It's an Oklahoma thing. ... Watching tornadoes.
The tornado hit just a short distance from our town.
Really, we all know that tornadoes happen. It's just the way of it around here. We live in an area called Tornado Alley, by example. We take precautions...but somewhere deep down inside, We just never think that it's going to actually happen, That a tornado is actually going to materialize.
Sunday night, The Professer was called up for deployment to Joplin as part of a search and rescue operation. Don't look - most of the press went to the search dogs. They were the stars of the show. He was gone from Sunday night until Tuesday evening.
I didn't go to church Sunday night because I didn't feel good. (Come to find out, I had a sinus infection). He called and asked me to load up his car.
I did. He came home, dropped off the kids, kissed me goodbye, and booked it to the deployment site.
Joplin. The pictures are amazing. The professor described the scene to me after he came home. But really? The news coverage was enough to make your heart stop. I watched the news, looking for signs of him as his team walked over the rubble looking to make rescues.
The one thing The Professor said was that the people of Joplin were amazingly generous. Amazingly hospitable. (Unlike New Orleans where teams were cussed and shot at. )
While he was in Joplin, we prayed for him. We prayed for Joplin. I still didn't feel good.
The weathermen here kept telling us that Tuesday would be our turn. A dry line was going to push through. Storms would build and could possibly bring long track tornadoes. Goody. Just what you want to hear. NOT.
Tuesday came and my mom stayed with the kids so I could go to the doctor and the pharmacy. Yay for doctors and pharmacies!!! Not to mention Sonic's drive-thru with diet coke. Mom goes home and we both agree that we'll watch the weather.
She lives in a mobile home and I live in the middle of nowhere. Tornadoes don't like either of those. After looking at the Joplin destruction, it's apparent a direct hit from a tornado does not do good things to a house.
Whether it was because I didn't feel good - whether it was my emotional side NOT being balanced by the Professor's reality checks -- I felt the atmosphere.
I felt the tension.
I didn't like it.
I had to be the only strong, staid person in the house.
I didn't feel good.
HOWEVER - I knew I had a choice.
You see? I have a son who tends to over react. He knows what a tornado is...he's only 7 and he's had to spend some time in the bathroom. Even if I didn't feel good - I had to take care of them.
I had to take care of me.
The way you silence fear is to give attention to faith. - Bill Johnson.
Every time I would start to get tense or anxious - I spoke to my atmosphere.
From Psalm 91.. "No disaster shall befall our tent.."
Then I started thinking - well, but what if half the house were gone?
I can't afford to lose school books.
NO disaster shall befall our tent.
I have stories and unfinished manuscripts.
NO Disaster shall befall our tent.
It became my conversation of the day. Because I had to counter any tension and fear with Faith - otherwise I would become fearful. Or Fear-filled, instead of faith-filled. It's just a fact.
We made plans. The one the Professor can attest to, after walking in Joplin, Interior rooms and bathrooms, really DO stand up better than other parts of the house during a tornado. Our hidey hole is the bathroom.
Tornadoes did start coming our way. From the west...and I was glued to the TV (and my book) and the kids watched phineas and Ferb on the internet. I had my backpack filled with my laptop, a manuscript I need to pick up the redmarks on, my passport, my kindle and a charger. The kids had games.
Just as I was thinking things over, The Professor walked in and said, "Everyone in the bathroom."
He'd seen a lowering cloud just to our East.
The news had mentioned nothing about it. Of course, the lovely digital TV thing we have going sans cable is a pain. We lost the signal. I lost Cell strength - and we were stuck in our bathroom while they told us about everything else going on around us.
It was frustrating not knowing. It was frustrating having cranky, slightly frightened kids. The professor ate his lunch and I made breaks from the bath to check the screens and the internet.
When the sirens went off again, sounding the all clear, we were already out of the bathroom and checking the radars on-line. It was weird how we were ignored by the storm trackers.
But maybe it was atmospheric.
I do have that authority.
Even if I don't feel good.
Still...I look at the pictures of the damage done and think...would it have been better to have a safe room?? Or would I have put my faith in that?
It's a question I'll be asking for awhile, I think.