So, somehow I have made it all the way to nearly my 28th birthday without realizing that I seem to have a paralyzing fear. How could this be possible? Well, I guess I have no clue...except that I have never been in a situation to find said fear, so it just has never come up...how very odd. Anyway, I am officially afraid of heights...or maybe no exactly heights because I have been in tons of very tall buildings and on roller coasters and had no real fear. Of course I have adrenaline, but that is different than the panic that consumes your body when you are truly afraid. I guess the real fear is of falling. Yes, that is what it is. When I am in a situation where I feel that I could fall, I am TERRIFIED.
How did I come to this realization you are all asking....I know you are. Well, I got on the roof with Nick this weekend. Seemed completely harmless to me. Let me first point out that we HAVE A ONE STORY HOUSE. The roof is NOT overly slanted. It is a normal little ranch. I have seen Nick and his dad working up there for a couple of weeks now. I have never thought twice about it. Then this weekend Nick asked me if I would come up and help him finish up the shingles. I say of course. I always wanted to get up there, but never really had a reason. So, I begin to go up the ladder. All is good until I get to what I believe to be the top. My face is even with the roof. I can totally see the top of the house. cool. Then I realize I need to keep going. I have to get high enough to actually get my FEET on the roof. Hua. How in the hell do I do that. There is nothing to hold on to! (This is my actual problem with the entire being of the roof thing, come to think of it)
So, I get myself on the roof. I knew by my refusal to let go of the top rung of the ladder that I was in some trouble, but I was still to proud to admit it. I slowly walk over to the chimney. I GRASP on for dear life. I am trying to be cool, act like I am just getting adjusted, but the whites of my knuckles are giving me away. Nick tells me to go down a couple of feet and hold these shingles. Me feet are glued in place. I just keep looking at the pitch of the roof, and how if I fall, there is NOTHING at all to stop me but the ground. I just keep running all the times I have tripped over nothing at all in my head. I am a real disaster on perfectly flat land. What in the hell is going to keep my clumsy ass on the roof I ask you??
So, I move down the two feet. I am THRILLED that I get to sit in order to get the job done. Nick has noticed my fear by this point, and keeps telling me I need to get used to it. To get up and walk around. Right. Finally he realized I am absolutely no help and says I should go on down. Here is the new problem. I has scooched on my butt half way across the roof....and the fear was really taking control. I could do NOTHING. Nick came to get me and help me to my feet. I was all hunched over while taking the smallest steps you have ever seen in your life. Every few seconds, I would just panic, my knees would give way and I would sit back down. My safe spot. Not many people fall off roofs while sitting down. Nick was great. He kept telling me to take big boy steps (he thought that was hilarious) and that I could do it. He never got mad, and I am sure to him it was crazy, but he was patient with me.
Right about the time I got back to the beautiful chimney, the neighbor came out and yelled, "I can't help but notice you don't look to comfortable on that roof!" He was laughing and smiling. I smiled back (fingers digging into the chimney) and just laughed. Did the fool not know that I didn't have time for small talk? I was TERRIFIED! Finally Nick got me to the ladder, where my feet were all of a sudden glued to the roof. How was I going to get back on that thing? I kept trying, but it was like an invisible line was tied to my feet. My body just kept bailing on the effort. It really was getting embarrassing. Nick was so tickled. Finally (FINALLY) I got my ass back onto the ladder. Then I was able to really understand how silly it was. I got really tickled, laughed so hard that I blew a little snot on myself, and told Nick I was really glad I could help out. I am pretty sure he will never ask me to get back on the roof...fine by me!