About Me — Vanessa Hinojosa
“Where Did You Come From? Where Did You Go?”
I was born in McAllen, Texas back in 1987. (Good grief, I’m old.) We moved around a lot while growing up. In Texas, we had lived in Irving, twice. In California, we’d lived in Anaheim a few times and Corona for a very short time. Still, we always moved back to McAllen where we had our extended family.
“Is There Anything You Liked From Each Place?”
Each time we moved to California, it was more or less the same experience: I felt like a fish out of water and it was hard for me to make friends. However, in Anaheim, I was always happy to know that I was only a few short blocks away from Disneyland. I could see the fireworks from the backyard before I went to bed! I’ve gone to Disneyland so many times in my life to the point where I actually got sick of it by age 18. Corona was temporary, but I’ll never forget having to make a U.S. flag as a class project. (I was either supposed to be Betsy Ross or we were celebrating her birthday due to the school being named after her.)
Irving, Texas is just a little West of Dallas, but still in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. I felt like I was the only kid in school. Everyone else seemed to know what they were doing and what they wanted out of life at the two schools I had been in. The good news is that we were about 30 minutes away from Six Flags Over Texas. We went what felt like every weekend! At the end of the day, we were always tired and that meant no fighting or arguments. It was nice.
I’ve always loved McAllen. I can say with pride that my family and I have all watched McAllen flourish. My grandparents’ neighborhood used to be surrounded by fields. Empty fields of golden grass. I used to be able to see my elementary school from the backyard, clearly. I could wave from the corner and someone at the school could have seen me! Now, there’s a park, another neighborhood, a gas station, and restaurants.
“So What Do You Actually Do?”
To put things simply: I am a stay-at-home mom. I am a homeschool teacher to my older son and a slave to my toddler. I cook, clean, and hold down the fort while my husband works outside the home. There’s never a boring moment and because of that, I’m always tired.
“Why Are You on Medium?”
Originally, I wanted to build up a portfolio for potential clients. (I was told Medium is the perfect place to start writing.) I went on a hiatus when we had to move. Then, I got married, started homeschooling my son, and got pregnant. I started writing a book during my pregnancy, but stopped earlier this year.
I came back to Medium because I really do love writing. I finally got over my fear of rejection and started writing articles that really spoke to me. Now I’m essentially just writing about any subject that comes to mind. Sometimes people read my content, other times… not so much.
“What Makes You Unique?”
Ha! Calling me unique is an understatement. (I’m not kidding.) Let’s start with my star-shaped birthmark on my leg. My mother said it started out as a little dot and over the first 4 or 5 years of my life, it grew into a star shape. In high school, my anemia and iron deficiency was so bad that I was always pale and having fainting spells. (I’m a light brown Hispanic. It even freaked me out!)
I cook with my nose. In a weird way, if I can smell an ingredient, it’s as if I’m tasting it. (My food comes out really good! At least that’s what my husband says.) Also, I’ve proven to my husband that if I know the ingredients to a meal, I’ll know if I’ll enjoy it or not before I take the first bite. Here’s another one, I can usually taste each ingredient in everything I eat. So yeah. I’m weird.
Oh yes. My Boxer mix, Coco Chanel. She’s such a sweetheart! She was born with a big head and a small body and she had a coffee-brown color to her with white fur on her paws. My father got her for me as a birthday gift. He wanted to name her Coconut because of how she looked and I told him she’s better off being called Latte. He didn’t like that, so he insisted on Coconut. Then I looked at how she acted like a little princess, so I named her Coco Chanel.
She loves to nap and play. When any of us are sad, she puts her head on our lap. When I’m too weak or depressed and I’m lying on the floor, she’ll try to scoop my head up from the floor by burrowing her head under my neck. That’s when I know she wants me up. She’s such a wonderful dog!
“Have You Traveled?”
Oh yeah. Definitely. I’ve traveled to different parts of Texas, California, and Michigan. I’ve also traveled to England. Texas is hot, California has nearly perfect weather, and Michigan has so many treeeees!!! England has managed to preserve a lot of its history. Just that that Spring Break was sooooo dreary! I don’t believe we had any sun during our trip.
“How Is Your Life Right Now?”
I can honestly say that I’ve learned so much during my 2 years of marriage. I’ve learned what makes our marriage successful, what works for my ADHD, what works for my son’s ADHD, and that each kid is born being much different than the next. I’ve gained a new confidence, thanks to my husband. I can’t wait to see where my writing will take me!