This week, the news in North Texas has been all about the weather, which is not unusual for spring. Also, not unusual, is how quickly the reports change. One minute we are preparing for baseball-sized hail and the next we are breaking out the sunscreen. One thing I have noticed in the past couple of weeks is how often we’ve prepared for storms that never came to pass, or those that passed over a different section of town. When we were forecasted to have that baseball-sized hail a couple of weeks ago, people were finding all sorts of creative ways to protect their cars like parking them in a local shopping center’s garage overnight or leaving them undercover at work. I even saw a picture of someone who strung together pool noodles to make a protective car blanket. There is a saying in Texas, “if you don’t like the weather, just wait. It will change.” That has never been truer than this week as two days in a row we were warned of impending severe thunderstorms only to have nothing more than a small shower.
I wonder how often we prepare for a figurative severe storm in our lives only to find ourselves enjoying a gentle breeze instead? I’ve certainly been known to borrow worry from future events that never come to pass! There are definitely some legitimate storms that blow into all of our lives, but I’m talking about the made-up storms we sometimes create—the “what-if” storms. We spend valuable time and energy preparing to do battle in an argument that will never take place or be resolved as a simple misunderstanding. We make ourselves sick worrying that aches and pains might be signs of something sinister or imagining all the trouble our family members could get into if we aren’t right by their sides. The truth is that most of our “what-if” storms never materialize into much of anything. So, here is the challenge for myself and all my like-minded worriers—the next time you are tempted to say something about a meteorologist missing the mark on a forecast, stop and be grateful that one of the stormy days you forecasted for yourself turned out to be a nice day after all. And if you find yourself in a true storm—hold on tight to what you know to be true and solid, squeeze close to the ones you love, and wait it out—a sunny day is right around the corner!