Humans are pretty adaptable. We have been known to survive the most adverse of situations, including the horror that is the UK winter.

I personally spent much of this year feeling in a ginormous rut. Not even just a rut; a deep, deep hole within a rut. I knew things had to change and so that’s what I did. Sean and I packed up our lives and headed to New Zealand.

Those first few weeks were pretty dang hard. Once the initial excitement wore off, we faced the reality of being jobless, living with my parents and having no support network of friends. I think we coped well with this in hindsight. We joined a gym and tried not to bite each others heads off too many times a day. Our blind faith ended up paying off and we landed an amazing job living and working on the stunning Rotoroa Island.

Within days I remember having the realization that this could be potentially be the coolest thing I ever get to do. I live on an island with beautiful beaches and rare New Zealand animals for crying out loud. But instead of that making me feel happy, I felt terrified. I don’t want to hit my peak at 24 and does that mean that if I have a bad day or I’m not making the most of it?

Lots of those kinds of thoughts swirled through my mind and continue to do so. I’ve been enjoying having beautiful backdrops for my instagram photos but all the while feeling guilty. Not because anything I post is a lie, but it’s the classic case of the highlight reel. I don’t post photos of the days when it’s pouring with rain or I’m checking white sheets for stains. You can’t tell from a photo that Sean and I get frustrated a lot because we are with each other TWENTY FOUR SEVEN (love you).

We feel incredibly lucky to be having this experience and are determined not to take it for granted. But the reality is, you do adjust to your surroundings. It’s impossible to live every day like you’re Amy Adams in Ever Enchanted. You also still get Hangry and have arguments with your partner even if you are living in paradise. That’s just life I guess. But gratitude is the best weapon against those feelings of vulnerability.

I guess what I’m trying to say to myself is that I need to relax, be present and not worry about what I’m going to do next. And to anyone that has looked at my photos and thought “bastard”, I hear ya! But I’m going to enjoy it while it lasts. If it makes anyone feel better we still have toilets to clean and that keeps us pretty grounded.