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Adoptee spotlight: Lili

Guangdong, China --> Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Hi, my name is Lili. I am 21 years old and was born in Guangdong: the Zhangjiang area in between Maoming. When I was about a year old, I was adopted alongside seven other girls from my orphanage. I was raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.


My experience growing up was pretty chill. I was raised in an area that was majority white, and my high school and my friends were majority white. Navigating my adoption story and heritage came when my family went on a heritage trip back to China. This involved going back to the place where I was found and the orphanage I grew up in for the first year of my life.

"Navigating my adoption story and heritage came when my family went on a heritage trip back to China."

I was in the middle of my sophomore year in high school when I started thinking about studying abroad. So, I applied to go abroad for a month to Shanghai, which really was something that had an influence on me. Coming back, I registered to take Mandarin at my local university during my senior year of high school, and, from there, I decided to minor in Chinese as one of my disciplines in college.


Right now, I’m finishing up my last semester at school, and my exposure to Asian culture is being supported by my school's Vietnamese Student Association. I didn’t really have that growing up; my exposure to Asian culture really came through two of my mom’s colleagues and their children which was the only way I was able to experience holidays, the familiar interactions and the language.

 

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[Description: On a pink and peach colored background, there's a large photo of Lili with a sunset behind her. To the right is a photo of Lili as a small child in a kiddie pool. Large text says "Lili."]

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