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Families are so different. When we were talking about them in school, Colby said, “It’s easier to say who I’m NOT related to in Wolfgang” because his family is big and they’ve lived here forever. Mrs. O., on the other hand, has only one cousin left, and he’s in Australia! Tofu and I are like her family now. No wonder she bakes us so many cookies. My own family is a bit messy. Dad and Richard live in Ottenbury with my darling Beatrice and sometimes me. Mom and I live here in Wolfgang with Tofu. My birth mom lives in China with maybe another family. Not everything has to be neat and tidy all the time. Messy can be good.

When I was littleColby’s little sister Celia says she can remember when she was born. Can that really be true? I can’t even remember when Mom and Dad came to China to get me, and I was already walking by then. Mom tells me about it, whenever I ask. She even made a special book for me about the trip. Secretly, I wish I could remember when I was really really little. That way, I could remember my birth mom’s face. I like to know stuff, especially if it’s about ME.

What my father smells like makes me happy!

My dad is a good hugger. I love hugging him. He smells like old books, garlic, clean laundry, and sometimes toothpaste. Richard mostly smells like cologne, even from across the room. It makes my nose tingle.

My mom smells good, too – mostly like oil paint. A long time ago, I know I smelled my birth mom. Mom says she must have held me very close, in order to be brave enough to let me go. Maybe she smelled like good Chinese things, like dumplings. I love those.

I have no clue what my Chinese birth father smells like. There are some things you can never know and there are some things you can’t even imagine. This makes me mad and scared sometimes, but it’s okay. I can always hug my daddy dad, and he always hugs me back!!!!!

Some Old Games Never Get Corny

I have a birth mom but I don’t know her. She’s like a flower whose seed blew away in the wind, and it grew. That seed is me. But my Mommy Mom, she’s like the sun and the rain. That’s what we used to play, when I was little. And it’s true. Without her, I really wouldn’t be me, even though she’s not my birth mom. It’s confusing but it isn’t. My birth mom is probably too far away for me to ever know. But it’s okay. I have my MOM, right here. And she has me.

My name is India McAllister and these are my true, random, sort of secret thoughts.

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