They loved me unconditionally, and I was raised along the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains.
Mary didn’t feel she could give her child the life he deserved, so she arranged for an adoption.
Hours after I was born, a middle-aged couple from Fort Collins adopted me.
Inside, the house was bright, and Juana sat on the couch, short and slight and highly attuned to everything. I asked her about her ancestors, and she replied that her grandmother was from , while others were Indigenous and from Michoacán, Mexico.
Her husband, my biological grandfather Trinidad, was from Jalisco, Mexico.
A few months later, on a visit to Colorado, I drove north to meet Antonio for the first time.
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We met at a truck stop between Cheyenne, Wyoming, where he was living, and Fort Collins, Colorado, where I was visiting my parents, on an overcast day in November.
But she and Antonio parted ways, and immigration agents soon came for him.
He was undocumented, so they locked him up in Denver and deported him by bus to Mexico.
When he was 16 years old, Antonio left the stone house in Guanajuato, Mexico, where he was raised, and traveled north by foot, on trains and in vehicles.
He caught trout by hand in mountain streams and ate wild plants and eventually ended up in southeastern Wyoming, where he found work on a dairy farm.