For most parents, sharing a bed with their child is an occasional occurrence when they have a bad dream or simply have a fear of sleeping alone. But for single mom Tia, this is a nightly event with her 3-year-old son. Nylan isn’t having nightmares; it’s just the only adequate space for him to sleep.

Most nights are restless, uncomfortable, and cramped for both of them.

Tia has always lived with her parents because they really didn’t want her — or her sister — to leave. They like having their grandchildren around. But three families in a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home is a little crowded.

“I decided that I had to make a change,” Tia said. “My son is getting older and bigger and is going to need his own space. I need my own space.”

But what sort of change? Homeownership seemed a distant dream. Placing a down payment, paying interest; it sounded overwhelming — until Tia’s friend Tiffany introduced her to Habitat. That’s when Tia realized her dream of buying a home might be possible.

“After seeing how affordable it was, I decided to take that step for a better lifestyle for my son and I,” she said.

Tia’s leap toward homeownership has caused some changes in her life. She is taking steps to start a budget and has been volunteering with Habitat to earn the sweat equity required as part of the program. She has put in hours doing everything from framing houses and taking financial classes to helping set up for events and volunteering in the ReStore.

The time and effort is worth it, Tia said: “The home will be mine. Something I worked hard for, for my son and I. It has been a process, but it has showed me that great things take time.”

Meanwhile, Tia and Nylan still are sharing a bed.

Having their own rooms is one of the things they are both looking forward to in their Habitat home. Nylan’s will be Spider-Man themed.

Talking about her son and her new home, Tia started to cry. They were tears of thanks and disbelief that her once far-fetched dream is now becoming a reality.

“It’s real,” she said. “I didn’t think I was going to get this far.”