Toca Magazine's Kid's-Eye-View project helps adults see the world through the eyes of kids.
- Toca Magazine Guest Writer
Hometown: Oakland, California
What I think the world needs more of: Compassion and humor
My full name is …
Luna — after the moon and to represent my Latina heritage
Lee — to honor my Grandma, my dad’s mom and my donor’s family
Yue-Lian — meaning “moon on shimmering water” in Mandarin
Gillingham — to honor my Grandpa Peter, my mom’s dad
Scott — to represent my Grandma Molly, my mom’s mom
Chung — to represent my dad’s side of the family
And my ethnicities are …
Chinese, Cantonese, Mexican, Scottish, Irish, Argentinian, German, Dutch, Spanish, Catalan
I think it’s really fun to tell people the story about each part of my name; they can see more of my history. Sometimes people don’t know how complicated or deep people’s histories are.
My Grandma, or Abuelita, was born in Mexico and married my Grandpa Bo Song when she was 19. They moved to the U.S. and had my Uncle Bo, Aunt AnnaJade and my dad, who were all born very close to each other. Her dad was from China and her mom was from Mexico and Spain. She lives with us in the first floor of our house and she loves to do a lot of the same things I do, like exercising, gardening, arts and crafts, crochet and cooking.
My Grandpa Bo Song was a “paper son” who immigrated from China with false documents when he was 6. He had to leave his family behind because of a war and was adopted by a family in Florida.
My Nai Nai and Ye Ye (grandma and grandpa in Mandarin) were both born in China and immigrated to Uruguay, then had my donor, Daniel, and my Aunt Sandra in Argentina.
My mom’s mom, Grandma Molly, is a therapist who loves and uses horses in her therapy sessions. She lives in Massachusetts with her two horses, dog and cat. She has been a folk singer for over 60 years and plays the piano, guitar, autoharp and the dulcimer.
I have a lot of family even before you combine all three branches of it, and I love to see them whenever I can.
My family history gives me a better understanding of how different cultures interact and helps connect me to different communities.
- I am proud to be a COLAGER, which means that I am a child of lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) parents. My sperm donor, Duncle (donor/uncle) Daniel, donated his sperm to my parents so they were able to have me. I came up with the nickname Dunkie Doonkie for him when I was little.
- My best friend, Sierra, was 19 days old when I was born and was there when it happened. We have a very unique answer to the question “How did you meet?” or “How long have you been friends?” because our moms have known each other since they were 1 and 2 years old and our grandparents played music together. It’s funny because you would think we would hate each other since we had all that pressure from our families, but we’ve been best friends ever since we were born.
- I have type 1 diabetes, which despite what most people think, has nothing to do with eating too much sugar or not exercising but is sort of a mystery to doctors, and they are researching many different causes for it. Type 1 diabetes is also called juvenile diabetes and is most common to get when you’re younger, even though you can get it as an adult, too.
- I think most people would call me a “smart kid” or think of me as a “teacher’s pet.” And personally, I would describe myself as “smart” or “intelligent” but that doesn’t mean that I love to study or I always get an A+ on my schoolwork—and it especially doesn’t mean that I can’t have fun or I’m not funny. Depending on what it is, I can make studying or homework fun in my own way, and I do have good grades but being “smart” has nothing to do with any of that. In my opinion there are infinite ways to be “smart.” I think that one of the ways that I am “smart” is that I have a unique way of thinking of things and figuring things out.
- I have many interests! I love theatre, singing, dance, crochet, photography, swimming, yoga or mini-exercises, being with my friends, writing, visual art, watching TV, playing on my phone, shopping, planning parties, journaling, playing with my four cats, cooking, making websites and reading.