How Building My Own Ikea Bed Taught Me A Life Lesson I Never Saw Coming

At 34 years old, no one can argue with the fact that I, a single woman over the age of 30, am a grown-up who has already learned more than her fair share of life lessons and cold truths about relationships (even though my mother tries to avoid any knowledge of this basic information).

As millennials so often do, despite what the news portrays, I’ve been paying my own bills and keeping my own house since I moved out of my parent’s home at the age of 21. I’ve lived on my own longer than I lived with my family growing up. I am a working professional with pets and plants and plenty more of the trappings that come with being an adult.

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But I never really felt like one until I bought my new bed.

I’m not a rich person. I’m a writer, after all. The few pieces of furniture I’ve purchased for myself have all come from IKEA, but most of my lot of things — my bed, for example — are either hand-me-downs or items I purchased from friends or picked up from curbs.

(New York City is expensive, y’all. I’m not above a moderate amount of dumpster diving if it means I get a new-to-me desk for the cost of lugging the thing back to my apartment.)

I’ve been sleeping on the same bed since I moved to New York in 2006. It’s a full-size number I acquired from some roommate’s boyfriend’s third cousin. You know that guy, the one who seems like he’s always giving perfectly good stuff away.

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