Storms

The first year i owned my property texas had historic flooding; the rivers literally changed their shape as silt was pushed down-river by fast-moving water and left behind once the flooding receded. Trees with shallow roots were dragged away and in some cases debris tore away at the edges of what used to be the river banks. During this time flooding was not the only thing home owners had to be worried about. It was a big year for hail too. We had wild and violent storms crop up this past year. I was afraid to wonder what kind of drought would follow such a soaking. This past summer there was a huge and furious storm heading directly for us. A tornado warning was in effect so we had to move all the patients away from the windows, close all the doors, and try to keep the patients in common areas away from glass. I watched the radar in horror as the storm hit my little town head on while i was 30 minutes away, unable to leave my work. My neighbor who lived in a different section of the same town told me that her sons had called. Baseball-sized hail had smashed through their windows. She told the boys to stay away from the windows until she could get home to clean it up. I wondered how my tiny house was faring if my neighbor’s regular house had lost its windows and was now covered in shards of glass. I prayed. I asked God to watch over the tiny house, protect its glass windows, and shield my two dogs (sili and cashew) from harm. It was a long grueling day. When all my work was finished i packed my things and set out down the road. As i neared my little town i saw leaves blown across the street lanes and branches of trees down in or next to the road. It looked like a hurricane had come through, and then all of a sudden it didn’t. You could tell where the hail had fallen and where it hadn’t. On one side of town the trees were just absolutely shredded and the branches left were kind of patchy and wilted. On the other side of town the street wasn’t littered with tree carnage. When i got to my property all the trees were still standing. As i drove through the gate i jumped out of the car and ran around the house. All the windows were perfectly intact. My dogs were safe and sound, barking inside. I dropped to my knees in the mud and thanked the Lord with a joyous heart. I had been suppressing visions of cold wet dogs covered in blood and broken glass all day as i cared for my patients, pleading with my legs to carry me home to check on them, but the responsible side of me that wanted to keep my job made me stay at work. Those two dogs were my family. However, they couldn’t pick up a phone or speak english to say, “we’re alright. Bring bones when you get back.” I had to trust the Lord to watch over them and he had. Living in an apartment i never really took the weather seriously. If something went wrong i’d get an email notification from maintenance or one of my neighbors would handle it. However, once i was a home owner, i understood the fragility of glass and the mobility of structures under high winds. I feared hail, flooding, and tornadoes. I looked at storms through a different lens. I had become like my former patient, the retired sheep farmer; obsessed with the weather.

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