Kathryn Eis­man on lone­li­ness in a new city.

Sunday Herald Sun - Stellar - - Contents - as told to Tif­fany Dunk

There are enor­mous chal­lenges when you move to a new coun­try. For­get find­ing friends – first you have to ad­just to a new land­scape. When I moved to New York for a job, I was 21. I knew one per­son. I re­mem­ber feel­ing the city was so hard… and I was so soft.

I don’t think I left the apart­ment for two days. I wasn’t ready for it. Your nat­u­ral in­cli­na­tion is to stay home, but I learnt to force my­self out of my com­fort zone. The more often you do that, the more your world ex­pands.

If things are hard or un­com­fort­able, peo­ple think they’re bad or they haven’t done them “right”. But the great­est things in my life, such as child­birth, have all been hard and un­com­fort­able. I’ve be­come more re­laxed with that.

Learn­ing the New York way of busi­ness was interesting. Ev­ery­thing is done yes­ter­day; it’s in­cred­i­bly cut­throat and straight to the point. It in­flu­enced my way of do­ing things more than any other place I’ve lived. As a re­sult, I’m hon­est and a straight shooter who doesn’t be­lieve in am­bi­gu­ity.

I had to harden up and learn how to sell my­self in New York, which didn’t come nat­u­rally to me as an Aus­tralian. So when I came home years later to be the face of Arena TV, I had to re­learn how to do busi­ness again. A year and a half later I re­lo­cated to LA with my hus­band Si­imon. Skill sets are trans­fer­able, but you still have to build ev­ery­thing else from scratch when in a new city. Ul­ti­mately, it’s em­pow­er­ing – you re­alise you could be dumped any­where and find your way.

I’m close to my fam­ily; if any­thing can make me cry, it is the idea of spend­ing years away from my par­ents. It wasn’t un­til I moved over­seas that I re­alised I needed a friend in a way I never have be­fore. I had a best friend in New York who was mar­ried when I was sin­gle. I never rented an apart­ment that wasn’t within walk­ing dis­tance, so I could join her fam­ily din­ners. Now

Si­imon and I are that cou­ple to many of our friends in LA; I like the en­ergy that other peo­ple bring into our home.

Af­ter be­com­ing a mum in 2013 I felt a cre­ative surge and more in­spired pro­fes­sion­ally. I wanted to cre­ate a blog that cel­e­brated a woman in to­tal­ity. High Heel Jun­gle launches in the States later this month, but I wanted to un­veil it here first. I’ve been away for so long, but I’m still Aus­tralian. I never want that to go away.

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