Saturday, June 23, 2012

Belated Family Friday Post: Rolling Thunder

Yesterday we had thunderstorms all day long, along with several brown-outs and one black-out, so I didn't turn on any electronics just to be safe. Hence the belated post.

When we have kids, out of all the things you worry about, one of the last is what they might be afraid of. After all, we are likely many years away from our own childhood fears. Shawn is afraid of zombies, just like me (I still am), but he is not afraid of thunderstorms; he is just annoyed by them because it means he can't play video games. I was never afraid of thunderstorms either, except for one specific time that I can still remember.

A thunderstorm hit while I was at the Acme with my dad. I can't remember how old I was, maybe five or six. We had to run out to the car with the cart in the pouring rain. My dad got me and the groceries safely in the car, but then he shut me into the  car and went to take the empty cart back himself.  Now this was years before anyone thought to put cart returns in the middle of the parking lot, so he had to go all the way back to the store. It was dark and raining too hard for me to see outside of the car. I only knew that there was thunder and lightning and my dad was in the middle of a wide open parking lot with a metal shopping cart. I was terrified that he wouldn't come back, that lightning would hit him and he would die. He made it back of course; the chances of him getting hit were more astronomical than my child's mind could comprehend. I'm sure he was only gone for a few minutes at most, but it felt like an hour to me as I was caught up in the fear.

Oddly enough, this experience didn't change how I feel about thunderstorms. I loved them before and I still love them now. I always found them exciting to watch, and I love how clean the world feels afterward, like the very air has cleared out.

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