Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Going out with a bang!

So, 2010 couldn't just end quietly and peacefully around here. No, it wanted to go out with a bang. Or, in this case, a lot of thunder, lightening, rain, and a tornado. We had New Year's Eve plans with the Arants. We were going to grab dinner and then come back to our house to play games and hang out. The day had been very warm and windy. I knew it was supposed to be cold the next day, so I was a little worried about the weather all day. A warm balmy day followed immediately by a cold day almost always = Tornadoes! And maybe I've mentioned it before (just once or twice - ha!) that I'm absolutely terrified of bad weather. So, that evening as we were getting ready to meet David and Rebekkah for dinner, the tornado siren went off. I tried to stay pretty calm at first. Just because the siren is going off doesn't necessarily mean a tornado is coming toward you.

When we turned the weather on, though, my calm went out the window pretty quickly. The local station that we tuned into was having some technical difficulties. David said it seemed like everyone who knew what they were doing must have been off for the holiday, and the station was being run by interns that night. Ha! I don't know if the weather people were just stressed out because the wrong maps were being put up and their email kept popping up on the screen while they were trying to talk about the weather, but they were pretty much frantic. We should have just switched to another channel, but we didn't. At one point, one of the meteorologists was pretty much yelling, "This is a tornado EMERGENCY! Get your kids and your pets and go to your safe place immediately!!" To make matters worse, she also said that there was a large tornado on the ground, and it was headed right toward our neighborhood. Yes, she specifically mentioned our neighborhood. That wasn't exactly what I was hoping to hear when we turned on the TV.

The worst part was that from the time we first found out that the bad weather was coming our way to the time it actually got here was about 30 minutes. It was AWFUL just waiting, knowing it was coming. I didn't handle it well. I was freaking out. Poor Aubrey had no clue what was going on. I was really trying to hold it together for her, but I didn't do a very good job. She looked at David and asked, "Is her crying?" Ha! David did a great job of talking to Aubrey and explaining what was going on a little bit. She couldn't really understand why we were sitting in the bathroom surrounded by pillows, but she was SO good throughout the whole ordeal. She just sat there calmly and didn't seem to mind that her mother was acting like a crazy person and her baby brother was SCREAMING inconsolably.

Yes, Jude was screaming. That definitely didn't help my stress level. Poor baby was just so tired and hot. We were cramped into our little half bath (because it's the only interior room we have) and it was so hot and stuffy in there. He was pretty much laying in my lap so that I could protect him as much as possible, if need be. We couldn't hear the TV from the bathroom, so we really didn't know what was going on (probably a good thing). My parents were watching TV from their house and let us know when it was safe to come out.

Needless to say, we ended up being fine. Thank the LORD for His protection. We didn't even have any damage. Apparently the worst of the storm ended up missing us. As we were sitting in the bathroom waiting for it to hit, I told David that if we lived through that, I really REALLY wanted a storm shelter ASAP. He said he would look into it. I'm holding him to it. (Don't forget, Honey. Ha!) Spring is usually when we get the most tornadoes, so I think I'm going to need my hole in the ground by then. David is worried I'm going to sleep in the thing every night if there is a cloud in the sky. Nah.

I asked David after the fact if he was scared. He said he was a little nervous, but he wasn't really scared because there was absolutely nothing he could do about it. He said that if a tornado really came right to our house, it could pick the whole house up, including the slab. So, to him, there is no point in being scared because it's completely out of our hands. Well, the fact that it could pick our whole house up is exactly why I am terrified! It's funny that what caused one of us to be less scared is the very thing that terrified the other. Thankfully, I know that God is sovereign over all things, and that does bring me a measure of calm in situations like that. (I should trust more, though, I know!)

Just for fun, here is our little "storm shelter." (Yes, we still have those awful bunnies on the wall.)
Jude and I were under the mattress and David and Aubrey were right beside us with cushions ready to put over their heads. I had a major crick in my neck, but I wasn't about to come out of there until it was over!

To add to the drama, when we finally got ready to go meet the Arants for dinner, our street was FLOODED! We live in a cud-de-sac, and there was literally several feet of water in the street. We couldn't get our car out of the driveway without getting water in the car. So we had to wait even longer for it to stop raining and the water to go down. Thankfully, it went down quickly, and we did eventually get there. Obviously, we were pretty late after all that. We were honestly just happy to be alive and well, though!


Big Jen said...

Am laughing so hard reading this. The most complicated New Years EVER!! Glad you're all safe.

Courtney said...

What a crazy night. Glad to hear you guys are safe.