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The ache for home lives in all of us. The safe place where we can go as we are.

Maya Angelou

 

Four years ago, I moved from the South, where my family has lived for six generations, to attend Stanford University in California. Nearly every day since -- especially Election Day 2016 -- I have felt half and half. 

Half Mexican. Half Kentuckian. I am the granddaughter of immigrants; and also, of a gas station manager and an Appalachian coal miner, the descendants of indentured servants.

Half "liberal snowflake." Half "Southern Belle." In Kentucky, being a Latina, vegetarian, feminist, with gay parents automatically makes me "a radical." But at Stanford, I didn't quite fit in either. I was told, "No offense, but I think Southern accents make people sound less smart." When I told people there where I was from, the most common response was, "I'm sorry."

Half of me wants to be an ambitious, Nasty Woman who always leans the hell in. Half of me is exhausted from eight years of always working toward "the next thing," as many of my peers and I are so good at doing. I've had a life-threatening immune disorder since I was five-years-old, and I also have the BRCA1 gene: I want to be someone who prioritizes my health and my relationships over my "success," but I don't always know how.

I think many of my friends and family, in both of the homes that I love, might feel half and half, too. This blog is about finding whole and whole.