The Earthquake… Part 1

At 4:39 AM I was awaken by… what? Seems there was a loud noise, like a train derailing or something… did I dream it? Wait- why is my bed shaking? Then I realize, it isn’t just my bed, it’s my whole house! What the hell? Are we under attack?!?!

Thus, my day began.

I hopped out of bed and turned on the TV. I didn’t know what was going on, but if I was gonna die, I was gonna die informed… not asleep, oblivious to what’s happening. I’m kinda morbid that way. They were breaking in on all the middle of the night/super-early infomercials…

EARTHQUAKE!!!

Huh? We had an earthquake? Crap! What the hell does one do during (or by this point, after) an earthquake? I was going through my mental catalogue of emergency protocols… Let’s see, in a hurricane, you should go to the basement… or wait- isn’t that what you do for a tornado? Shoot! I can’t remember! Oh well, who cares? This isn’t a hurricane OR a tornado! It’s an EARTHQUAKE!!! I think I remember something about a doorway. Or is it a doorknob? Crap again. I know it has something to do with a door…

Finally admitting that I was as clueless as they come, I went to FEMA’s website to learn what in the world I’m supposed to do. I mean, yea, it’s too late to do much NOW, but hey, these things tend to come back or something, right? I wasn’t sure, but if we had a repeat episode, I was going to be ready this time!

I proceeded to learn everything about earthquakes. I learned, for example, that I live pretty close to the larges fault line in the nation. Never really knew that. I live in Missouri, for God’s sake, not California. Apparently this thing could blow at any time, and once it does, I’m pretty sure we’re all doomed. Great. Oh- and emergency protocol is to stand in a doorway, not twist a doorknob or whatever, like I was originally thinking.

Hey, wait a minute. Can I use this as an excuse to work from home today? It only took a minute to realize that no, this thing wasn’t nearly exciting enough to qualify me for a stay-at-home day. Oh well.

Seems like things calmed down pretty quickly, and no major damage was reported anywhere. No schools were closed either, so I figured none of us, my daughters nor I, had much of an excuse to stay home. Drats.

I go upstairs to wake my oldest daughter so she can get ready for school. She has a bad habit of NOT getting up when I need her to, so this time, I decided to use a new tactic- shock value. I ran in her room and said loudly, “Get up! Hey- did you feel the earthquake this morning? Can you believe it? We had an earthquake!!”

Just as I’d hoped, The Diva jumps up immediately. Unfortunately, I forgot one important thing- she is the biggest drama queen on earth. No idea where she gets it from (alright, alright, she may have inherited a TEENY bit of it from me). So not only does she jump up, but she begins running around the room, in circles, arms waving, screaming, “WE’RE GONNA DIE!!! IT’S AN EARTHQUAKE!!! OH NO! OH NO! OH NO!”

She has completely lost her mind! At first, I just stared at her, amazed. Wow. Maybe I should invent natural disasters EVERY morning! Clearly, such things wake her ass right up!

Eventually, I started worrying about our neighbors… she was THAT loud. I told her to calm down, and explained (as if I hadn’t been tempted to run screaming in fear myself a mere hour ago), that there is nothing to be afraid of. I reminded her that we HAD an earthquake, as in past tense, and that there is no danger to any of us at this point. Wonderful mommy that I am, I told her that the best way to lessen our fears is to educate ourselves. We went downstairs, and I let her watch the news with me.

She calmed down almost immediately, and seemed really interested in everything they were saying on TV. She paid very close attention when they explained what an aftershock is, and that while they will likely occur, they will be less severe than the original quake had been. She learned all about emergency procedures, much like I had earlier.

She also learned about Earthquake Insurance.

She gets this “I’m a super-smart brainiac” look on her face and turns to me.

“Do we have Earthquake Insurance?”

So I say, “Uh… what do you know about insurance, kid?”

She says, “I know if we don’t have it, and have another earthquake, and that TV falls off the TV stand, you probably can’t afford to replace it”

Smart ass kid. Can’t “afford” to replace it?!?! Where does she get this stuff?

I hate it when she’s right. I mean really- what would I do without VH1? I’d die for sure- immediately.

To Be Continued…

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