Women and Adversity:
Living through a natural disaster
The tornado hit us two months ago, and we’re being patient about getting our house repaired. Several managers and adjusters have documented the destruction and decided what repairs are needed, but the roof shingles rest in the driveway, boards still cover broken windows and eaves and fascia hang from the cedar siding. Inside, woodwork slants away from frames while flooring and walls have gouges.
One aspect difficult to accept is looking through mud-splattered windows and seeing ruts in lawns where heavy equipment was needed to remove fallen and splintered trees. Intermittent patches of green surround trampled brown grass, and bare spots fill in where grass should be. Of the dozen azaleas we had in our backyard, only one survived, and most of the other shrubs we had were uprooted, damaged or killed.
I have talked to neighbors who had to find another place to live because their homes were condemned. Roofs were ripped from their girders, pine trees collapsed inside living rooms and bedrooms, and furniture was smashed to unrecognizable bits.
No one I talked to is saying “Why Me?” They understand that a natural disaster doesn’t only select homes whose owners have generous insurance payouts. Everyone accepts that what happened was random destruction. They are ready to collect the pieces and move on to rebuild, if not their homes, at least their lives.
We realize that we will spend most of 2021 repairing and rebuilding. We’ll have a newly refurbished, redecorated home, and we’ll be fine with that. We see new beginnings in our future.