I lived in the Midwest until I was twenty. I have many fond memories of that time. My family, the people, the gorgeous, green landscape. I lived in the Ozark hills (yeah, that makes me a hillbilly). If you’ve never seen it, no description of mine can do it justice. Rolling hills, acres of trees, and every shade of green you can possibly imagine.
It’s serene. Peaceful. My heart longs for the sights and sounds there. It’s comfortable. It’s home.
But I can’t say that I miss this time of year. It’s tornado weather back there. Thunderstorms. The limbo between hot and cold weather, where two fronts collide and wreak havoc on everyone around. One of my biggest fears was always a nighttime tornado. One that strikes without warning while you’re fast asleep in your bed, aware of nothing.
I would peek out my window and wait for the lightning just so I could see the sky and make sure there were no ominous funnels headed our way. (Um, I was a bit of a worrisome child if you must know.) I was terrified that the lightning would strike us, but more terrified of a huge gust of wind that could take away everything I knew and loved. It was indiscriminate. Uncontrollable. And I was scared of anything I couldn’t control.
I’m better now. Maybe it’s the number of years I’ve been away. Maybe I’ve learned to live with things I can’t control. But I still feel my heartbeat pick up, my breathing get a little faster and shallower, my palms start to moisten. Tornadoes are nothing to mess with. And they don’t care who you are or where you live. Your neighbor’s house could be missed by inches while yours is obliterated. It’s unfathomable.
So that is one thing I don’t miss about living in the Midwest. But I certainly will hold all of my friends and family in those areas in my thoughts today. It looks like stormy weather is brewing. Be safe, y’all.