At 2:46 pm on Friday, March 11, 2011 - a 9.0 magnitude earthquake had us shaking, rattling and rolling! There had been SEVERAL smaller earthquakes in the days prior. Check out the map of where we live and the current earthquake total (it was over 500 at time of posting) Please understand that we are used to having several earthquakes here in Japan. There are 100's each year. Friday's was INCREDIBLY strong. This is how far away we live from the epicenter. We live on Misawa Air Base.
Elijah and I were at school (thankfully students were dismissed 11 min before the earthquake). Elijah was shaken - he actually held my hand, We were evacuated from the school building and we went home - where Eddie had been. Thankfully we had no major damage.
The electricity went out during the earthquake to 5 million people in Japan. We had no idea that there were tsunamis happening and the enormous loss of life. We were reunited and thankful to be alive. We drove to check on our friends that live off base, The Rice's. There have been after shocks about every 35-45 min since Friday.
We came home about 6:00 pm, took cold showers, read a book to Elijah and tried to go to sleep. It took about an hour to fall asleep. About 8:00 we had another 7. something quake. This time I was freaked out! Eddie grabbed Elijah and we went to the living room. Eddie put our shoes and coats by the front door and I made soft pallets for us on the living room floor. Elijah didn't want to sleep alone now. He held my hand all night long - every 40 min we were shaken awake and he would squeeze my hand tighter. We talked through the night about what he was scared of we reassured him we were safe.
PRAISE GOD FOR DAYLIGHT! I think that was the longest night of my entire life. We had friends come over on Saturday - our house was warmer than there's because we live higher than they do. Having them around was great as well - it allowed us to fellowship.
We still hadn't watched the news - Saturday the water went out too. We left to go to a family support place to use the Internet to let everyone know we were safe. When I talked to my Dad he started telling me about some of the things that were going on. Again, I am thankful - we are all safe and I am glad we hadn't watched the news actually!
Power was restored late Sunday night and Internet was restored Tuesday night.
In all this I KNOW that I have been blessed with:
1. family and friends that pray! I mean P.R.A.Y.E.D without ceasing - not only for us but for our host nation!
2. God ordained our steps that week:
- Eddie switched shifts just for that week - HE was home during the earthquake - so we didn't have to wait to see if each other was okay
- we had meat, bread, water in the house before an HOUR before the earthquake. Eddie went to the commissary to buy bread at 1:00 - the quake was at 2:43!
3. Elijah is such a strong, young man! He was ready to sleep in his own bed on Saturday night :)
4. The Japanese people are incredible! They are polite, rule-abiding, peaceful people. There is no looting, no fights, no vandalism AT ALL! NOT like Hurricane Katrina......something to think about
More info to come.......I'll keep you all updated!