Finally, I have made it to the finish line and Zoe has been completed. Now what? To understand the future we must understand the journey.
March 2018- November 2018 had to be some of the hardest months I have had to endure. I can’t honestly say I have handled or processed all the changes with grace. Luke and I got the bus in February and started the renovations in March. Shortly after my grandfather (Papa) passed away and it broke my heart. I had really never experienced true loss in my life until that moment on March 11th at 4am. When something so big changes in your life it makes you question your goals and choices. Papa was a provider for his family, an incredibly hard worker, and an amazing man….and here I was building a school bus to frivolously travel the continental world in. I stayed with my plan because I knew it was the right choice for me and that it would bring me happiness.
Building the bus was full of extremely hard days that really put my personal relationships in jeopardy. There were days my dad and I would butt heads and leave the bus angry without another word. There were days that Luke was so confused and beat down that he never wanted to return. We stayed strong and pushed through the challenges we faced. My dad, Chollo, and I worked endlessly in the mornings when we could and Luke would join me in the evenings when he got off work. Truly it was mentally and physically exhausting for all of us. Zoe is not an ordinary skoolie and I say that with pride because I know every bit of blood, sweat, money, and literal tears lead to my home that is perfect for me.
The final chapter of Zoe was one of the hardest to face and I write through tear filled eyes. Luke left and suddenly it was a broken dream, a girl, and 3 dogs with no plan. I couldn’t think about or work on Zoe because I had no idea what to do, I was completely lost. I knew that building the bus had taken a toll on the relationship but I saw the finish line. Unfortunately, I didn’t know I’d be crossing it alone. Day 3 I picked myself up because it was the only thing I knew to do. Zoe was always my dream, my passion, and I needed to complete and follow it. When I was right at the finish line my beautiful aunt, a true light in my life was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and was suddenly fighting for her life. My dad, his wife Amanda, and I worked tirelessly day after day until the bus was done so that I could come home to celebrate an early Thanksgiving before her surgery. You never know how precious life truly is until you see someone you love struggle to keep theirs. The surgery was a success and each day she is getting better. We, as a family still have a fight ahead of us but I feel so fortunate that I can be here for these important moments.
So now that I have been heart broken, lost, and beaten down over these past few months I ask myself, now what? I have no routine, no plans besides going to Durango, and I am still lost. One thing that has been a true light in guiding me is my home. It brought my dad and I so much closer and I know we both have so much pride in Zoe. I was able to be here for the holidays, here for my aunt, and I am so thankful. My home gave me the chance to be close to my mom and spend time with her and my family before taking off on my journey. It gave me the opportunity to spend the winter in Durango snowboarding with my best friend. Building Zoe taught me lessons and gave me life skills that I will forever be thankful for. Having a tiny home/Skoolie has given me a beautiful online community that has become family. For Zoe, I am thankful.
I know I always post on social media about this but sometimes I feel like I could never repay my dad for what he did with Zoe, for me. He spent days upon days working, brainstorming, often losing sleep, researching, planning, problem solving, and still being an incredible dad to me. He never quit on me, although he joked about it frequently. I will forever be thankful for him and what he did.
Everyones journey is unique and beautiful. I will always look upon this time with strength because despite everything that went wrong, I prevailed. If anyone ever faces doubt or challenges please reach out. You have a dream and it is worth fighting for.