Runaway


If I had to point out one flaw about myself, it would be that I’m definitely not motivated by money.

They say that money doesn’t lead to happiness, but sometimes money can lead to freedom, which in turn, can lead to happiness. Most of the things in my life that make me happy involve money in some way; the Instagram-worthy food that I eat, the petrol for my car so that I can drive to beautiful locations for photo shoots, and even my phone bill, which keeps me connected to all of you every month. 

When I obtained my first ever casual job at KFC, I can remember my aunt telling me, ‘just think of the money, Carolyn’. I tried to think of the money, but all I could think about was ‘no amount of greasy chicken is worth the $7.80 I was earning per hour'. I just didn’t enjoy what I was doing and had no motivation.

The problem for me right now is that I’m not quite qualified enough to get a job in the field that I’m studying. Even though I’m saving up for an overseas holiday with my best friend and need all the money I can get, I can’t get out of the rut that is: I’m just not passionate about what I’m doing with myself while I’m on holidays.

My lacklustre work life has led me to fantasise a lot about getting away. I’ve thought about house sitting around the state/east coast, just to experience somewhere new. I’ve considered moving up to my uncle’s caravan park in rural NSW for the rest of the month and essentially becoming a recluse. Even another spontaneous trip to Sydney has crossed my mind.

So far, my commonsense attitude has prevailed and I have tried my best to ignore all of these temptations. However, last week I reached a point where I couldn’t stand feeling like I had no purpose anymore. I had to violently fight back the urge to just pack a small bag and get away from everything for a few days, just to clear my head.

At the height of this feeling, I spotted a field overlooking light saturated, rolling hills. It was the type of scene that just fills you with so much joy. Fresh air was blowing off the ocean over the horizon, the sun was just warm enough that you didn’t need a jumper. It was one of those sunsets that leave you feeling utterly inspired and content with things.

I called my best friend on a whim, hoping she was free to model for a few photographs. We ended up frolicking in the field for an hour, her twirling with my favourite blanket in hand, and me vicariously living through the scenes we were creating for me to capture.

While the shoot cured my need to run away from adult responsibilities, it was only a temporary solution. I kept looking at the photos, wishing I could just dive into them and never resurface. Eventually, I made the decision that, as irresponsible as it probably is, spending a few days away from my currently mundane life would probably do me the world of good. I managed to get a few days off for the end of this coming week and I’m planning on spending it completely unplugged and (mostly) by myself so that I can focus on my photography and my own wellbeing.

Hopefully, when I return, I'll be feeling a little more motivated to bring in those dollar bills and book that holiday overseas! 

photographyCarolyn West