Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Chiquita Smith, 34

Very confusing and complicated are words that come to my mind when I think about my life after Katrina. It’s very difficult to respond to something that you’re still going through. Some people seem to think that everyone in New Orleans needed to move away. And they feel that we should just jump right in to our new lives and just be happy. I have family and friends that help to complete my life that are now miles and miles away.

My business as a hairstylist no longer exists because of Katrina. I have bills that are going to keep piling up because of Katrina. I can’t find contractors to renovate my home because there are so many people in New Orleans that are trying to do the same thing. And all of this is because of Katrina.

One thing that is positive: I’ve had a chance to meet some great people, people that genuinely care. I’d like to say that I possess some of those same characteristics, too. It feels good to know that there are more people in the world who really care.

My life after Katrina just relies on where God wants to take me. I’ve prayed for myself and anyone who has experienced this tragedy. I’m still dealing with things that are beyond my control, but you just grin and bear it.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit