This story originally appeared in the NZ Herald on the 17th of September.
I want to let you in on a secret. All this time while I've been having a relationship with Jacinda Kate Laurell Ardern, I've actually been secretly and covertly vetting her on your behalf, New Zealand.
Deep undercover, like a foreign military trained spy - only now am I prepared to reveal all. Unlike any OIA from the last nine years, here is my report with nothing redacted. This will include salacious secrets from the bedroom, but you'll have to read through the next bit to get to the good stuff.
Over the past few weeks New Zealanders from all walks of life have been discovering the charm, ambition and substance of someone who, truth be told, I had been secretly hoping to keep all to myself.
I selfishly thought it was just me that felt special in her company, but I see others now beginning to understand the rare gift she has in her abilities to listen, to understand, to problem-solve, and to communicate.
She is no longer having to dull her own light and I've been so incredibly proud to watch her become the person I knew she had bundled up inside her.
Trust me, she's only just warming up.
Jacinda is someone who so constantly thinks of others that she once woke in the middle of the night worried I was out of milk for my morning cup of tea.
So she got up and decided to soak some almonds at 2am, just to make me almond milk at dawn.
It was the best cup of tea I've ever had, and I hate almond milk.
She also does endless things without taking any credit. Like in 2016 when Te Puea Marae opened its doors to the homeless, she quietly arranged for two large freezers to be donated.
It should also be obvious from her choice in partner that she is totally unafraid of tackling challenging projects.
We met when I was in a bit of a low point in my life. Through her relentless support, planning and encouragement I stepped out to create what is now a dream international TV series. She brings the best out of those around her.
She is also the most honest person I have ever met, which is why it really hurts seeing all this white noise nonsense about her "secret tax plans", which simply do not exist.
Can you imagine how incredibly difficult it must be, after nine years in the wilderness of Opposition, to leave options on the table because you're so determined to fix a problem like housing? Options for the opposition then create a false campaign of fear and lies with?
It would have been by far the easier route to obfuscate or even drop it entirely, but she is doing it her way to allow herself the room to make the right informed decision for New Zealand. It's a brave move, and a bloody good indicator of the type of upfront person she is.
Right now we are at a crossroads as a country and have an amazing chance to not only arrest the drift, but to do something really truly special here.
So as much as it might mean spending less time with her over the next good while, New Zealand I am prepared to share her with you because I really do believe we will all benefit from that - and I really do believe she has so much more to offer.
It's time to be brave and it's going to be okay.
Finally, it wouldn't be a true tell-all without some sort of boudoir secret. So here goes.
Jacinda has this thing she does in bed. It happens just as we are moving in close to each other, looking into each other's eyes. At that moment, where I'm about to lose consciousness, she leans in and whispers some worry of the world she has been mulling over in my ear.
This jolts me wide awake, only for her to then instantly nod off.
I've said too much.