Competing on the reality TV show House Rules had contestant Amy Garrett digging out some difficult memories, but facing those demons only made the 30-year-old stronger.
DIY novices Amy and fiancé Sean Cornish started out at the bottom, but the couple of four years have clawed their way back to become audience favourites for the final episodes this week, thanks to their positivity.
But underneath her happy exterior, personal trainer Amy was working through personal issues.
“It’s funny, [the show] has this way of bringing out anything you haven’t dealt with in the past. If you have a slight insecurity – the skeletons come out of the closet,” says Amy.
“For me, the self-doubt I had from my professional dancing days returned. I got that same anxiety from being in the kind of environment where you are constantly auditioning and being scrutinised.”
During the few hours of sleep she got every night during renovation weeks, the show occupied Amy’s thoughts so much, she had dreams – and nightmares – about it, but by her side through the tough times was Sean, who thinks Amy has grown as a person.
“Anyone in their own right, put in a situation like that where you are under so much pressure, would crumble,” says Sean (26)
The couple are grateful for support they received, and found working together only brought them closer. But while they can manage big projects in House Rules, the pair aren’t having an elaborate wedding.
“We want it to be more of a celebration,” says Sean
“People have seen us go through these highs and lows on this show. It’s part of our story now – and it’s exciting to think of spending the next 60 and 70 years together.”
Watch House Rules TV3, Tuesday-Friday, 7:30pm