I’ve surprised even myself that I still have hope for this.  But someday, I hope that I will have a home. A real home.

When I was in high school, my English teacher asked each student in the class a simple question:

“What’s your life’s dream?”

There were the typical responses. To be a doctor! To be a lawyer! To be rich!

When it came to my turn, there was only short deliberation, after which I finally said, “To own my own house.  That’s all.”

Odd stares from my the class as I curiously peered out.

I was always labeled as the “brightest” in the class, but yet, I had the lowest aspiration of all.  Perhaps most confusing to me was the look of sheer shock on my teacher’s face. I really couldn’t understand why it was such an odd thing to say.

The truth is, having a good place to live was something I never had growing up. I remember doing my homework in cars. I remember reading Harry Potter, and not quite understanding why he disliked his cupboard under the stairs. To have any space of my own would have been beyond my wildest dreams. I would have taken Harry’s cupboard any day.

I built my own desk.

At one particularly low point in my life, I could not help but feel my life had developed into a running parody of the guy who breaks his glasses at the end of that Twilight Zone episode.

A desk is something so simple, yet personal for a writer. Yet, this simple luxury was something that I would be unable to have for at least 26 years, as unbelievable as that might sound. This series of unfortunate events, as my friend Lemony Snicket would say, is a story for another day.

I was flat broke, and sitting on the carpet in an empty apartment. If anything, I had negative amount of dollars in my bank account, and even a lesser amount of value in my heart and spirit. I never asked for much, if at all, ever in my life, and yet here I was, so much farther from my dream of a place to call my own than I could have ever imagined.

All I ever wanted was a desk to write on, and I could not even have that. I closed my eyes and let the tears roll down my face. I laid down on the carpet and let its heaviness comfort me.

Suddenly, it struck me. I said to myself, if I cannot afford a desk, I’ll build one! This was done not out of any actual bravado, but rather, desperation. I drove off, determined, and picked up two heavy pieces of wood from the local hardware store. Hardy, unfinished, but most importantly of all, cheap.

Building the desk proved to be harder than first estimated. But slowly, with layers of wood paint of polish, it came to life. And once it was built, so did I.

Writing Desk

If you’d like to build your own desk, the original article which contained instructions that helped me build it can be found here:  Original Article 

Kudos to the author for the clever and hilarious instructable.