Photos by Jenna Woodward Photography
As of today, I’ve lived in Leeds for five whole years. In that time, Leeds has become more a home to me than any other place ever has been. I went from feeling lost and lonely in this city, to being unable to imagine myself anywhere else. It is fitting, it feels, that we moved into our new home this weekend, too. Right now, I feel a little lost in between these four walls – everything I own is in boxes (although slowly less so) and there is no kitchen and it doesn’t feel like home. But it will do, in time. One day, I think I’ll find it difficult to imagine myself anywhere other than this home that we are building, slowly but surely.
In that time, I have become more myself than I ever have been, too. I suppose we are all becoming more ourselves every day, but I am comfortable with myself now in a way I definitely wasn’t when I first moved here. I’ve grown up here, properly, and learnt things about myself and found my way. I am grateful to this city, for helping me with that.
I am also grateful to Leeds for bringing me so many of my favourite people. People who are as close to me as my family. We’re all transplants here, thrown together by luck and circumstance. When I moved here, they opened their arms to me and I hope that I have been able to do the same for others when they have made their way here, too. This family is not an exclusive one – we have our history together, sure, but that everyone is always so welcoming is my favourite thing about them.
So, Leeds. Here’s to another five years together, eh?