Thunder isn’t the Scary Part

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There was a storm at about three thirty this morning. I was awake before it started. Three o’clock is my wake up and think things to death time. Here’s a little glimpse of what was going on in my head before the storm started. I have left out a few things because I don’t want you all to think I am weird:

Am I ever going to get the kids to pick up after themselves? I’m always so mad at them for that! Its so hard to not let it get in the way of all the good stuff: their sloppiness. Why are they so inconsiderate when it comes to the house? They are such great kids otherwise. I’m tired of feeling like Hitler all the time…

…if the world had been a little bit nicer to the Germans after World War I would Hitler have made as much “sense” to so many of the angry Germans? I would imagine it’s easier to start an uprising filled with complete insanity when people are hungry and hostile. Did the Germans get a bad rap? If Hitler never existed would things on the Pacific front have changed any? I can’t remember if there were two different issues going on or if they were tied together. I should do some reading tomorrow. It’s Memorial Day after all. Maybe there will be something on tv that will give me a quick synopsis…

…Wow! I used to be so much smarter. I have a political science degree! Why can’t I remember if the Japanese and the Germans were buddies in World War II or if they both just happened to be pissed off at the same time. What has happened to me? I hope I’m not losing my mind. It IS hereditary…

…Mom’s grandma was German. I always think of German women as being cranky and big busted. Is this because of how I feel about Hitler?  Maybe war stems from cranky women in general, big boobs or not…

…I don’t think I got my big boobs from my mom’s side of the family though. We called her Tiny Grandma after all. But she did have a very wide and serious mouth. I don’t know if she was cranky: she died when I was little, but she looks cranky in this picture.

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I think it was my dad’s side that had the stacked women….

Crap. I really need to get in for my mammogram. I’m like two years past due. Maybe three…no wait…it’s only two…but still…

…Those machines are just awful. I bet a cranky German woman invented it…

…I wonder how they ever got my mom’s boobs to actually squeeze in between the vice grip plates? You would think there would be an easier way for flat breasted women. It’s bad enough when you actually have something to pick up and flop down on that cold plate…

…will my life be better now that I have purchased two new bras that do indeed (as claimed) not allow armpit flab to hang out? My girls felt so happy and didn’t once fall out yesterday no matter how hard I tried to get them to in the dressing room. Will taking away the double boob action truly be as important to my self esteem as Oprah said it would be? Flat breasted women are so lucky. But I am too now that I have good bras…

…Maria is really the luckiest: she’s right in between me and my mom in cup size. Gosh she’s so perfect! I wish she would figure this out. I wonder if she will let me in the delivery room when she has babies? I didn’t want my mom in there. I feel kind of bad for that now. But I don’t think she wanted to be in there anyway. She said she’d rather be burned to death than have another baby. I mean who wants someone with that attitude in the delivery room with you? It’s hard enough giving birth without negative thinkers in the room…I probably need to let go of that guilt…

…If there is a fire will all of us be able to get out of the house safe? Should I grab the turtle?  Gosh we have spent so much money on that damn thing…

…I really need to get Duke’s ears looked at. I wonder why he always has ear infections? He never swims. Who has ever heard of a lab that doesn’t like the water?

And it goes on and on like this, almost every morning at three a.m. It’s been this way since I was a little kid. My brain, filled with IMPORTANT thoughts such as I have described, wakes my body up so that there is someone to listen. Unless I have taken Nyquil. Then my brain just worries about getting addicted to Nyquil and ruining my liver while my body happily sleeps.

So silly.

But this morning, when the wind started blowing the thunder and lightening toward our neighborhood, all of my trivial worries were cast aside. At first there were just bright flashes that lit up the darkness.

It’s funny how so often you hear storms called thunderstorms or as I said at the beginning “a thunder and lightening storm”. I never hear anyone say “lightning and thunder storm” do you?  We all know that the scary part is the lightening right? Yet it’s the thunder that makes us scamper to our parents room in fear. By the time the sound of the lightning arrives to our startled ears and pounding hearts we’re safe from getting struck down. Until the next flash.

When I was a little girl, my dad told me that if you put your hand on the Holy Bible and told a lie, God would strike you dead with lightning. This was the only thing I remember my dad telling me about God. I have had many many nightmares, waking up in the dead of night just before the lightning hits me. I hesitate to this day when faced with telling a fib versus telling the truth, even when there isn’t a bible anywhere near. Truth doesn’t ALWAYS win though.

Mom was an ex-catholic, Buddhist, agnostic, new age, searching soul who scared the shit out of me once (I was a teenager) when she stood outside in the wind and rain, a glass of wine in one hand and the other one hanging on to our rod iron fence in a triple dog dare pose, her face looking up into the sky with ferocity equal to the raging storm. “Bring it on buddy! Prove yourself!”

So naturally I find myself lacking any logic whenever there is a storm. I laid there this morning, paralyzed and waiting. I could feel a buzz in my fillings (this for sure dates me) and started thinking about the movie Poltergeist where the dad explains to the kids how to tell how far away the storm is by counting right after the lightning flash “one one thousand, two one thousand, three one thousand” BOOM! the storm was three miles away.

How do we KNOW our house isn’t sitting on top of the angry bones of an ancient witch doctor who is conjuring the storm to take our house off of him? It could be true.

But no. I can’t ever seem to shake the idea that it’s God making all that racket. And of course it’s because He is mad at ME. At three thirty in the morning the earth DOES revolve around me and sometimes I am the cause of all the anger. I hear a whisper in my head telling me to put a pillow over my eyes so that I won’t see the lightning. I argue “but then I won’t be prepared when I am struck”. But then I do it. There are just some things you can’t prepare for.

My nose and mouth are not covered by the pillow and I inhale the yummy smelling rain through the open window about two feet from my face. I like it open all the time. It feels like I can’t breathe when it’s shut.  I freeze my poor husband out in the winter. He claims to have woken up one winter morning with icicles hanging from his nose. He’s such an exaggerator! Fresh air is good for you. But this morning I wonder if the lightning will come through the screen. Perhaps I should shut it but then think “will glass make any difference if it’s my time to go?”

God and I chat a bit in between His thunderous yelling:

“You know H. It’s not me making all that noise. I am not the bad guy here.”

“Yeah, well I know you could STOP it if you wanted to. Just like you could stop a lot of other upsetting things. It’s hard not to blame you.”

“Well at least you’re thinking about me. Bummer it takes all of THIS to get you to pay attention.”

“Ah-ha! See? I’m no fool, it IS you. You know how I feel about lightning.”

“What is it you’ve done that you think is so bad that I’m going to strike you dead? Do you really think I work that way? Dork.”

I start naming all my recent stuff to Him. “See?”

“Jeez. You suck! Sinner!”

“That’s it? That’s all you’re going to say?” My fillings tingle for a second followed by the loudest boom of the morning. I jump and stifle a scream. “Seriously? STOP!!!”

God gives me His best monster cackle. You know, like Count Dracula? Only it comes out like the Sesame Street puppet guy, ‘The Count’. “Okay, I admit that was a little show offy. But really, you should probably relax on yourself a little. I’m not saying you should keep doing that stuff. Especially that one thing. I mean yikes, it’s clearly not good for you or you wouldn’t be thinking it’s worthy of me striking you dead. Am I right?”

I nod my head under my pillow. I’m starting to get sleepy as the storm moves away.

He whispers one last thing to me as I drift off:

“Soul aching: it’s cause is so relative and unique to each of you, yes? Thank God I’m God or I’d never be able to keep track of you all and help. You can take the pillow off your face now H. I’m done talking you through the lightning.”

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