The House in Which Life Starts Over
They say failure is a new start. Of course, the saying is mostly valid for those courageous people who see beyond the impasse a new chance to start over and confront life. A fighter is what we will be talking about in this story, a woman who refused to give in to a relentless disease and saw in this difficult situation the opportunity to change her life completely. She is the one who built the house in which life starts over.
Dee Williams, like many Americans, owned a three bedroom home in Portland, Oregon. She led a normal life until, 12 years ago, medics diagnosed her with cardiomyopathy, a serious disease affecting the heart muscles. Then a heart attack occurred. This was the starting point of the new life the woman is now leading.
She left her home in Portland and move into the 84 square feet house on wheels. “If you look it up online, your life expectancy is typically one to five years”’ she told the New York Times in an interview last year. “The notion of paying a 30-year mortgage didn’t make sense”, she added. Ironically, as she was one day waiting to see her cardiologist, she laid her eyes on a magazine where she read about a man who had built a tiny home himself. That article would inspire her in the life ahead.
She flew to Iowa to meet him in person. The meeting ended with her drawing her own blueprints and building a house made of mostly recycled materials and which cost her in the end 10,000 USD. Believe it or not, the monthly bills do not go beyond five dollars.
Dee’s house is outfitted with the basics. A sink and a composting toilet, a sleeping loft upstairs with a skylight. Lights that run on solar power. But there’s no shower or oven or running water. For those luxuries she relies on her friends Hugh O’Neill and Annie McManus, whose backyard she has called home since her tiny home experience began. Her tiny house on wheels is now a community space shared by friends and by those inspired by her story. She even started her own foundation to provide resources for those who want to build a similar tiny home and live happily.