When I say the word ‘home’, I am no longer referring to New Zealand. I am speaking of my flat, my town, London – London has officially become my new home.
It feels like more things have happened since I arrived than the combined endeavours of 2014. I have achieved so much since leaving the warm, Summery land of New Zealand, and I couldn’t be more proud. In my first blog post I quoted my favourite all time quote, or in my own opinion, more of my personal mantra:
“The more you live for yourself, the more you end up living for.”
And I still wake up every morning and live by it.
It’s rather interesting becoming so liberated so quickly; I had to quickly understand that the only priority I have now is my own survival. From the small concept of traveling alone and being able to see whatever I want to see, to the priority of my day to day life schedule, I have to make every single decision for myself. The small things of an adult life, that I now have had to do on my own, are building me into a more confident and independent individual with every passing moment. I find this new life of organising bank accounts, finding my flat, remembering to buy groceries, and forgetting to do my washing until I literally have run out of underwear, all overwhelmingly exciting. Yes it is more responsibility, but the freedom that comes with living for yourself is such an empowering thing.
I live in a house with, let’s say, a fair few other young adults – from a tall Irishman to a bunch of Kiwis and Australians. I have made some good friends living with a larger household than the usual, and I wouldn’t swap it for anything. Of course there are things you have to give up, like a bit of privacy and space, but the added bonuses of living with a full house outweighs those petty negatives in a flash.
I have good conversations with my housemates on a regular basis, and we all agree that the social aspect of where we live is all a part of the London experience. Due to the amount of people, you can almost guarantee someone, somewhere in the house, will do something with you (if they haven’t already invited you out). I go out to dinner with a person one night, and go running with another the next morning; I can wake up at 2am and join someone watching a movie, I sometimes even get home from work and everyone’s going out partying; I literally have the opportunity to socialize 24/7. The best part about it is that people know people, so you end up making friends through friends. Coming here, you just need to realize that London is a huge scary place if you are too fearful of mingling.
I never have been a huge drinker and in New Zealand if I was to go out with friends I would either be a one drink sort of girl, or the sober driver home. However, my own choice to stay clearheaded hasn’t stopped me from going out with a group from the house; I still go out to have a laugh with everyone – even if it is only lemonade or soda water in my glass. Being so venturous towards being confident with new people and socializing makes all the difference when it comes to truly living out an experience. You have to step out of your comfort zone, and I know I say this a lot, but it’s the complete and utter truth. If it wasn’t for my ability to put myself on the line, I would not be where I am today.
“Paige, want to come to Amsterdam with me and Pip?” – Um, do you even have to ask?
I guess where I’m taking this is back to, and 100% based on, the idea of my mantra. Of course, I have friends and family, and the most beautiful home, back in New Zealand, but because I decided to live for myself, and move here, I now have so much to live for. I have a city and Europe waiting to be explored, I have a new healthy lifestyle – which has allowed me to drop the pounds faster than I thought possible – I have new friends who share the same passions, and I have a new found respect for myself.
I know the quote is accurate, and I will endure to follow its meaning in my life as much as possible.
So should you.