In the golden hour on a beach in Rarotonga on July 7th 2022, through tear filled eyes Damon and Dianna faced each other and said “I do”.
I am 44 years old and have lived a life filled with chaos, adventure, heartbreak and joy. Damon arrived on the scene with his eyes wide open and his heart potentially ready to take on the hurricane that he’d been watching from a safe distance for some time before bravely approaching.
Three years after our romance began, he has changed his career and life, and dedicated his time, his knowledge and his whole heart to protecting my interests and building a legacy of innovation, regeneration, inclusiveness, collaboration and hope. He has taken my appointed position on the ChargeNet board and is doing an incredible job honouring and protecting the spirit and values of community, carbon divestment and ethical business practices that saw us begin what started as a small social enterprise and has evolved into the world’s largest privately owned and operated charging infrastructure. Pretty solid effort all round if you ask me.
Together we are building our regenerative agriculture and eco-tourism start-up. Damon handles most of the BAU, contractors, and strategy while I help with the guest turnovers, social media, events and general PR.
It’s mostly a pretty blissful existence and Papatuanuku blesses us with signs we are indeed on the right track such as the discovery of taonga species of plants and birds such as the koura and tuna (eels) we have spotted recently.
Nowadays, I try to steer clear from too many stressful or difficult situations. I’ve traded in my globetrotting to focus on my family, our farm, and mental hygiene.
The pandemic allowed me time and space to reflect on my priorities, establish boundaries, clear out any dead weight of “friends” and “family” who obviously did not care for me and caused grief, confusion and sapped energy and resource to an extent that drove me to a harrowing nervous breakdown.
Life is not perfect or simple, despite the changes I have made and the boundaries I protect there are still of course challenges. I do need to stay very focused on protecting my mental health and it’s a daily journey. I realised while we were away at our Rarotongan elopement that the stress of handling large groups taxes me rather than feeds me. In the past I craved such external validation, today I need to be more gentle with myself and try to manage the level of duress I am exposed to. This realization however means that even on my very bad days I still experience gratitude and celebration.
You’ve all heard me say all of these things in many different ways through my blogs, and I will wrap this up and keep it short.
The message I am desperate to impart to you if you’ve taken the pains to read this is simple:
If you are going through hell, keep going. If you feel lost, be brave and instigate changes so you can find your core and be true to yourself. If you are lonely, seek comfort and demand respect and encouragement because you are a magical, powerful, complicated being and your time and loyalty is a privilege and you get to choose who can feel the warmth of your glow.
Do not tolerate or accept toxic or negative behaviour from your partner, family or friends, no matter what history or connection you might have. Be brave. Be bold. Be clear in asking for and receiving the Love and light returned to you that you share with the world because we are all getting older and none of us will get out of this adventure alive.
So do not settle until you find a soulmate who has your back, that you can trust and who trusts you, who thinks you are filled with magic, and champions you both in person and in your absence. If you can find all that then you might even want to go the whole hog and make them a marriage stat – of course that’s a personal choice.
I did however. And it’s so exciting to know we have an adventure of a lifetime waiting for us to tackle together.
Thanks for reading.
Thanks for marrying me Damon.