I thought we had escaped the terror of spring storms when we'd hardly had as much as a lighting bolt by the time school was out. No one mentioned we'd spend June listening to sirens wail and branches crack and break as Mother Nature unleashed her fury on us.
Last night was one of those long nights. When the rumbles began around midnight, I tried to block them out as best I could. I tossed and turned and tried to occupy my mind. Soon the National Weather Service was blaring its buzz from my radio, so I decided to perk up my ears and listen.
About the time the creepy, automated robot voice said, "...Service has issued.." BAM. The power was gone. Utter darkness. Silence. Thunder. I slipped into the hall and peeked at Chloe. She hadn't moved. Surely she'd be crying for me any minute. She hates storms. And she REALLY hates the dark.
I fumbled through the dark house, my pulse a little faster than normal. I knew I needed to report my outage if I had any hope of having electricity again. Already the rooms were becoming muggy and warm. I finally found the phone book and dialed my cell. No service. I danced around the living room with my arm outstretched, trying to locate a signal.
BOOOOOM!!!!!!!!!! A bolt of lighting illuminated the sky and thunder roared. Branches blew and cracked outside the window. I began to 'what-if.'
"What if that was a tornado warning on the radio? Maybe the power being out affects the sirens. What if there is a tornado? Maybe it HIT the siren and it can't go off! I'm going to die!"
I darted to Chloe's room and "accidentally" kicked her bed. Oops. She didn't stir. "Psst. Chloe. Chloe, it's storming. You should come in Mommy's room so you aren't scared."
"Mumb lumm eat somfin," she mumbled sleepily in reply. I was pretty sure she was saying she was scared to death and needed to cuddle up next to me. I threw her over my shoulder, her body limp and lifeless, and tossed her onto my bed.
I finally got through to the power company. And just to be safe, I called in for all my neighbors, too. I was sweating. I tossed and turned, jolting at each crack of thunder. I pulled Chloe closer. "It's ok, Mommy is here. We're safe," I whispered to her unconscious ear. She responded with a shallow snore.
Finally I worried my mind enough that it shut down and drifted off to sleep. The comfortable buzz of night time noises returned, and the house cooled again as the power was restored a few hours later. My phone rang this morning. It was my mother.
"How did you guys do in the storm last night? Were you ok?" (She knows my terror over storms).
"Well, Chloe got pretty scared and came in my bed, but I was fine..."