Three key memories come to mind when asked why we opted to move an hour south of Sydney after establishing Quirky Kid, a child psychology clinic in Woollahra 10 years ago.
The first is a visual of me hanging out the washing while looking up at the underbelly of a 747 as it roared over the Inner West towards Mascot. With our newborn baby, Olivia, on a blanket close by, I was well and truly ready to start searching for a cleaner environment to raise a family.
The second was standing on a whale-watching platform at a small coastal school between Stanwell Park and Thirroul. I remember hatching a plan to meet the principal and see if they were taking new enrolments.
Spotting a great space for a clinic in Austinmer is the last. Everything started to line-up and it was then just a case of taking the plunge. So, we opted for fresher air, more space and a better value home, backing onto the bush with ocean views.
It felt like our quality of life had improved, except on those days when I needed to be in the city. At the time, I was very thankful for ‘quiet carriages, WI-FI and express trains’. I’d jump on, whip open my laptop and write for an hour and a half each way. That’s how I finished writing my 80,000 word PhD thesis in 2016.
Since then I’ve worked on doing less commuting by growing a very special team of psychologists, graphic designers, illustrators and support staff. Now I see the bulk of my clients in Austinmer – a small beach-side village, 20 minutes North of Wollongong.