It was supposed to be temporary… one, maybe two summers. Well, it’s been 10 years since we moved to Corolla, NC! Indeed, time flies and goes by way too fast!
First time, I came to the United States was as a student in 2004 for the program called Work and Travel. Then, I came back a year later in 2005 for another season. When I came here in 2006, I brought my boyfriend (now husband). We both had graduated from Universities in Poland so there was really nothing that kept us going back home anymore, like kids, house or school. That’s why we decided to stay in the United States a LITTLE longer. 10 years later, I’m married and I have two precious kids.
All these years we’ve been living in the same house in Corolla, NC. Every year, we debated where we would like to live and raise our children. Every year, my husband and I would try to figure out whether it was a good time to go back to Poland or whether we should stay here another year. Corolla has become our comfort zone and we have had a hard time to give it up. If you had a chance to live or visit the Outer Banks, you would agree with me that this place has something that keeps you coming back here. It’s beautiful, it’s clean, it’s safe (safer than any other place I know), and it’s different. We walk five minutes to the beach; we live in a home with a pool, a hot tub, a large deck and plenty of space to have friends over for a barbecue. We observe deer walking by our house while we drink our morning coffee, we see dolphins jumping in the ocean in the evening and we are lucky to watch WILD horses (!) on the North Beach of Carova, NC, which is just 10 minutes driving distance from our house! Some call it paradise and after over 10 years of living here I can say, “Yes, we’ve been lucky to live in a beautiful corner of the world!” However, regardless of all its beauty, this paradise has never become our real home. We’ve been homesick. We miss our families, food, Polish traditions and culture just to name a few. We want to celebrate our families’ events such as birthdays, weddings, holidays and we want to be there in hard times too, when they need us the most. We just miss Poland. We have realized that Poland is a place where we would like our kids to grow up.
There is no better or worse country, no easier or harder life, it’s just different. I think we are the generation of immigrants who travel a lot, discover other countries and their cultures, meet other personalities, and try to find a better place. Many times we are looking for that “greener grass” thinking that there is something better on the other side, not where we currently live. Our hearts are divided. I wish we could live in more than just one place at the same time or that we could take a piece of one and bring it to another place. We are so excited and nervous to announce that… WE ARE GOING BACK HOME!! What a relief that we finally made this decision. Although we don’t have the exact day set up yet, we will be home for Christmas this year!
Our oldest son, Tobiasz (4 years old), is so excited for this move. He can’t wait to live close by to his grandparents and aunties. The little one, Mateusz (6 months), is just too young to understand yet.
Soon, we will start packing our belongings that we have collected for over 10 years. Oh man! I will sure need lots of coffee to keep my energy up, your words of encouragement and plenty of cardboard boxes.
Another exciting announcement is that Koko Studio Photography is moving to Poland with us!! Yeeeey! I will be packing my photography gear and I will bring it with me! I’m super excited I will have a chance to photograph all those wonderful families that ask if I could live closer to take their pictures too! You asked for it and I’m coming!!
With moving back to Europe, there will be lots of changes to my business. I’m happy to share one of them with you today. My business will have a NEW NAME! It’s not going to be Koko Studio Photography anymore (my baby!). My business will now be under my name, Anna Kokoszka Photography.
I know there are lots of people who are excited to have us back in Poland. I am also aware of how many of my dear friends and family we will have to leave here. It’s going to be tough to say goodbye. We will miss you and we will miss this place that all in all was our temporary home for the last 10 years. Cheer up! You all remember, if you are ever coming to Europe, you need to contact me as soon as you start planning your trip so I can host you in Poland and take beautiful pictures of you during your travels! I love you all! ?