal http://www.redcross.ca/donate/donate-online/donate-to-the-typhoon-haiyan-fund

“As we are trying to stand our ground, the Lord will always keep us firm.” God bless 🙂

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