Not so long ago, I came to the realization that I’ve lived more of my life in the United States than I have in the Philippines. And for the most part, when I think of “home,” my thoughts immediately go to wherever it is I lay my head at night: next to my husband, not too far from our son, and within the general vicinity of our local congregation. It is no longer this tropical country that instantly, naturally comes to mind.
But when the rain falls, all bets are off. When the water falls heavy and in sheets, and when thunder rolls, roar after insistent roar, almost tripping all over each other and merging into one deep, guttural rumble in the air that you can feel beneath your feet as well, then my heart remembers its first home. Where, in a matter of seconds, the skies can darken and flood small streets, and the only light you see is the intermittent flash of lightning cutting through the thick clouds. Where, also in a matter of seconds, the storm whisks itself away to make room for the sun and its sultry heat to return.
Wherever I may be, and wherever “home” happens to be for me, thunderstorms will always be a reminder of exactly where my life began to take shape. And that is why I will always linger in a downpour, reluctant to come in from the rain.