Leanne Wei

Home is where the heart is

Home.  What does it mean to you?  Having lived in four continents in the last 24 years of my life, it's a difficult word to phrase in one definition.  For me, home is a feeling.  Being away from family is tough, but ever since I started travelling when I was 19, I've been very lucky to have created "homes" wherever I go.  Like a chameleon is always changing colours, I find myself constantly adapting to new cities, people and cultures. 

When you're unable to always be close to your family, friends become just that.  Home isn't always a location.  It may not even be the place where you grew up; it's where you feel like you belong.  I think that's one of the best things about New York City.  No matter how different or quirky you might feel, there are people here who "get" you.  It's a city that celebrates creativity and uniqueness.  I am a Chinese girl who grew up in South Africa, but the irony is that I've never really felt fully Chinese or South African.  I'm a sort of a little bit of everything, and that's okay.  It's just how I was made.  It took me 20 years to realize this, but don't worry too much if you ever feel out of place.  I believe that everyone in this world has a talent.  Everyone has a purpose.  We are collections of every single experience and who we are is what marks our unique fingerprint in the world.  You don't have to be like everyone else, you just have to be you.  

Dress by Claire Lung
Photography by Duke Nguyen