Living in New Zealand: Why We Moved Here

I sometimes forget that not everyone who reads this blog has followed it from the beginning.  As a result, there are probably a few of you who wonder what made us decide to pick up and move across the globe to New Zealand.

We moved here for a pretty straightforward reason – Chris, my husband, was offered a job here.  It was (and is) a great job.  We talked about it, he came over for an interview, and when they offered him the position, we agreed to move here.

At the time, I said that we would live here for 3 years.  Kiwis and other expats laughed and said, “You say that now, but after a year you’ll never want to leave”.  These were the expats who purposely looked for a job outside of America, who wanted to leave the country.

That wasn’t us.  I was content to live the US.  I loved being close to family and the familiarity of it all.  When I was feeling the wanderlust, I’d take a vacation.  I didn’t feel the desire or pull that so many fellow expats have to move overseas, and yet I found myself boarding a plane, headed for New Zealand.

Why?

For me, it was more than a job.  It boiled down to one of the strongest motivators there is: love.

I moved here because I love Chris.  The job isn’t that important to me, though I’m glad that he has it and that he loves it so much.  I’m not in love with New Zealand (I like it a lot and there are many things that I love about it, but I’m not “in love” with NZ).  But I do love Chris, and I know how important his job is to him.  My feelings to NZ may change at some point, and perhaps a year from now I’ll find myself shaking my head while re-reading this post, laughing at how silly I was being, but this is where I’m at for now.

Will we always live here?  Again, to be honest… I don’t think so, but then again, I don’t know.  I’m enjoying it for the time being, but I miss our extended families.

We both made sacrifices in moving to New Zealand: I moved here, and Chris agreed to an apartment that was nicer than one he’d have picked out were the decision solely his.  Chris works at a job he loves, and I have the freedom to work a bit less while pursuing other interests and other things {granted, my “other thing” these days is taking care of Joe!}.

I wish that I had a more glamorous reason for why we moved here, but that’s all there is to it.  I’m sorry to disappoint you if you thought that that we were globe-trotters or jet-setters.  As my blog-friend Sarah said, “The facade has been lifted!”  We’re just regular people dealing with regular, everyday life issues that couples face regardless of whether they live in their home country or somewhere else 🙂

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Post to Twitter

11 comments

  1. rosemary says:

    hi there, an american here, living in new zealand these past nine years. i met my partner on the net many years ago, and guess who moved to new zealand from california, bag and baggage? lol its been a cultural struggle, from the start, i’m american of latin ancestry, my partner is english, wowie! its been fun though, and we’re happy together. the economic problems have thrown us some big curves and we’re a bit in limbo at the moment, but it could be worse. interesting blog. thank you.

  2. Laura says:

    Hey Jenny 🙂

    Originally, before reading more of your blog, yes I thought you and Chris were jet setters taking Joe along for the ride ha! I thought wow that’s amazing to live in such a different country but to be american. I think I wanted to live vicariously through your travel to NZ ha! I would move anywhere for my husband bc that’s what you do when you love someone. You will have many adventures to look back on one day and I think that’s fantastic! I understand how you must miss your family and some of the American culture though.

  3. Gabrielle says:

    Hi Jenny,

    Thanks for your reply and clarification. I did feel some resentment but from reading a blog things can be misunderstand and I guess it’s hard for you to express yourself in writing.

    And you’re absolutely right, it’s not unreasonable to want to be somewhere else, I miss my country, friends and family a lot, but I’m really happy here and I love NZ. I don’t know and I don’t think I will live here forever, but for now I’m loving it.

    For me it was a struggle to stay here, so now it’s an achievement in my life to be able to live here, but for you the doors were opened, so that makes a huge different I think. In any case, we’re both very lucky to be here.

    Cheers!

  4. Sarah says:

    Good post Jenny. We also moved here for my husband’s job, and I have many of the same feelings you do. With our first baby on the way, I especially feel the distance from my family. (And my mom and dad left this afternoon after their annual holiday to NZ, so you’ve caught me on an emotional day! LOL). Anyway, I’ve only been reading your blog for just a few months, so it was great to get this background. Have a great week!

  5. Jenny @ Practically Perfect... says:

    Hi Gabrielle,

    First off, apologies if this is a duplicate (I responded to your comment on my blog as well as via email).

    It’s sometimes hard to communicate very well through blogging, and I find that I need to go back and edit my entries to be a bit more clear. I’m sorry that I wasn’t clear enough. While I don’t love New Zealand, I do love my life, my husband, and the many friends that we have made here. I have said that I would like to go back to the United States, but I’ve also accepted the fact that my life is here for now. I don’t face each day with resentment, and I don’t hide away indoors – I work, play, and live my life with the knowledge that we have many blessings in New Zealand that are unavailable to people elsewhere in the world. That being said, I don’t think it’s unreasonable to want to be somewhere else, somewhere closer to our extended families, while still being grateful for the blessings we do have. I didn’t address all of that in this particular post for the sake of brevity and because I feel like I’ve covered it elsewhere, both on my blog and on other sites.

    I recognize that New Zealand has its own unique and varied culture, and it’s something to be enjoyed. I’m glad that you seem to have adapted to New Zealand so well – for many people, living here is their dream come true and that seems to be the case in your life 🙂

    Cheers,

    Jenny

  6. Gabrielle says:

    Hi, I’ve been reading your blog for a while and before I came to NZ some of your post where very useful but now that I’m here I feel like you were talking about some other place. I don’t mean to be disrespectful but it seems to me that you’re trying to find a life here that cannot be. This is New Zealand, not the US, and maybe you need to accept that fact and start enjoying more of this beautiful country. It’s a completely different culture, sometimes frustrating and sometimes rewarding, but different, so there’s no point on trying to compare them.

    You have said more than once on your blog that you don’t love it here and wish you could go back. I understand that not having your family here is hard, but my advice is to enjoy life in New Zealand as much as you can because I think you can’t get this lifestyle anywhere else. I mean, who knows where you’ll be in 5 years time.

    If you moved here for love then start to love your life here! <3

  7. Lindsay says:

    Hi – I’m Lindsay and I have been reading some of your old posts over the past few days. My husband and I just moved to Auckland from Dallas, TX last week. I just wanted to say hello and let you know I was reading!

  8. Katie says:

    I’ve been reading for a while and I was really impressed that you made the jump – it seems like a big step, but also that you did it for good reasons. I am curious, I know that your relocation was paid to NZ – will your husband’s job pay if/when he leaves, or would you have to find a stateside job that would also fund your moving back?

  9. Sara says:

    Ha, yes, the whole facade is up, just regular people, I agree. Some people get really gushy and think life is grand, when it’s really no different than theirs. I too moved for love so my partner can pursue his dream, and I remind myself of this when things get me down. On the flip side to you, I really do love it, and thought 1 year would be great and now I dont want to leave!

  10. Broot says:

    I think every place we go has its good points and its bad points. 🙂 But I must say that being here for the early childhood education portion of my kids lives has been very good. 🙂 (Yay Playcentre! 😉 )

  11. Hannah says:

    Thank you for being so honest! You have really given me a lot of perspective recently and I really appreciate more than you could know!

Comments are closed.