This morning we had a storm coming right at the time that the kids had to be dropped off at school. Figures, huh?!?
I watched the clouds darken and winds pick up as I urged them to choke down some groceries and maybe we could beat the storm. The youngest has to be taken to a special entrance and if we could beat the school buses, I could park close to an overhang and avoid the drenched rat look. My umbrella is broken and it seems I only shop when it’s sunny, causing me to forget to get a new one.
Whipping into the parking lot with a definite Wizard of Oz cloud looming, I saw the buses already lined up. The closest spot was around 75 yards from the overhang. Putting my car in park, I tried to explain the “Dart and Bolt” method we were going to apply to our usual meandering walk to class. I saw the gleam that only appears in the eyes of the young that says “yeah, that ain’t happening, Mom.”
I jumped out about the same time the 40mph winds came barreling across the lot. (Yes, I’ve checked the weather and that is what they clocked for our area) I snatched the last two girls from the car and grabbing the 5yo’s hand and hitching then 3yo up on my hip, I did my own version of “Dart and Bolt.” Well, the best version you can manage with 40lbs on one hip and the stubborn sloth clutching your other hand. About this time I realized that my choice of the mid-thigh sundress in 40mph winds is a vulgar choice. (Dear other parents shielding your children’s eyes from my Marilyn Monroe display, I’m sorry and I hope no therapy will be needed for your innocent babes)
Leaving the 3yo, gnashing her teeth and wailing about not being allowed to walk on her terms into class, safely in her teacher’s hands, the 5yo and I turned back to race back to the car. Her little eyes were crazy wide with fear of the scene in front of her with the winds bending the trees and shaking the “children crossing” signs. We stepped out from under the overhang.
Then the rain came crashing down. Picture standing in a high pressure car wash. Yeah, that. I grabbed her hand and we started running. Her little legs just weren’t doing the job, so I picked her up and ran with her.
By the time we screeched into the car, my daughter was howling. With laughter. I was wringing my hair and sundress out and not laughing. All I could think of was how I had just mooned at least 75% of the people I have to face at PTA meetings over perfectly decorated cupcakes and other Pinterest creations of the perfect mom. So not laughing.
The 5yo started jabbering about the adventure.
“I was scared, but I followed you. You carried me and that was cool. I didn’t know you could do that.”
Reaching behind me to grab a coat left over from winter in the backseat to dry my face with, I saw her eyes. Amazed and sparkling with giggles.
There was a time not so long ago that I stood watching in fear, knowing I was going to have to step from what I thought was safe. There was not going to be any escaping the rains and winds, I was going to have to walk right into it.
I took that step out to follow and when I felt I couldn’t keep up, I was carried to safety in the arms of my Father who loved me too much to not help me get to where I needed to be. There was a moment when I thought I might be left alone to struggle through, but when I looked up past my tears, I saw love that was willing to pick me up and run with me.
Yes, by the time I got there, my whole being showed effects of being touched by the raging storm. My heart pounded still, my hair dripping and my clothes soaked, but I had to look around me in amazement and giggle.
“Dear Father, I was scared, but I followed you. You carried me and that was cool. I didn’t know you could do that.”