Do you know the one thing that makes sweating through Arizona summers worthwhile?
I realize thunderstorms are dangerous. Driving home yesterday afternoon, we could hardly see the car in front of us through all the dust blowing across the road. But somehow, even though I practically pee my pants when I ride a rollercoaster, I have no fear of thunderstorms. I love the thrill of watching our trees whip wildly in the wind, rain pouring down in silver sheets off our roof. I love sitting on the front porch with Mr. Brown Eyes and watching the lightning flash over the mountains. I love hearing the thunder crack so loud my heart stops for just a second.
The best thunderstorms are the ones that hit in the middle of the afternoon. One minute the air is so thick with heat and humidity it could suffocate you, the sky clear blue and bright with sunshine, and the next minute, it seems, the sky is dark and cool, refreshing rain is pelting your skin. It's like a little gift from Mother Nature, a welcome reprieve from the scorching summer sun.
The summer after we bought our house, however, my love for thunderstorms seriously waned. The first storm of the summer hit one afternoon while Mr. Brown Eyes was at work. I had already discovered a leak in our dining room, so I put a towel down to soak up the water and went about whatever activities I used to engage in before becoming a mother, like painting my toenails and vacuuming. (Seriously, what did I do with all that spare time I used to have? I have no idea.) Then I heard a steady plop, plop coming from the living room. Following the sound, I found another leak over our staircase. Two, actually. I set bowls down to catch the drips. The plop changed to a thunk as the drips hit the plastic bowls.
Three leaks, I thought to myself. Not a big deal. We can take care of them.
Then the plop, plop resumed, this time on the opposite end of the living room. Once again I followed the sound and found a leak on the left side of the fireplace. I put the bowl down, but then--another plop. Another leak, on the other side of the fireplace. This one was steady and splattered rainwater all over me. I put another bowl underneath it.
By now I was running out of bowls and the rain was coming down harder, pummeling the roof with a staccato beat. But just as soon as I located one leak, the plop of water hitting the carpet would signal another one. I found myself scrambling back and forth across the living room, moving a bowl here, throwing down a towel there, until there were so many leaks I couldn't possibly pinpoint them all.
I gave up trying to keep our living room dry and tore at my hair in frustration. I fell to my knees and begged, pleaded, for Heavenly Father to stop the rain. But when I opened my eyes the rain was pouring down harder than ever, my living room a regular metronome of plops and thunks. I cried. I prayed again, certain that if I had enough faith Heavenly Father would have compassion on my predicament.
But it kept raining.
For a moment I was angry, and then a quote I had heard once or twice returned to my mind, "Sometimes the Lord calms the storm, but other times He calms the child, while the storm rages on."
I realized then that Heavenly Father had seen fit to let the storm rage on, but He was offering me His comfort. So I knelt down again and changed the tone of my prayer, asking instead for peace and comfort to make it through the storm. The thunder continued to rumble outside, the rain drip, drip, dripping from my ceiling for most of the afternoon, but I was comforted. Instead of praying to change my circumstances, I prayed to change myself.
Thankfully, the leaks in our ceiling are now (mostly) fixed, and I can enjoy thunderstorms again.
They are seriously the best thing about Arizona summers.
Bring on the rain,
The Brown-Eyed Girl