Back in August of 2007, I had just finished my undergraduate degree, was engaged to be married, and beginning a Master's of Library and Information Science program. I had held all the top honors in my classes since grade school, and was looking forward to finishing my Ph. D. while working as an Academic Librarian so that I could one day become a Media Literacy professor. Suddenly, however, I was ill and spending all of my free time at the hospital getting tests done, desperate to discover what was ailing me so that I could get treatment.
Finally, over a year later I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, a chronic disorder which is thought to be caused by a deep sleep-disorder (an inability to get non-REM, dreamless deep sleep). After successfully holding down two jobs and putting myself through school full-time, I suddenly couldn't get myself out of bed to do my homework or go to class. Every treatment I tried, whether medicinal, homeopathic, naturopathic, etc., failed miserably. I was constantly in physical pain, exhausted by nightmares, my engagement disintegrated, and I lost job after job when--after having perfect attendance and punctuality--one day I would oversleep through 7 separate alarms placed around my apartment and miss an entire day (or night) of work.
It's been nearly 7 years since my first flare-up, and after struggling for so long to get my body back to normal I have finally accepted that a cure for Fibromyalgia may never be found, and that this problem isn't going to be overcome by routine. I must create an unconventional existence for myself, something much different from what I imagined my life would be like. I have finally made peace with the fact that I can not hold down a job where I don't keep my own hours, and have decided to build myself a stable home and business from the ground up! After years of panic, flailing, and sporadic homelessness, at the recommendation of my close friend, Stef Atkinson, I have finally have a permanent solution to my most pressing anxiety!
With wonderful support from kind hearts, hands, and pockets, I will be building my own (slightly different) version of this house. The entirety of this (ad)venture will be strenously, elegantly blogged, and at the end we'll have a beautiful party, debuting the house for all those who helped along the way! At that time I will also be serving my award-winning Taqueria Tara guacamole and pico de gallo (1st place each at the 2012 UT Design School's annual Guacapalooza and Salsaroo), some pulled pork (for the meaty) and pulled jackfruit (for the vegans/vegetarians), all on Cenote corn tortillas (for the gluten-free crowd) with a sweet potato and bell pepper hash. There will also be an open bar, and copies of Delta in Blue, an autobiographical nonfiction interspersed with poetry, printed by Raw Paw on our beautiful Risograph, written and signed by yours truly.
My version of the house will have a large loft accessible by railinged-stair, a compostable toilet, an indoor shower, a skylight leading to a rooftop garden, a rain-catchment system, and (with enough funding) some solar paneling to make it entirely self-sustaining. We will be chronicling the entire event with photos, videos, and specs for our contributors, sometimes opening up the construction site so that the most curious can participate in workshops (such as when we scorch and oil the siding wood in the Shou Sugi Ban method, construct the compostable toilet, build the rain-catchment system and solar-heated shower, and plant the rooftop vegetable garden).
From the time we begin construction this month, I will be updating a blog chronicling and expositing every detail of the work. As much of the house as possible will be fabricated from reclaimed materials (Emily Spykman, creator of Clementine and Co. jewelry, has already donated two windows!).
::the Wh0 & the How::
Of course, this dream of a stable, self-sustained existence will only be realized with your generous support; I hope you will take the time to make a donation and share this page with your friends and family. Without your partnership none of this would be possible. Without collaboration, none of us could survive.
Thank you so very much, and see you at the opening!
If you have any questions whatsoever or seek to get more involved, please email me at [email protected]