This charm belonged to my great-grandma, Leah Lopin, my middle namesake. I met her a handful of times before she died in the 90’s, and I mostly remember necklaces and laughter and white teeth. This charm lives next to my perfume, and yesterday I stopped and looked it and remembered: she was the first kid to be born in America. Her Jewish parents fled Russia in the early 1900’s to escape religious persecution by the Czar, and by persecution I definitely mean senseless murder. ALL OF THIS TO SAY, they were welcomed, here. They started a life, here. And so I now have a life, here. Let this never be lost on me, and let it inform and shape my view and activism for those trying to enter from Honduras and El Salvador and Guatemala who only want THE EXACT SAME THING.