Imagine walking into your bedroom and seeing [this] hanging from the ceiling. Pretty intense, indeed. How about [this] happened to me one evening, days before the 4th of July. I walk in my bedroom and, boom, a live branch from an oak tree is dangling above my bed dripping with rain water. So odd. So random. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing…
I called my husband and told him a tree was in our bedroom. He was like, “huh?“. “A tree!” I said. “In our house!”
We live in an older neighborhood, so a tree falling on the house has always been a concern. Especially during thunderstorms, which we’ve had a lot of this summer. What I should’ve said to Keith was, “Babe, everyone is safe, but a branch pierced through our roof and is hanging down in our bedroom.” But I went there with, “A tree is in the house!” I wasn’t trying to embellish, y’all, I just freaked out!
It’s been a couple of weeks since the branch came through the roof. We had the ceiling tarped from the outside and now a hideous hole remains on the inside of our bedroom.
As I look back at photos of the invasive branch, I, of course, begin seeing things with my third eye. Here are 10 practical and spiritual takeaways I’ve collected from the whole tree-in-roof situation:
- One of the great benefits of living close to family and friends is that they are so resourceful in the event of emergencies. For example: providing temporary housing, helping to entertain kids while you’re busy freaking out (thanks to my bestie Jessica), and tarping your roof late at night after getting back from out of town (many thanks Aaron).
- The only good thing about a freak-out is the return to calm-and-collected. Refrain from overreacting.
- Never watch Jurassic Park before a tree branch pierces through your roof. After a long day and upon first glance, it’ll look like a dinosaur leg.
- “Assumming more risk” sucks when you actually have to assume more risk. Pay a higher insurace rate if you can, and come out with a lower deductible.
- Real adulting includes getting through unexpected life experiences and crisis situations.
- Life is full of unexpected things that you can’t fully prepare for. But it certainly helps to have some good insurance.
- Be grateful that what could’ve happened, didn’t.
- God can and will fill any hole in our lives no matter how bad the void looks.
- Life doesn’t get any easier. That’s why the hard stuff gets punted to the grown ups.
- We should be open to new knowledge and what others can teach us. People who know because they have “been there” are an invaluable resource.
We really can learn and grow from unexpected things that come up in our lives. Consider a not-so-common problem you’re facing today. It could be sudden changes at your job, taking care of a sick child, making funeral arrangements, dealing with a house fire, or anything you feel is outside of your control. Now activate your third eye and watch wisdom start seeping in. Not only that, after going through tumultuous times, you become the experienced person who has “been there” and can offer advice or assistance to someone else when they need it.
We’re all in this together. It’s called community, yo. ❤
Clinnesha is a writer and social entrepreneur who feels most accountable to southern, black citizen-artists, elders, children, and families. Her work is at the intersection of arts, culture, innovation, and community.