Joanna Gaines Revisits Her Elementary School

Joanna Gaines

Getty Joanna Gaines at the 2022 Creative Arts Emmys.

Joanna Gaines took a trip down memory lane. The “Fixer Upper” star revealed on Instagram that she recently revisited her elementary school during the writing of her upcoming memoir.

“A chapter of my story led me back to the halls of my elementary school, to some of the stories I was told, and believed, and let define me for far too long,” she wrote. “Stories about who I should be, names I was called, reasons I needed to hide certain parts of me. So I went back to rewrite some of those lies with the truth about who I am. But the sweetest part of the day was reuniting with my kindergarten teacher Ms. Primm, who could always make me feel safe simply with her smile.”

In a video, the 44-year-old donned a gray t-shirt and jeans while she rewalked her alma mater. The clip shows her hugging faculty and presumably chatting with her former teacher, Ms. Primm.

“I can’t imagine I’m the only who has felt the need to take back pieces of my story,” she continued. “What about you? What lies do you need to rewrite with truth?”

Gaines and her husband Chip rose to fame in 2014, renovating homes around their community of Waco, Texas on “Fixer Upper.” Its success spurred books, home decor lines, spinoffs and even a network. The couple shares five children.

Joanna Gaines Tells Her Story in New Memoir

The Magnolia Journal

Nick Kelley/Magnolia Journal The Winter issue of Magnolia Journal, available on newsstands and online starting November 11, 2022.

For her upcoming book, “The Stories We Tell,” Gaines is taking her story farther back.

“We all have a story to tell,” she wrote in an essay for the Magnolia Journal. “This book happens to be mine—every chapter a window into who I am, the journey I’m on, and the season I’m in right now. It started with that picture of 6-year-old me. Because that little girl—the one with the missing tooth and messy hair—she knew who she was before the world chimed in. And part of writing my story has been the hope of finding her again.”

Joanna Gaines Faced Childhood Bullying for Her Korean Heritage

One chapter of her life’s story that Gaines unpacked was her childhood insecurities about her Korean heritage. The Magnolia Network founder grew up in Rose Hill, Kansas, the daughter of American-born Jerry and Korean-born Nan.

As she explained to People, as the only Asian family in the community, she faced name-calling and mocking for eating rice at lunch.

“My early memories, a lot of the things that come up are the moments where I switched off and I thought to myself, ‘Oh, I can’t be this,’ or ‘I shouldn’t be this’ or this won’t be approved,” she told the publication. “Like I won’t get the approval, you know, that you want as a kid.”

It was not until she went to New York City for a college internship that she learned to embrace her culture.

“I saw more people that looked like me than ever before,” Gaines told People. “I left really understanding the beauty and uniqueness of Korean culture and for the first time I felt whole, like this is fully who I am and I’m proud of it.”

Writing “The Stories We Tell” caused the “Magnolia Table” star to dismantle many long-held insecurities in hopes of healing, she revealed to the publication.

“The Stories We Tell” will be released on November 8, 2022.

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