How a major disaster affected my life and when I finally needed someone to comfort me but almost no one did.

Hey everyone I hope you are all doing great during these Corona times and if not, know that you are not alone.

Before I start talking about my disaster I want to give you a little bit of background. I grew up in a dysfunctional family with a lot of violence and racism. I remember when I was a little boy I needed to move furniture in front of the door together with my mom so my stephfather wouldn't beat my mom. I remember running away to my grandparents telling them that my parents were fighting again and I needed help. I remember my mom parking her car in a dark alley so my stephfather wouldn't find us.

My grandparents were raising me because my mother was young when she had me and wanted to go out sometimes and I didn't mind, I had a tv with lots of VHS tapes and I played Nintendo with my friends and sometimes I would play outside, especially in the summer. The only problem was my grandfathers was mentally ill and he and my grandmother would fight as well, he was convinced that she was a whore and she was poisoning him and most of the time he was telling me all about it and how I shouldn't trust anyone. He had his good days as well, when he took his medication he was a great grandfather.

Fast foreward, at seventeen years old I met my future wife. I later found out she was and is the only person that would always be there for me when I needed her and I could trust her with my life, she is probably the reason why I'm still alive today.

Fast foreward, in my late 20s I was doing what everyone was doing, I had a steady job, a house and money but I was not happy with my life, since I was little I always wanted to discover the world, so my wife and I decided to travel the world for 1 year and enjoy our lives. In 2013 traveled to South East Asia and australia, New-Zealand and a couple of European Countries. When I came back I was determined to quit my job and live in another country. So we did quit our jobs and traveled for another year. Her parents and my parents thought we were losing it but were having the time of our lives.

We started to live in Thailand and worked in a dog shelter, this was the best time of our lives. We managed to live Thailand for more than a year but eventually we decided it wasn't for us. So back to the drawing board, I was very interested in European countries and because I'm originally from a European country it was easy for me to relocate back to Europe. After researching for months we decided that Portugal would be a great country and even though it wasn't perfect, we decided to live in Portugal and see how things would turn out.

We bought ourselves a plot of land and started building our house, surounded by lush green nature and olive and fruit trees I was feeling pretty content, but our luck would change for the worse.

In 2017 it was a very dry year almost no rain since march and we were nearing the end of october. One week to go before the rain would come and I started to see black smoke on the horizon, the summer was already a disaster because of the drought and small forest fires everywhere. I was following the fire online and watching the horizon. Soon I would see pictures on Facebook of people's houses destroyed by fire and people dying and people going after their pets to rescue them but only to be consumed by fire themselves. It turned out three major fronts of fire we're coming our way. I remember seeing no helicopters trying to extinguish the fire nor firemen trying to fight the fronts, the only thing I could see were three big plumes of smoke becoming bigger and bigger. My heart was racing and I started to worry for our safety.

In the evening the first embers started to fall and I was racing like a maniac to stop them from igniting but more and more were coming and eventually I gave up and decided to watch on my balcony. Friends started to call saying they had to run away and we should be packing things because it was heading our way. I was still watching things on my balcony but I had to go inside to prepare. Suddenly our dog started to bark and as soon I opened the curtain of my window the fire was right before my eyes, towering over the big old pinetrees. I told my wife to get the hell out of here and I packed my bags and the dogs and together we went to the car, I remember when I was outside it was like snowing, only this time the snow was red and destorying everything.

I left with the car racing like a James Bond maniac over the street to run away from the red glow but the only thing I could see was 360 degrees of red glow and I could feel the heat and smoke filling my longs. I saw a couple of locals and asked them what we should do and they only reply we got was, " We are lone, nobody will help us, try and find a safe place ", in the meantime gas bottles were exploding all around us and houses would burn and people would scream and dogs that were chained to a tree to protect the land were burned alive. It was absoluut chaos, everyone was praying and saying that WW3 was upon us. Eventually I found a place with a family were we could be in the house together with our dogs and we would fight the thundering rage of fire.

At one point I was in complete panic and I took a kitchen knife and I told my wife if the fire would ever consume us, I would kill myself. And she replied to me " Kill me first " and I looked at ther face and I was in tears telling ther that I loved her and asking God please please give me another chance, I will do better, please help us. The only thing I could remember was seeing this red glow coming closer and closer to the house before I collapsed from shock. But we survived that horrible night.

I woke up in a complete different world, everything was black, burned to ashes. The electricity was off for days so I could not talk to my parents or my wife's parents. The only thing I did was starting to work on the land asap, I needed to fix this and I wasn't looking after myself but I needed to get my frustration, rage etc off my chest and I worked like a madman. Pretty soon the first green grass would show up and we could finaly make contact with our family but I did not recieve the kind of help that I needed. I needed them to tell me I was going to be alright I needed my mother but she was unavailable to me. My brother only left me one message saying how sorry he was this happened to me but that was it, nothing else. We almost died that night and nobody seemed to really understand that.

So I completely shut down and was angry at the world, at the government for letting us rot like we were nothing, telling the media it was a thunderstorm but in fact we all knew it was arson. At my family for not giving me the care that I needed I was in mental rage but on the outside I was laughing like there was no care in the world. Pretty soon my body became toxic, toxic from the rage, food and probably smoke and constant stress. I became sick, so sick that I was no longer thinking about living, I was between the living and the dead. My body was letting me know, enough is enough. Even though my wife was always there for me I felt alone and betrayed. I became severly depressed.

Then I remember that I asked a certain someone to give me a chance so I could change my ways. And one day I said to myself, ok, enough is enough, time for change. I changed my diet and my way of living, I became more at peace with the world. Even though I'm still depressed, I know I have everyone around me who care about me and my rage changed to caring. Don't get me wrong I still have dark days and days were I feel like nothing but they eventually go away. I picked up gardening again and enjoy the sunshine and sometimes I look to the sky above and say thank your for listening to me.

I would like to thank you for reading my story I know it is a lot but believe me I kept it very short. During writing I felt a lot of emotions and sometimes tears but I needed this I needed to get this of my chest. I want to apologies for making any grammar or spelling mistakes due to the fact that English is not my native language.

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