It’s been 12 years since Teri Henley and her husband Hank left their home in New Orleans because of Hurricane Katrina.

“If you had told me 12 years ago that I would be teaching at the University of Alabama, I would have told you you were out of your mind because that just wasn’t on my horizon,”  Henley told WVUA 23.

But today Henley says “the move” was one in the right direction,

“Every year we look back on it you know it was a hard decision to make to leave our friends and our jobs there, but it’s been the best thing that could have possibly happened,” she said.

Henley is sharing her experiences from hurricane Katrina with friends in Houston now as they are under the havoc of hurricane harvey.

“So many of the things they are experiencing are exactly the same as we experienced,” said Henley. “The flooding, of course they are still getting rain. Our flooding was because of the levee break. This is a tragic time. This is a scary time, but if you make it through and keep looking forward, good things can come out of it. It’s hard to see right now.”

12 years out from the storm that took so much from her, Henley still remembers exactly what the uncertainty and devastation feels like. She has this message to those feeling that same hurt right now.

“You always think that you have everything under control but then something like this shows you that this whole idea of control is really an illusion and sometimes it’s important that we hold on to things loosely but hold onto people tightly. That’s what I hope is happening right now that people are loving on each other, caring for each other and if stuff gets destroyed it’s just stuff. It can be replaced. The people and the relationships are what are most important,” Henley said.

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