Keeping Up With...

Carolyn Keep

Home time.

Major life decisions tend to keep one’s mind up at night just ticking away... In my case, I go to sleep fine; it’s the mornings that my mind gets restless and I start thinking of all the detail in mentioned ‘major life decision’. Pros, cons, excitements, worries, logistics, all that jazz…It’s why I find myself sitting up in bed at 5am on a Friday morning after 4 hours sleep ‘dear diary-ing’…it’s the only way to get things out of my head, and into reality.

What is keeping me awake this fine morning? A love affair. In fact, it’s a love story that rivals that of The Notebook… although this particular love affair (sorry to disappoint) is about a place and not a person.

Despite the last 5 years of my life having been more than I could have ever hoped and dreamed of here in Melbourne Australia, I haven’t been able to shake my connection with New Zealand. Never been able to truly just let it go.

I left Auckland as a 29 year old with bright lights in my eyes and big dreams about what I wanted my life to ‘look like’ when I moved to Australia. Funnily enough, my plans were thwarted and instead I had an even more magical time than I ever could have imagined. Life has a funny way I am learning, of putting us right where we should be so we can learn and grow and have the opportunity to become our best selves, not only the selves we are comfortable with, as half the time, that’s only half of what we are capable of.

It took me about a year to fall in love with Melbourne…It was a slow burn, a rocky start, but wow, once I realised I had fallen, there was no getting me out of that relationship! I was blessed with amazing job opportunities, and even more so, my life was enriched by the most amazing humans that crossed my path, and chose to stay (for which I am forever grateful.) I would go home to New Zealand to visit my family and friends from time to time and I would always find that when I got back to Melbourne, it took me about a week and a half to adjust back to my happy reality and life here…what was that about?! The longer I stayed here, the more I loved it, but I still couldn’t break the ties I had with home…I guess, deep down, I maybe knew home and I would always end up together, despite where I went in the interim…I mean, that’s true love right? That innate knowing that you are where you should be?

So, I guess I can’t fight it any longer…I’m not going to deny the fact that home is where my heart is and I’m packing up my life in Melbourne and heading back to Auckland. I’m petrified. I’m excited. I’m sad. I’m all the feelings you get when you commit to a choice and hope like hell that it's the right one (knowing deep down that it is.)

I’ll be landing in Auckland on December 1st and it won’t be a visit. This time, I’m not leaving.

I have a lot of things to be excited about…I am going home to a very different reality than the one I left 5 years ago and I can’t wait to see how my life unravels. I also realise that I am not the (slightly naïve) 29 year old that left New Zealand 5 years ago, and I am intrigued to see how I will get on with home when I have nowhere else to go, now that I’m an ‘adult.’

I’m getting teary sitting in my bed here in Melbourne, listening to the birds wake up, feeling just so grateful for all the wonderful things in life that have occurred for me in the last 5 years here, and I send so much love to those who have blessed my journey, those I have loved, those I have been challenged by, those I have laughed and danced with, those I have learned from…I will be taking all the experiences that I have had here in Melbourne home with me in my heart, but it’s time for me to go. I know New Zealand won’t be the same for me now, because Melbourne, you changed me I know it...But it’s time for me to start a new chapter in my life, and that will be played out on the same land as my family.

Who knows what my next 5 years will look like…as with my last 5, I expect they could be even more wonderful than I plan, and I’ll roll with that.

Melbourne, thank you for ALL you have given me. I will love you for life and I will miss you every day and you will always be my home away from home...

Auckland, see you in 6 weeks.

I need to take a deep breath…

Caro x

Posted: Friday 17 October 2014


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