One evening last week, after a particularly difficult morning thunderstorm that sent Bud into a panic attack and caused him to be half an hour late to school, I was more than a little concerned when I heard thunder rolling in the distance as I came home from work at the end of the day. When I entered the house I was surprised to find that, though Bud was highly attuned to the thunder and was talking about nothing else, he wasn't panicking.
My mom explained to me that because it wasn't raining and because they could only hear a distant rumble, she'd told Bud that the thunder wasn't near our house. He wanted to know where, exactly, it was, and since she didn't want to make him afraid to go to any of the places we normally frequent, she took a cue from South Park and told him that the thunder was in Canada.
The thunder continued to roll for the better part of an hour, and with each distant roll, Bud asked for a status report: "Where was that?" And each time, we gave him an answer:
It worked, and it kept his anxiety from escalating. Of course, his weather-anxiety has stayed at a constant level all week, bubbling right under his emotional surface, but it hasn't spilled over yet. And for that, I send my thanks - and my apologies - to my good-sported neighbors to the north. I hope you're finding that the storms (and the incrimination) are not too great a burden.