Sunday night my family and I had plans to head downtown for a Rachel Platten concert, one of the kids’ favorite singers. It started thundering about 45 minutes before we left. The concert was outdoors, so Marlowe was worried about what the thunder prophesied. I assured her that all would be well. Shortly before we headed to the car it started raining, but again I promised that all would work out just fine. As we entered the garage to get in the car, the rain intensified, seeming to run sideways down the street. I laughed it off as a summer drizzle and we all hopped in the car. As we pulled out of the driveway I watched our across-the-street-neighbors’ front tree split almost neatly in half, plummeting onto the adjourning lawn, and looked around to see all of our trees twisting and turning and dangerously bending in the whirling wind of the strange summer storm.
Maybe we should wait just a sec, I said, pulling back into the garage.
So we stood in the garage and watched the wind and rain for a few minutes before the sky started to brighten and I suggested we try again.
As we pulled out of our driveway that time, a rainbow greeted us… stretching across the neighborhood like some kind of invitation to follow.
By the time we got downtown it was pouring rain again, and we arrived at the venue only to hear that the concert was delayed and the start time was uncertain, a cancellation of the entire event a definite possibility. But, we parked and waited.
After about an hour delay we finally got outside to see another rainbow alighting the evening sky.
The concert went on. A second rainbow appeared above the first. The night was perfect for the kids. (Even though Dylan took a mid-evening nap in the middle of it.) Marlowe was completely exhausted yesterday morning, but in that happy way when the feelings of the night before are still pulsing through your veins.
I somehow sense that there are a lot of lessons wrapped up in this one.
Because this is life, right? Swirling. Unpredictable. Sudden. Slow. Epic. Waiting. Breaks. Healing. Warnings to stay and invitations to follow.
So I guess it’s just this: Don’t be scared by the storm. Don’t let it stop you, even if it might delay you. Even if it splits you in half. Keep your eyes set on finding rainbows. If you can’t find them, keep looking. And when you do, remember that they’re probably telling you that you’re right where you should be.
Currently a speaker, educator, blogger, and mother, Erika Petrelli has been in the field of education for more than 15 years, and she currently exercises her dynamic education experience as The Leadership Program’s Vice President of Leadership Development.
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