This is the calm before the storm. In more ways than one. Started out because Emme was getting her 4 month shots yesterday (the 18th) and I knew it would be a rough night somewhat or at least I would feel horrible about it. A mom is never ready for the shot days. They suck, plain and simple.
What I didn’t know, was there were 2 storms brewing, one of which would send all three of us taking cover in a strange couples’ house basement.
I was supposed to run some errands yesterday after Emme’s shots. Nothing big. Just get a fence post driver and a hook to hang my new basket and a quick trip (with both kids in tow – HA!) to Target to get some milk. After Emme’s shots, I told Brighton we could go to Crackdonalds for a happy meal. As we were eating, I watched these very very ugly clouds (now I know they were called Shelf Clouds – thank you Josh Baynes) roll in and what looked like right over Target. So I hurried up and got the kids loaded back up and we headed to the other side of town, hoping to get to the other Target or Menards before the storm got there. Well, it was so not in my cards to do that. I hit every. single. stoplight. along the way. Not to mention, the clouds were closing in around us, and I was behind a bunch of rubberneckers who apparently didn’t realize that I had two small children in my car and was slowly losing my shit.
So 1/2 hour later, we came upon Menards and I decided the storm was too close and I wanted to head home. To my right, all I could see was ugly clouds. To my left – ugly clouds. Straight ahead, blue sky. So I went straight knowing that the road would take me into the back side of Mount Vernon. I drove and drove, the clouds followed and followed. I finally managed to dodge the clouds…until I had to make a hard right and turn right into the eye of the storm. SHIT. White knuckles all the way down Shueyville Road until I went over a hill and saw that it was strangely calm but the leaves were all blowing in circles…so…freaking out a little (ok a lot…) I kept driving, said a silent prayer to keep my babies safe, and then the wind really really started. It was increasingly difficult to keep control of my car and keep it on the road. I came upon a house and I saw tail lights. So I backed up and turned in. At this point, the wind was insane. I opened my door, about ready to ask if I could bring my kids inside to wait out the storm. BEfore I got a word out, he was waving me inside. He went around to get Emme, and I grabbed Brighton and we ran inside. His wife and daughter were just about ready to go to the basement, so we followed.
I was shaking like mad. Eternally grateful that my kids were inside, safe and sound, and that these people were generous enough to let us in. Oh. and that they weren’t serial killers. That was a plus.
We shared names, though I can’t remember the mom’s name. The daughter Kora, who was 2 and adorable and her daddy Jason. Both Mom and Jason were teachers. I learned that they had just bought the farmhouse from her parents who were building a house up on the hill. As a matter of fact, working on it when the storm came in. After about 45 minutes, we were clear to leave. The storm had passed mostly, or at least the worst part of it (at that time…) and so we loaded back up and came home. It was about 2 pm and I had a beer. I still had to hold it together at least until Andrew came home, and I was about to lose it.
Another nasty front hit us again around 7 pm, but we were all home and went to the basement for a short time. We lost the trampoline in the first round, but that is nothing compared to what we could have lost. I am grateful that I live in Iowa, where kind people allow a strange woman and her two children in for shelter from a storm. I am fortunate that I stopped at the farmhouse that I did. I am surprised that I said a prayer and crossed myself, though I’m not 100% surprised.
It was truly terrifying. Having the kids in the car in that storm and knowing I could not get away from it was one of the worst feelings I’ve ever had. And finding that farmhouse and being shepherded in by two very kind human beings was one of the best feelings I’ve ever had. So even though I don’t recall your names, thank you.
See our photos of the storm Here
See photos from KCRG news Here