For years, I’ve had a vintage Underwood portable typewriter on display in my home. It represents a time in my young life when I was going to sink or swim.
The teacher dismissed me from typing class in high school because I couldn’t take it seriously. After many rejections in the job market for my lack of skills, I bought a used typewriter, some instruction books, and set up my self-taught class on a table in the house I was about to lose.
Not only was I on the verge of foreclosure, my three-year marriage was ending, and I had a one-year-old daughter to support.
Learning to type kept the fear at arm’s length.
The hours of practice resulted in a decent paying job, but it was too late. I lost the house. It took some time, but we survived.
The typewriter speaks to my heart, to that young, unskilled, defiant, naïve, and terrified girl who did something about her situation.
This is the 20th story in the Objects as Waypoints Writing Project series.