Growing up, I lived in a house built by my Dad on a Lake. It's one of my favorite places on Earth despite what I'm about to tell you. The house is nestled in amongst the tall trees, making windy storms somewhat frightening for my Dad who is always trying to protect us.
Whenever there was a storm that produced strong winds, my Dad would rip us from our beds and herd us down into the basement....waaaaay in the back by the furnace room away from ALL windows (our basement was a walkout) with all the necessary gear to live a comfortable life holed up in the furnace room for a week or two. I remember these moments like they were yesterday...I remember being asleep and then terrified for my life as we skipped every other stair in a mad dash to get to the furnace room to sit on the cold floor and dream about what sort of hellish fate we faced. Would it be a tornado that swirls us into the next county? A flash flood that would drown us all in that small room? A firey tree, struck by lightening...crashing into the house smashing us AND setting us on fire?!!
The only time I ever felt safe sleeping in stormy weather was when I was deamed old enough to move into the bedroom in our finished basement. Nestled away, where the only evidence of storm was the rain dripping on a vent...making sweet pitter patter noises. The thunder and lightening didn't even scare me because it would have to penetrate throught the floors above me...and THAT would never happen! I was safe!
Those moments have translated into a very strong adult fear of storms. The house I live in now, with my husband, is a little old 1940's Cape Cod nestled in amongst very large trees. Trees that would fall onto my house and squash me in my sleep (were I sleep in the TOP floor!) if they were blown down by storms. Lately, we have had a lot of thunder, lightening, 70 mile an hour winds, and sideways falling rain. This rain pounds the window next to my side of the bed and wakes me up. I wake in a state of panic, shouting unintelligible commands to my husband to get down into the basement. He, apparently, is not phased by the fact that at any moment we could be pinned beneath a 10,000 lb mature tree gasping our last breaths and saying our last "I love you's". He is not scared by this thought and just continues to sleep peacefully as I stumble out to the living room, do a quick check of The Weather Channel to get a preview of my possible fate, and then scamper down into the basement with the dog, sit on my treadmill in the dark with an AM radio, a blanket, and my cell phone while the dog pants in fear at my side.
I'm thinking that this is something I might want to work on BEFORE I have kids and perpetuate The Cycle Of Storm Insanity.