Cleaning up my studio today, I found a pad at the bottom of a pile of paper that was my "To Do" list on October 9, 2017, the day my house and a few thousand others burned down. I've advised survivors of subsequent fires that the best way to get your head straight is make a list, check items off of it, and make another list tomorrow. Repeat. That's how you get through the days with purpose.
This was mine. It's eclectic. The fundamentals: Find a place to stay (not yet checked off). Clothes and shoes. Dog food. Stop the mail so it doesn't get delivered to a melted mailbox.
"Death binder" is what we called the file with our will and estate planning, which we needed to reconstruct. The "Tom" name blurred at the bottom is the financial guy who handles our retirement accounts. I figured he needed to know. (He didn't really.)
Pink tabs on the side mark pages with info on FEMA and the Small Business Administration, which offered low-interest loans to fire victims.
The one that really jumps out at me is "Girl Scout meeting." Why the heck were we worried about that?! I asked Karen, who has stayed involved with Scouting looong after our daughters aged out, and she pointed out that the fire was on a Monday: meeting night. She wanted me to make sure everyone knew she wouldn't be there.
You want to know what goes through someone's mind when their house disappears? This is it.