We Lost it All in a Colorado Wildfire, Like 500 Others

You never think it’ll happen to you. Yes, we knew that because we lived in a forest, some day there would be wildfires. But it didn’t consume my thoughts. I certainly didn’t prepare. I never expected to be a Colorado wildfire survivor.

Black Forest Sunset

My name is Laura Benjamin. On June 11, 2013, the Black Forest Wildfire took two lives, burned over 14,000 acres and destroyed more than 500 homes and businesses, including mine. One minute everything’s normal and the next minute, it’s not.

Once you absorb the shock and start to adapt to a whole new world, it becomes clear that the trigger event itself was just the beginning. From then on, it’s like a marathon. The changes don’t stop. You can’t sit back and say to yourself, “Well, there! THAT’s over and done with!” Because it’s not – there’s always more to come.

How about you? Have you faced your own personal “wildfires” in life? Have you grappled with non-negotiable change at home, with work, in your career or business? My guess is you have. I’m sure you’ve learned a few things about resilience and how to rise from the ashes, so to speak.

My story is no different than many other “survivors” who struggle through personal or professional tragedy and non-negotiable change. And I certainly can’t speak for all of us. But I hope my Wildfires of Change book and the analogy of the wildfire will help others rebound, persevere and build resilience.

Please contact me to discuss the book, an interview or speaking engagement on wildfire survivors, how to build resilience and cope with change.

Visit our Wildfire Survivors website for tips and resources.

Best regards, Laura Benjamin