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  1. Hilary Tan says

    I lived in one country all my life, and never moved house or switched schools. I was stuck with the same classmates throughout elementary and most of high school. However, I didn’t keep any childhood friends and often wonder if it’s due to my autistic tendencies (although never officially diagnosed) or if I’m just really bad at keeping friendships. And yet, 8 years later, I’m still with my SO. I think he’s slightly autistic too (although never officially diagnosed) which may explain why we are so compatible. The chances of meeting someone who gets me is very slim, and I acknowledge that it’s rare in this day and age.

    Even though he is similar, he is very different. We’re different races and come from different backgrounds. Our daughter is a mixed race kid. I often wonder how she will feel growing up, that is, if she feels like she belongs to any specific race or culture. I wouldn’t be surprised if she feels the same way you do, since we will likely move around a lot and probably leave this country during her childhood. I wonder what the next generation will experience, and whether their coping mechanisms will be different or similar to our generation. I guess only time will tell. Thank you for sharing your views about this struggle and what it’s like being a multi-cultural kid.

    • Shelly DS says

      You know, Helen (crispy confessions) recently posted about being “Hapa” which apparently is half Asian half white. I didn’t know such a term existed, but apparently it’s almost like a whole culture in itself. Your kids will always belong as long as they feel loved. I’m sure both sides of your family are already doing so much of that. At the end of the day, it’s becoming more rare to find people that aren’t mixed or didn’t grow up in several places! Thanks for sharing, Hilary!

      • Hilary Tan says

        I follow Helen and yet I didn’t read that particular blog post. It did show up in my reader though! I was wondering what “Hapa” was and thought it was some kind of religion 😂 I think it’s beautiful that society has embraced interracial couples and mixed race babies! 🙂

  2. Markus + Micah says

    You are such an interesting person. With that background, I can only imagine the richness of your experiences. Also really in love with the thought of making your own traditions. I understand the struggle given your background and this is just a brilliant solution. Well done!

  3. Azilde Elizabeth says

    I dont have any childhood friends either. I read once that every 7 years you loose those friends and get new ones. It seems to be true for me anyway. This world is very different. I’d like to think most ppl are more accepting than before. Alot of marriages are interracial I have noticed including mine. My parents are Dominican. I was born and raised here in America with Dominican culture. My husband is mulatto. His mom’s side is Irish and dad’s is from the Virgin Islands. My kids are multiracial and only speak English. Even though I was born and raised in the US I have learned plenty American cultures from my husband. For example, I new Madonna and Michael Jackson as they are world known but have learned about soul music etc LOL always learning! I loved this post. Nice getting to know you Shelly ❤️

    • Shelly DS says

      Thanks hun! I didn’t know about the 7 year thing! It sounds very fitting, actually! Your family sounds awesome. We need more people like you who don’t care about a person’s race, heritage or culture. Love should see no limits!
      You have an awesome history 🙂

  4. Delicate and brutal says

    To be honest I thought it was an awesome thing that you lived im different countries growing up but I now see how challenging it was for you. I can’t imagine as a child moving around so much and leaving my friends. I always thought it would be so cool to learn different languages from living in different countries but I now see the stress and struggle that cteates in one’s identity. I still think you are one awesome chick even with the culture clashes 😀

    • Shelly DS says

      Thanks Amy! I am pretty awesome aren’t I 😛
      It can get frustrating at times, but it has been such a fun experience that not many have had. I don’t wish to change anything, I just want to finally settle down. I think that’s already happening 😀

  5. T. B. C... says

    We really enjoyed reading this and actually felt emboldened by the fact that you had lived in so many countries and had so much experience and knowledge on culture, language, traditions and the like. People could only dream of being in your shoes, a worldly wide view of the human experience. We think this is your strength, almost like a superpower and that is what you can pass on to your offspring. Citizen of the world who knows and understands so much more than a simple basic view of one village, one town, one language, one mentality of the people, one way of being. Sister, you are intersectional and that is beautiful and when people ask that question “Where are you from?” it is their inability to understand that you belong to the human race. They are the ones who see them selves as separate…they are the ones who should look at how to belong. You already do!

    • Shelly DS says

      Thanks so much for such a positive and intrigued perspective! I do wear this badge with pride, although it does sometimes feel frustrating to not belong anywhere specific. I wouldn’t change my past travels, I would only change my future. Now is the time to set my roots and settle down 😉

  6. Kayslee Decker says

    This sounds like my dream life 🤩😻😹 I’m a college student majoring in Spanish and French with a side of Greek and Guaraní so I can definitely relate to the “switching to different languages without even knowing it” thing 😹. I think I’m the opposite when it comes to background though. I grew up in the exact same house in the center of a landlocked state, my family has little to no cultural heritage to speak of, and as I’ve learned more about other cultures, I’ve grown to wish I was anything but Caucasian American (or United-Statesian), especially now. Hopefully we all find a place to belong, where we are or wherever we end up in the world 😊

  7. Michelle (Boomer Eco Crusader) says

    I had to smile at your comment about accents. My mother was born in Ireland, where she lived until she was 18. She moved to England at 18, and then emigrated to Canada 20 years later. When I was a teenager my friends would say “where is your mother from?” It has been 70 years since she left Ireland but she still has an Irish lilt to her accent.

    As for me, we arrived in Canada from England when I was 9. I quickly lost my English accent because it was just easier to fit in at school if I sounded like everyone else. It does come back when I go there or when people from England visit here, though. It makes my daughters laugh when mum starts talking with an English accent.

    • Shelly DS says

      Haha a globe trotter eh? I always read your posts in a British accent, mainly because I keep thinking you’re British! Well you are British but you know what I mean. Why did you guys move to Canada? The British weather wasn’t gloomy enough? 😏

      • Michelle (Boomer Eco Crusader) says

        You’re not too far from the truth. My dad had respiratory issues so the damp, industrial northern English air wasn’t good for him at all. His sister had moved her family to Canada a few years before us so she convinced him to move here too.

  8. Patty Gordon says

    I’m a military brat who lived all over for the first 13 years of my life. I feel like complete alien about 90% of the time No matter where I am. I so relate to this post!.

  9. Jenny Pink says

    Thanks so much for sharing your experience! I’ve lived in a few countries myself and one of the things they just love to ask is where you’re from. It can get othering, to be honest.

  10. daciar says

    While my experiences aren’t on a global level like yours, I was born and raised in California until we moved to the Midwest. Until probably high school I was told my accent was funny or strange. Then we moved even more south and I experienced another culture shock.

  11. Helen says

    I loved reading this! Thanks for sharing! I can see that it’s downright awful to have to meet new people every few years. Since I was 5 I grew up in the same city in America and I always wondered what it would have been like if my dad had stayed in the military & travel every few years. I feel like I would have loved the experience of getting to know a new culture and place but there are downsides as well.

    I understand the clashing of the cultures though. I experienced that all my life growing up with a Korean mom and eating Korean food and speaking Korean at home, and then speaking English/eating American food outside the home.

  12. Aspa(styleandboleros) says

    Very interesting! To tell the truth I immediately thought that you are from Brazil ,lol! I am Greek,I have lived a while in Spain, my boyfriend is Spanish but I write in english on my blog about healthy lifestyle and mexican culture and music. I don’t know why but in a previous life should be Mexican lol

  13. The Caffeinated Powerhouse says

    This is such an interesting post,Shelly. I started following you recently and you’re right, by your posts, I assumed you were Portuguese. Sybr I thought a little South African, too. Thank you for sharing. Those aren’t things one would realize about such a life without it being explicitly shared.


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