Cherise on The Waldo Canyon Fire and the Rebirth of Her Home

On June 23, 2012, a completely unexpected devastation happened to the beautiful community of Colorado Springs, Colorado. The Waldo Canyon Fire burned approximately 29 square miles of Pike National Forest and parts of Colorado Springs, including some residential neighborhoods. There were 346 homes completely destroyed by the fiery blaze and smoke, causing extensive damage somewhere in the tune of $453.7 million dollars regarding insurance claim payouts. But beyond the statistical evidence of how a fire can leave a community to feel the dark emptiness from utter destruction, there is another side of the story that is told by Cherise Selley within this compelling video clip.

As a top Colorado Springs Realtor, who is also the Broker/Owner of Selley Group Real Estate, LLC, Cherise Selley vulnerably shares some keen insights about what it means to “stand firm” and to “remain planted” against some overwhelming challenges to your home and lifestyle, as what occurred with the Waldo Canyon Fire during the hot summer of 7 years ago.

Cherise Selley somehow mustered the courage to create a video about the progression of the fire as it rumbled over the front range mountains and started to burn the homes and legacies of those who occupied the Mountain Shadows neighborhoods. What Cherise chronicled as post-apocalyptic events unfolding before her very own eyes also described her psychological state of shock and terror that unwelcomely invaded her emotional space of safety and security.

Though an evaluation of the aftermath from the fire revealed open spaces showcasing hundreds of homes scorched to the ground and the smell of billowing smoke signaling the reality that everything was going to be radically different, as well as difficult, was no exaggeration. Yet, Cherise Selley and her husband, Gordon, decided to remain rooted within the same neighborhood that garnished so many wonderful memories of where they raised their family over the years.

For Cherise Selley, the Waldo Canyon Fire shed layers of insignificance from her soul and shined some light onto her innermost being. The fire burned away some of her material emphases, and in turn, Cherise realized that she needed to put more of an eternal mindset into practical action for her life. Simply speaking, she answered the question, “Why,” as she put new habits of creativity and faith into action.

Staying rooted helped to clear Cherise’s mind from all the negative and hopeless things that the fire tried to bring to her, as well as to the community. And instead, she started out the journey of transformation based on the bluish/green color from the Emerald Coast of Destin, Florida, which has given much peace and life to her. To combat the horrors of the fire, she thought to herself, why not counterbalance the representation of fire with the power of water? And that’s how the renovation process began on her home.

The decision to “stand firm” was rooted in her faith. And to decorate with an attitude of thanksgiving opened new layers of priority-setting and cleansing of the heart. Succinctly put, Cherise Selley deposited love into her home. 

When referencing home, this process involved every room of the house with upgrades and finishes, and relative to her life, this undertaking required honest inspection and faithful change toward life-giving aspects. Cherise learned that all of us suffer from various challenges in life. And you have the choice to remain stagnant in a pool of misery, or you can do something beneficial for yourself and for others.

Some of the lessons applied to the home included to remain in the home and to reinvest in it through beautifying and to acknowledge that her empty-nest home was already a clear representation of downsizing and simplifying. In a nutshell, her home became a better place of hospitality and life. And this way of thinking also opened unforeseen doors of making additional wise real estate investments and healthy plans for her future retirement.

Within a few years after the Waldo Canyon Fire, it’s amazing how far the Mountain Shadows neighborhood has progressed. You can’t even tell that a fire had torn apart the area, except for some views of the foothills.

And regarding the choices you can make regarding the trials of life, it’s amazing how the miracles of transformational change can occur when you roll up your sleeves and put into action the new steps of belief and renewed thinking. In essence, it’s astonishing to witness how our real estate stories correlate with our real estate choices…