Amanda liked to build things. She designed and built a treehouse in her yard. It had three bedrooms, a small kitchen and a living room. Two of the bedrooms were for her cats, the other one belonged her. She was an only child but she knew that if she had a brother she wouldn’t let him set foot in her space. The brothers of all of her friends broke everything they touched and made a mess. Amanda was neat. She liked to know where everything was, that way she never wasted time looking for her equipment. She painted the entire treehouse white, inside and out, but the roof was teal because that was her favorite color.
Alexander and Victoria, the aforementioned cats, loved living in the treehouse. Birds were everywhere and even though they promised Amanda they wouldn’t bother them, they enjoyed stalking and chasing them away when she wasn’t there. Sometimes the cats slept together, curled up on the floor, or on Amanda’s bed, but generally they liked having their own rooms.
Amanda’s parents, Colin and Fay, were happy that their daughter enjoyed making things with her hands. They often wished the tree house was larger because they would have liked to stay there as well. It was only later that they found Amanda’s portfolio which, many years later, sold for well over eleven million dollars and is now housed in the Museum of Architecture in New York.
Amanda grew up and designed and built some of the most beautiful buildings in the world. No one ever got in the way of her dream, instead she was allowed to find her own way, right from the start. When she speaks at colleges, or at conferences, she always tells everyone to follow the thing that drives them. To do the thing they can’t live without, the thing that makes them want to get up in the morning and forget about going to bed at night. And she always tells people just to be themselves.