Tornado Hug

Given the news, I’m not surprised when my ten-year old screams out in the middle of the night.

When I meet him in the hallway, he wraps his arms around my waist, and whispers, “I dreamed of a tornado.”

I hold him tightly without saying a word…

I don’t tell him that he is safe or that tornadoes are rare in the mountains. Instead I stand  with him in the face of life’s fragility, in the same way that I would have liked my own parents to do when my own nightmares began.

As Aidan and I embrace in the dark, I think of all those families whose lives have been turned upside down this year by weather; and I stand with them too.

Just over an hour away is the city of Springfield where a tornado swept up the Connecticut River, rivaling the special effects of any blockbuster.

We don’t have television, so my son hasn’t seen those images, but it’s enough to know that people die, even children, at the hands of water and wind and war.

Kelly Salasin, June 2011

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