A roof over my head

Roof is NAKED! the email from my neighbor exclaimed.

Fred’s been keeping an eye on the progress of the house repairs and sends me reports. Mostly, he’s astonished it has taken so long.

This week, the tarp ripped and the house suffered water damage. It was kept to a minimum only because I happened to go there on a Sunday after the rain.

Finally the sun came out and the framers showed up – but Home Depot had delivered the wrong length of rafters. Framing in the roof took two days instead of one.

The roof, on Wednesday

Today, at long last, the roofers came. They ripped off all the old shingles – the dumpster was overflowing, and the shingles were laying in the driveway.

I looked at the moss on them, remembering how much vinegar we sprayed to get rid of that moss. It beat us.

Beneath shingles on a roof are the decking and tar paper, and that’s what Fred meant by NAKED. As illustrated in the featured image above.

When I arrived, the roofers were just starting to nail down the shingles, BAM BAM BAM, with a pneumatic tool.

I went inside. Stopped, turned in a slow circle, looking, feeling.

The house felt very different. Very much better.

It was no longer mortally wounded. No more holes in the roof. No more holes in the bedroom closet.

I didn’t realize, until they were gone, how much pain those holes caused me.

The roof on a house is the mainstay of protection. You can board up broken windows. You can wet-vac if the water heater breaks. You can stick around even if the decks collapse.

But not if the roof gets bashed in.

I understand now: The roof is what makes a house your home.

Home … the place you can nestle like a bird with eggs, warm, dry, out of the prying eye of the sun and the claws of hawks.

Those big holes that the oak tree gouged in the roof made Azalea unsafe, cold, and (this week) wet.

The holes evicted me – not only in the physical sense. They upended my sense of security and stability. And it was so soon after Tom, my emotional protector, was knocked down by a stroke.

The holes in the roof made my home an unstable shell. The holes emptied my belongings, sent me into this hell of confusion and loss, forced an unwanted project onto my overflowing stack of work.

Now, order is restored.

Now she is sealed against the winds and snow and rain.

I measured the living room for new furniture. Noticed how nicely the windows align. Nodded at the peaceful view down the valley.

She is my Azalea again.

Today’s penny is a 1980. That’s the first year that I put a roof over my head with my very own earnings.