Dads Backyard Transformation On A Budget Helps Him Through Cancer
Fast approaching his 40th birthday, 2014 was not kind to a husband and father named Darius. He lost his job and all of his money. To add insult to injury, he noticed a couple of strange patches on his skin and was diagnosed with skin cancer. Interestingly enough, he says his backyard at the time resembled his life: downright depressing.
But no matter how bad he felt about his life, Darius realized that someone else out there probably had it much worse. After all, he has two healthy children, a loving and supportive wife, and amazing friends. So, Darius decided to do something very special for his family. He set out to build his kids their dream playhouse and a space where his wife could exercise outside. Best of all, his wife had no idea what he had planned.
Darius found design inspiration through Pinterest, which helped him visualize and problem solve. For his 40th birthday, he asked his friends and family to give him wood and lumber, of all things. He then surprised his wife with a five-day trip to New York City. By the time he got back from dropping her off at the airport, the lumber was waiting for him. He got right to work, and his daughters helped him through the entire process, cleaning and painting and cheering him on.
He built a deck. A pergola. A playhouse. A garden. And he did all of it on a budget, while taking care of his kids and trying to get healthy. The couple of times he ran out of money, he sought handiwork in order to buy more materials. Just amazing.
“The kids love their new space,” Darius wrote on his blog. “My wife loves our backyard. And I feel strangely satisfied. It felt good to build this. It sort of gave me a renewed verve for keeping going. Pursuing my dreams and taking the struggle that comes with that in stride.”
Instead of a backyard that symbolizes darkness and depression,the physical transformation mirrored his positive new outlook on life.
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