m&ms: Study Abroad


I do not have much recollection on my toddler years. All I know is what I’ve been told. My family is still in this cave-like life. They are people with lots of social parties and acquaintances. But, when the rubber meets the road, they go back to the cave of their dysfunctional relationship, and I am part of it. At the age of 3, my dad is working in the California fields in the outskirts of San Jose. An immigration raid hits his work-site, and is deported to Mexico. My parents decide that the best thing to do is to move back to Nayarit, Mexico to a small town called Mojarras, where my paternal family resided. I started kindergarten when I was 4yrs old. The most memorable moment would have to be the birth of my two younger sisters. Brenda was born in 1980, and Iris was born in 1981. Both of them have my mother’s fair skin complexion. All together, the same issues appeared abroad. My parents were constantly fighting. Father was in his bad habits again. I enjoyed the scenery, and my friends and relatives at school. You see, many of my aunts and uncles are in the education career. My grandma, “Mama Nene”, had 18 children of which 4 died at early preschool age due to vaccination. My grandfather who recently past away, was close to me because he said I looked a lot like Mama Nene and was the mirror image of my daddy. I remember one day, we were helping my mom unhusk the corn. The corn I handed to her had a scorpion. Neither of us noticed the venous creature. It went into her pants and up her leg. The desperation led her to scream and undress in our back patio which was exposed to the main street and a good sized number of neighbors. I remember the people’s faces as my mother revealed her ‘white’ legs and her RED underwear! There was a thing about red undergarments that had a negative stigma attached to it regarding decent women not wearing such provocative colors (even under clothes). I was scared for her, but the doctor knew just what to do in cases of scorpion bites for it was common in crop season. My best times were at school studying. In my last year there, 1983, I was in the first month of 2nd grade, the economy was rough and my mother had had enough of the familial conflicts and my father’s unconventional behavior. The decision was made that we were moving back to America! Thank God! We had our farewell parties. I went to say goodbye to my teachers when I run into the corner of a pointy open window that rips open the upper left side of my head. I remember blood running down my chest as my dad carried my into the the state’s capital hospital. We were to board the train the next day to get to Tijuana, Mexico. I was stitched up and out the next morning. That left a 1 inch ball spot in my head which gets covered daily with the rest of my bangs and hair till this day. The life in Mexico allowed me to study the difference in cultures and economic situations to be able to face what was coming up in the “Land of the Free”.

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Simply Me
    May 08, 2008 @ 11:07:14

    Without a doubt there a many cultural differences when it comes to living here in America. Though many times we don’t realize what a privilege we have to be part of such great country. Of course it has it’s pro’s and it’s con’s, but we as son’s and daughter’s of parent’s who immigrated to America for a better opportunity should take advantage to succeed in life. I love reading stories from your past, for it gives me the insight of why you are the way you are today.

    Reply

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