By Shefa Ali
It was an extremely hectic day with a lot of work to finish, I had a terrible headache, it was around 6:45pm by the time I wrapped things up. I really had no energy to cook, so suggested to my husband that we grab something for dinner on the way home. All I wanted to do was get some food in my stomach, get rid of my headache and go to sleep.
As we finished our dinner, I received the call from our maintenance department of our tower, telling me that water was leaking from our house. The 10 minute drive home seemed to last an eternity, and all I wanted to see was if everything was ok.
As the elevator door opened and water trickled in, I thought surely this water is not from our home. We ran to our apartment door to find eight of the members of maintenance team sweeping and bailing out buckets and bins of endless water.
We were told that the flood occurred because the pipe in the water heater that was supposed to be fixed that morning had burst. I hope you never have to experience your home being flooded, but maybe you can relate my story to another situation in your life, and benefit from my reflection.
I know this and I live my life by this, but the flood was a powerful reminder that stuff is just stuff. Some of our furniture was damaged, the water reached the kitchen, living room, dining room and my bedroom, a lot of stuff got soaked through. While I love my stuff, I quickly remembered that there is very little I really need to live.
It’s a good idea to document your belongings and safe guard your important paperwork. Take pictures or videos of everything. If you lose some or all of your contents in a flood, you will be asked for an inventory of everything you lost. Take it from me, it’s not easy to remember all the items in your home. I recommend walking through your home with your phone and video-recording every room. Open the closets, drawers, and cabinets, and you will be amazed at how much you have. Then make sure you store this documentation in a secure remote location. As for paperwork, try to keep copies offsite and the originals in a fireproof safe.
Whether your home is damaged by a burst pipe (and I hope it never is!) or a slow drip under your kitchen sink, the sooner you take action, the less severe the damage.
Our lives and safety are priceless and irreplaceable. Lost material wealth can be replaced over time through different—albeit challenging—means. However, a lost life can never be regained. Thank God for our safety.
* The author is a consultant and coach. Instagram handle: @miss_shefa, Website: missshefa.com
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