Monday, May 20, 2013

For Moore.

There's not a lot I remember from my few, tiny years in Moore.

I remember the grocery store we frequented.  The red work truck Daddy drove, the little house out at Draper lake, and vaguely, the hospital where Mom worked.  The day care center where I spent so much time... that kind of thing.  I remember standing in that red Dodge between Mom and Daddy while we drove somewhere.

There's not that much else I remember from our years in Moore that I'd care to share.  There's the story of how Mother found out how stubborn I am took place in the house at Draper lake.  I remember being in my high chair in that kitchen, insisting on a bowl of chili... then realizing I'd made a mistake but eating it anyway, refusing to let it cool.

I remember picking cherry tomatoes in the garden in the backyard, crying because our Saint Bernard puppy laid across the narrrow concrete path preventing my mini plastic trike from passing.  I distinctly remember napping in the lid of my turtle sandbox under a thin blanket, resting my head on the pillow from the crib set my daughter is sleeping on now.

The rest of the memories are of the brief flash of a destructive storm that was my parents' marriage.  Shortly after these photos were shot, Mother and I left the house on Draper lake, moving to south OKC to start over.  

The rest of this Okie's heart's Moore memories are of the stepmother moving in, and long after, trying out for the All-State band at West Moore High School.  

Tonight, I'm pretty sure that house and the green and white feed store sign that, through all those years, still guided me to the house when I was auditioning for the University of Oklahoma.  

In between feeding the kids, cleaning the house for Richie's birthday party this weekend, and all the other mama things I had to do, I kept refreshing the news website.  Facebook.  Turning on the Weather Channel.  The same lady who spoke to us on the news when I was a child in Oklahoma City was professional, yet heartbroken, as she heard from the folks on site that an elementary school was hit.  

Then another.  

As I read stories to my sweet, priceless babies, I couldn't help but think of those parents tonight.  Those priceless babies waiting... and those who waited for them.  

And those who will never read stories to their babies again.  

We prayed for them out loud in generalities, because I didn't want to scare the kids... but my heart poured silently, begging God to bring some more alive.  Comfort them.  And oh, Lord... be with them.  

I know this won't likely make it to any of you who have been destroyed by this.  But this Okie is heartbroken with you.  

And I am so very sorry.  

I cannot imagine.  

I prayed for you as I hugged them.  Loved them.  Helped them brush their teeth, and got them one more drink of water.  I prayed for you as I kissed their sweet heads, watched them run down the hall in their clean PJ's, and tucked them into their beds. 

And I thanked the Lord for them.  

I've lived in Texas for nearly 18 years, but I'm still an Okie.  And my heart is broken for my dear home state.  

Thanks be to God that my sister, her husband, and my great-aunt in OKC are safe, and for all those men and women working to rescue and restore the people of Moore. 

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