One year ago, I made the crazy decision to purchase a school bus...
So what has happened over the course of 12 months? Everything I never expected. Let me recap where I was a year ago, and where I am now.
A year ago...
I was depressed, homeless, and unemployed. I feel a bit embarrassed spelling that out, but there's no reason to hide it. I had hit rock bottom. My life had been flipped upside down and I was left with a couple of boxes stuffed in the back seat of my grey Honda. I had just journeyed to a little town in upstate New York to my only refuge: Grandma's house.
I just want to take a moment to tell Grandma (I know she's reading) thank you. Without her, there would be no blog and I'd still be a broken person. Grandma. Not only did you feed me and give me a couch to sleep on, but you loved me so hard it helped heal me. You gave me the space to put myself back together again and for that I'll always be more grateful than words can express. I love you.
Now back to the story... I had just settled in to Grandma's house, broken, tired, and desperate for a change. Amidst the noise of my life crumbling around me, I had one clear thought in my head: "There's no better time to buy the bus." I had previously spent a few months researching buses, as I had the dream of buying a bus, renovating it into a tiny home, and driving across the country (eventually). Well, it just so happened that down the street and around the corner from Grandma's house was a gift from the universe: a yellow school bus for sale in an old used car lot. It was the exact make and model I had previously decided was my dream bus. She was a 2003 Ford E450 short bus with a 7.3L Diesel engine. I had previously scoured the internet for this exact bus to no avail. And yet, there she was. Talk. About. Divine. Timing.
Two crazy things happen when you hit rock bottom and you have nothing left to lose. The first, is a strange sense of clarity falls over you. My life was in shambles, and yet I never had a clearer vision of what was truly important and meaningful. The second, is well, I'm not sure what to call it. Some people call it bravery, but that's not quite right. It's this ability to just do things. You do these things because you have nothing to lose, nowhere to fall, and whatever it is you've decided to do means a whole hell of a lot. Your entire heart is in it. It's like a Hail Mary for your life. I had no idea what I was going to do after buying the bus, but I thought step 1 of having a bus was buying a bus. So I sold my Honda, and bought the bus for $200 more than what I sold my Honda for.
I still had no money, no job, and no idea how to renovate a bus. BUT.. I did own a bus. Step one... CHECK. Little did I know what was ahead in the next 12 months.
A LOT has changed. In news of the bus, she is partially renovated!! In a perfect world she would be finished, but I needed the time to put my life back together piece by piece. After buying the bus and doing research online on how to renovate it, long story short, I found Missy Miller of Skoolie Homes. She and her husband Jeff own a bus conversion company and have taken on my little bus project. The experts at Skoolie Homes are conducting the renovation piece by piece, as funding for the renovation slowly but surely comes in. The bus is fully designed, gutted, insulation and subflooring installed, and next week the entire framing of the interior will begin. Not only is the bus in the best possible hands, but with the success of my blog over the past 12 months, the interest for sponsorship has been peaked... What a dream that would be. I'm beyond grateful for how far it has come, and cannot thank Missy and Jeff from Skoolie Homes enough for believing in this project , even when I was a penniless stranger with just a bus and a dream.
In terms of everything else I am now a business owner (what?!), am dating my best friend, have a beautiful place to live, and most importantly I am HAPPY. Buying a bus wasn't the only life-altering decision I made over the past year, but I'll save those stories for another post. Every day I wake up grateful. And the times when I find myself impatient, I remember where I was just 12 short months ago. There's a long road ahead and I have no idea how this story will unfold, but I couldn't be more excited. Stay tuned for updates on the bus, and hopefully soon, life on the road.