As a day of remembrance on 9/11 I am taking moments today to truly reflect on what it means to serve.
On 9-11 our first responders, emergency personnel and countless selfless folks ran right into the crisis and did everything they could to help others. All the way up to risking and losing their very own lives! Sacrificing their future to help others.
9-11 was a horrifying loss on an epic scale. I can still remember the silence of our skies for a period of time after that. Where I live the sound of freedom is oft debated, but I appreciate that sound! It means we are alive to fight yet another day.
Getting back to first responders though and their willingness to head right into the fire, the flame, the dust, the flood or the myriad of crises we face as a society never cease to amaze me.
They are first in and they are often called on to respond situations most of us can never even imagine.
Firefighters in particular are called upon to respond to hoarding situations where the extra accumulation of stuff can change fire behavior and burn patterns. Sometimes fire personnel cannot enter a heavily hoarded home as there is no way to actually get into the home.
Often entering the home may involve busting a window and even cutting into the roof to get into the residence to attempt to rescue a resident. Once they can get in to the home, but can find their egress and ingress blocked by an avalanche of stuff. They may have had a way in that they can see, but if an avalanche occurs, they are not able to see a way out due to the smoke and can become trapped.
Another words hoarding can kill.
That means the person that hoards and any family members living in the hoard. It can also include pets or animals living in the hoard. This can also impact anyone responding to the fire in a hoarded home. Fire can also spread from one residence to another causing damage to surrounding people and properties.
This is why we cannot ignore hoarding behaviors and issues. This is why we cannot placate someone that hoards. We can approach with empathy, harm reduction and encourage the person to seek mental health treatment. This is why we must talk with them and have a conversation about who they really are as people.
But ultimately we should NOT be silent and turn away. There are hoarding task forces being formed in many communities. There are online resources as well.
If you don’t know what to say, find someone to ask. Request a presentation or workshop. Connect on social media with someone like me. Don’t wait. Someone’s life could be at stake.
Homes Are For Living, LLC is a Veteran Woman Owned & Operated business located in Oak Harbor on Whidbey Island, WA. We focus on reducing clutter and restoring peace of mind for folks struggling with extreme clutter. You can connect with Tammi Moses via Email: firstname.lastname@example.org , on Twitter and on Facebook.
We look forward to helping you meet your clutter free goals!