I’m trying to help raise my two little sisters while my mom spends around half her time at work. Valerie is 11, and Vianey is nine. I hadn’t realized how absent my parents need to be to provide until consistently hearing my sisters ask, “When are they getting back from work?” Then when they get back, they’re in real need of a nap, and my sisters need to wait to bond with them. This set up is pretty common, and a lot more kids don’t have anyone.
As Hispanic Heritage Month continues to run until October 15th, I’m digitally digging through archives to find contributions from the Hispanic/Latinx community to U.S. history. As of now, I’ve learned a Mexican created the first color TV system, Cuba funded the end of the American Revolution, and, not only did Hispanic/Latinx immigrants fight in WWI, “temporary” Mexican agricultural workers feed the country.
Yet, I am struggling.
My sister who is four years younger than me is beginning college in the fall. In the next week or so, she’s also completely moving out of my parents’ house…before me. Part of me thought, she’s way too young, moving way too quickly, and I have to talk some sense into her. But now I know she’s been pushed a bit ahead since as far back as I can remember, and I won’t suddenly try to stop her now.
After landing a job as a staff writer at the local newspaper, in my mother’s eyes, I’ve “made it” because I work for people’s stories. I’ve felt guilty for thinking I’m not quite there yet because this is just the beginning. But for my mother, to finally have me working at a desk after her long hours at the factory hog farm while numbing the pain of her hand deformity with medication to pay off my college out-of-pocket, I’ve definitely made it.