My elementary school had annual Spring Festivals. When I was in first grade I played Dorothy in our mash-up version of The Wizard of Oz and The Wiz. My mom made me a special dress, I had the Judy Garland ponytails and I got to Ease on Down the Road. My entrance into the multipurpose room was to twirl and spin like a top in order to simulate me being whisked in by the tornado. It was all play and pretend. It was all for show.
Today I wish the news of the tornado ravaged cities was only for show. I’ve never lived in the Midwest or anywhere south of Virginia, so I am unfamiliar with preparing for tornado season and the wonderment of ‘what ifs’ that come along with it. To have safety and shelter one minute and in a split second only own the belongs on your back is hard for me to fathom. This is the reality for hundreds of thousands this morning. There is nothing easy about the road they are traveling down today or the weeks ahead. Possessions are replaceable by loved ones are not. My heart goes out to those who lost family and friends.
In the movies Dorothy gets swept up by a tornado that transports her to a magical wonderland so she can learn the simple life lesson that she didn’t have to look further than her own back yard to appreciate her heart’s desires. In real life the tornado rips through your world, leaves you no house, no front yard, no back yard and there is no magical wonderland waiting for you. If only the victims could be given a pair of ruby slippers and click their heels to bring back their sense of security – their sense of home. “There’s no place like home” and I pray for speedy recovery so they can feel at home again.