Where Am I From?

Everyone belongs to many different communities and/or groups defined by (among other things) shared geography, religion, ethnicity, income, cuisine, interest, race, ideology, or intellectual heritage. Choose one of the communities to which you belong, and describe that community and your place within it. (Approximately 250 words)

“Where are you from?” asked the guest speaker, picking me from the crowd. Just as I was about to answer, a passing thought squeezed my mouth tight and slapped me hard in the head. A conscious side of me perceived this simple question as “extremely difficult to answer”. For all my life I have considered myself Korean since I was physically born in Korea. As I fell deeper into the thought I realized I may be considered Filipino since I was raised in the Philippines.

However, the community that shaped my personality, ideology, and language was the international community at Cebu International School, exposing me to various cultures and perspectives of the world. In a matter of seconds, all of these thoughts jumped from one neuron to another, instantly shaping my identity as an individual. An intensive war of internal thoughts thundered across my brain. The speaker looked at me with a confused face as I remained still with a tangled mind, questioning my identity. Not Korean and not Filipino, I realized that mere nationality cannot define where I am from.

The community I belong is a unique one: the international community. It is a place where unity is derived from differences: we progress by accepting each individual’s uniqueness....

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