Part of the reason for this is certainly the insane storm season we've had here already, and all the horrific tornadoes so early in the year. But I think another reason I am so much more nervous about storms, specifically tornadoes, is the fact that I have children now and I just can't stand the thought of anything happening to them.
We had the first major storm/tornado threat in our part of Ohio a little over a week ago. I believe it was a Tuesday night, sometime after eight, when the sirens went off. Harper was already out cold for the night. I started yelling for her to “getup!getup!getup!getup!” which she reacted to by not moving or blinking or giving any other sign that she could hear anything. So I had myself a little Sophie’s Choice moment when I debated which child I should leave to the mercy of the tornado while I ran the other one down to the basement. Since I was already holding the baby, he got to be ferried to the basement first. Then I ran back up for Harper - thankfully our house had not been leveled while I saved the youngest child - carried her downstairs, and deposited her safely in an armchair. As an afterthought, I ran back up for Harper’s epi pens (Because the food at the shelter where we’d have to stay after the house had been leveled might not be safe and then where would we be?), the diaper bag, and my cell phone. And then we waited.
Michael was surprisingly content to let me entertain him as he lay on the floor, while I kept half an eye on the fuzzy reception of the local weather report on the basement television.
Harper passed the time doing some sort of bizarre sleep yoga. The next morning she had no memory of being in the basement. (And, yes, she still wears a diaper to bed. BIG SIGH. That is for another post.) As luck would have it, my camera was in the diaper bag and I was able to document Harper’s strange position changes.
Fortunately we all survived that evening unscathed.
We also missed the worst of the severe weather which cut through our path to my parents' house last Friday. Although the storms did blow two semi trucks over, turning I-65 into a parking lot for nearly half an hour. At least Harper got to see her first ever real-life rainbow while we were sitting in the resulting traffic.
The first Saturday we were here we all ended up in the basement as tornadoes and severe thunderstorms swept this area of Wisconsin.
Sunday we drove back from my aunt's house in torrential downpours, during which I was sure our car was going to be washed off the road.
The weather last night and this evening has sent me scurrying around making sure there were working flashlights and putting needed items in the basement "just in case."
And we are very fortunate not to be in a town where severe flooding is occuring. Just yesterday a friend was going to drive out from Madison to see us but couldn't because, oops, the freeway is under water.
Mother Nature? We've had enough, okay?