Tornados and Fatherhood

It was almost 9 when I went to get the kids from their beds.

My phone was buzzing with weather alerts, and when the tornado warning popped up, I went and got them from their beds and went down to the basement with the doggo.

While the baby slept, oblivious to the thunder and lightning, my oldest and I talked the latest on worms, honey-roasted peanuts and choo-choo trains.

He turns 4 in a few months.

One of the last things he said tonight before falling asleep on my lap was that he needs to go back to night-night since it was still dark. And Mommy won’t be home until it’s light again.

Their mother returns from a long work trip tonight.

Needless to say, he is jacked to see her.

As my children slept while the storm raged outside, I considered the nature of storms. There are those of the everyday variety, bringing rain, wind, thunder and lightning. Then there are those internal storms, the existential struggles, the pitched battle between good and evil within.

I considered my role as their father. To provide shelter for them against the inevitable storms of life. Until they are strong and able enough to do so on their own, and then do so for others as well.

I prayed for patience and wisdom and courage. For myself, for my wife, and for those little boys as well.

After the warnings subsided, I tucked them back into their beds.

Safe and sound from the storms tonight.

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