Tuesday, May 21, 2013

pray for moore

i was going to start a new series yesterday called my life monday, but i was a little on edge//preoccupied//freaked out. so how about a tornado tuesday? let's start at the beginning:

i was sitting at the piano with my student, circling the three black keys in his piano book when i heard it. ever so softly. my very first thought was: they don't usually test the tornado sirens at night. my second thought was: is this for real? tornadoes don't happen too often in fort smith. my third thought: ssshhh, {student}, do you hear that? he didn't hear it, so we kept going. until i heard my neighbors outside. we went to the front door and then the sound of the siren was easily recognizable.

i didn't know what to do. i had never been in this situation. it would have been a completely different situation if brock had not left an hour ago and wasn't thirty minutes away with a car that wasn't working at his parents' house. it would have also be quite different if i were not the adult in the situation and an 8 year old was depending on me to keep him safe. 

i freaked out.

but calmly, i didn't let {student} know i was freaking out and calmly called my husband. he immediately said to get to the nearest shelter, so we started unplugging everything, i grabbed the emergency radio from the closet as {student} started putting his piano books back in his bag. and then there was silence. the sirens were gone and brock said that we would be fine if we stayed. so we tried to get back to our lesson, but neither of us could focus. i called {student's} mom and she was on her way.

he left soon after and i was home alone. i decided to do something to get my mind off the storm, texting one of my sweet church girls who was making sure i was ok {weird... i should have been checking on her. i'm lame}.

an hour or so later, brock called to see how i was. i was fine. he told me to turn on the radio so i could be updated. i did. the storm was right outside of fort smith and severe warnings were in effect for my county and the county he was currently in. brock couldn't come home because of the car. i was alone.

he told me to grab some clothes for tomorrow and leave right away. my heart started racing as i scrambled through his drawers and then mine. i made sure i grabbed the radio in case i ended up stranded. silly? i don't know. i called my mom and dad in arizona to let them know what was going on and that i was safe. i wasn't sure if they new the storm was even in our area. i uttered a quick prayer, praying i would make it safely. then got in the truck with a quick look at the still night sky. the stillness scared me. i knew it would be still right before it hit.

then the radio was on from my driveway on out. the severe weather warning list kept adding county after county. severe weather warning until 9:15, then 9:30, 10:00, 10:45.

no one was on the road, it made me feel even more alone. i felt like i was the only idiot out driving. my forearms and hand muscles started aching from the strong grip i had on the steering wheel. every ten seconds, i suddenly didn't need my headlights. the lightning was like a strobe light, constant and bright with strikes that filled the entire sky frequently.

my heart skipped a beat when i got to the turn only minutes away from the house. i was so close, i just had to stay ahead of the storm. curve after curve, i knew i was getting closer, my mind was easing, but i grip was still tight. i couldn't shake it. when i pulled in the drive, brock came out and waved me down to the best parking spot under the carport.

the moment i backed the truck in, the very second i was under the shelter, the rain started. buckets and buckets, it started falling. i knew that was an answer to a prayer and it suddenly added to the  overwhelmed feeling i was fighting. when brock and i were safely inside, i still couldn't shake it. he wrapped me in his arms and i wanted to break down.

i don't know if i had ever been so scared, but at the same time, i felt silly and childish. brock was calm. his parents were calm. we were safe. we were together. and rain couldn't hurt us. only a few hundred miles away in moore, oklahoma, people had recently become homeless. they didn't have food, they didn't have water, they didn't have things. it was all gone. some were even missing that one thing we cling to most in these situations; family. how could i feel so afraid in the safety i had?  but i did.

i'm safe. and i'm fine. but pray for moore. pray for the victims of the storm. pray for their families. and pray that the storms are over. because what i went through last night was nothing compared to the devastation that entered their lives only hours before.

image via


  1. Tasmin, this is really an amazing post. I can't fathom the emotions you were feeling, but I'm sure I would have been feeling the same exact thing. You're so brave to get out and drive to get to your husband and his family in the midst of the warnings!

    So happy to hear that you guys are okay!

    1. Kory, thank you for your concern! And for your kind words! It was definitely an experience I hope you don't have to have! Or anyone for that matter.