It’s hard to watch as Italy floods, to watch a loved one going through a crisis, to see the pain and despair on the faces of people you love.

This is what is unfolding in our beloved Italy. Currently Italy is going through devastating floods with lives lost and it’s people thrown into chaos. It leaves a helpless feeling in the soul, and a drive to make some kind of difference no matter how small.

Natural disasters are not new to Australians.

On February 7th 2009 fires raged out of control across Victoria. When the phone rang, it was my Mum starting to panic. My brother and his family live in Kinglake and she hadn’t heard from them. I remember telling her not to be silly, the fire’s were nowhere near them….

We soon found out that not only were they near but racing at high speed up the valley straight toward them.

I never want to feel that fear again.

We were glued to the TV and waiting waiting for the phone to ring. We heard nothing. We were powerless to help them, they had to fight this battle alone. The fire raged all around them and they survived.

Black Saturday claimed 173 lives.

Even with all the preparations in place it was just dumb bloody luck that kept them safe.

December 2010 and it’s raining. Steady fine rain that went for the entire month with out stopping. Disbelief and shock watching the torrents rage through the streets in Toowoomba and the Lockyer Valley. People clinging to rooftops, swept away as the camera crews filmed from helicopters.

The entire state seemed to be under water, then the City of Brisbane flooded. What was left when the water fell was a death toll made up of heartbreak. Each face is embedded in my memory, the little boy who told rescuers to save his brother first and was swept to his death along with his Mum. The tiny girl swept from her mothers arms, impossibly heart breaking.

Stories are coming out of the floods in Italy and each one clenches my heart tighter and tighter. For those who know the feeling of waiting for that news of missing loved ones, every breaking news story of disaster brings it back.

I hope that you are not waiting, and if you are I send all my love and thoughts…

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