Where Are You From?

It’s a question I have been asked a thousand times. It’s also a question that is very difficult for me to answer. The thing is, I was born in one state, moved to another at the age of five, then another at the age of seven, and another at eight, and another at nine – and so forth. I have no discernible accent and when asked this popular question, I have to stifle the incredible urge to deepen my voice and reply, “Lots of different places.”

To make matters more confusing, I can honestly say that until now, I have never been to a place where I felt at home. “Where you are from” should be the place you think of as “home,” should it not? It should be the place you dream of returning to after a really hard week or a traumatic event or too many days of bad weather in a row. It should be a place you identify with and that ultimately, at the end of the day, makes you look forward to getting up in the morning.

It’s been decades since I’ve felt that way.

But I feel that way now. And so, after nearly thirty years of interviewing locations across the globe, I have finally made my decision. Iโ€™ve chosen my home. Because we can do that, you know. Home is not tied to birth or blood or material things. It’s not necessarily where you hang your hat and it’s not where you park your car. It’s whatever and wherever you want it to be. Hell, my daughter’s “home” is Saffron City in the fictitious (or so I think) Pokemon universe.

Kindly bear witness. From now on, when someone asks me, “Where are you from?” I know what I’m going to tell them.

โ€œSan Francisco.โ€ City by the Bay.

God, I love this town. โ˜บ

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6 Responses to Where Are You From?

  1. Lucy Loveridge says:

    I love it, too!

  2. Jess Leiva says:

    Hey Heather!
    A fellow San Franciscan huh! ๐Ÿ˜€ I knew I liked you for more than just your prolific and engaging writing. I am born and raised and haven’t left yet.
    Best Regards!

  3. Kim says:

    I grew up in the same town in So. California. I moved 1 town away when I got married. I moved 1 more town over when my kid started school. I have always felt at “home”. My dad moved to California when he was 5 from Tennessee. He has ‘tons’ of family there. My grandparents (when alive) kept in touch all the time. My dad still keeps in touch. I know stay in contact & have visited my family in Tennessee. It also feels like “home”. I agree that you don’t have to grow up in a certain place to call it home.

  4. Debbie says:

    Don’t blame you, I was born and raised in Rodeo! Just across the water and a little North on 80.

    The bay area was a great place to grow up. Live in Texas now, but I still go back and visit and it s still a beautiful place.


  5. Emily says:

    I’m from lakeville, minnesota. Currently reading ‘Hell Bent’, which prompted me to visit your site! I was stunned when you mentioned 35w and 77! Even more stunned when you said Annabelle’s apartment was in Burnsville. I had to see if you lived in the frigid state that is my home!

  6. HRKW says:

    Hi Emily – I used to live in Minnesota (four years), and was fresh out of the cold when I wrote Hell Bent. ๐Ÿ™‚ You know what they say – write what you know! Thank you for reading!