I am not sure where to start with this. I guess I will just go with the flow. This story is from my own life and experiences.
Being born as a first-generation American carries both rewards and struggles when it comes to our experiences. I have never been more torn apart about my identity but as the years go by I’ve come to accept that I must create this unique space for myself where I can find a perfect balance of my two worlds.
My life has not always been easy. I’ve struggled, suffered, lost, and seldom gained. In the process, there are a few people closest to me that I am certainly grateful for along my journey.
No one is stronger than my wife. The thoughts and realities she battles daily remind me of this. Her smiles convince me of it. Her love reassures me.
I could never explain to her how much love I have for her. For she is my oldest daughter out of three girls and her big brother. For I have no favorites but it is HER that I feel jealous and envious of the people around her...
Even though my knuckles and nails are bruised, scuffed and broken thanks to the boxes of Christmas decorations that have dragged me on a right old merry dance down the garden path jingling all the way, my kids still grin with eagle-eyed anticipation and it is impossible to ignore the building excitement on their faces.
Thank you for giving me the gift of life! If it wasn't for you loving me, protecting me and taking care of me those nine months I was inside your womb I wouldn't be here. Thank you for kissing all my cuts, scrapes and bruises. Thank you for picking me up everytime I fell down and telling me to try it again. Thank you for your warm hugs and gentle touch. Thank you for always making my favorite dessert, cheesecake, just because you wanted to see that big smile on my face. Thank you for wrestling around, playing tag and whatever other silly game my sister and I were playing. Thank you for helping me be the child that you would have loved to watch grow up and helping me be the woman that I know you would be proud of today. Most importantly that you for being my mother.
I am not sure who really could relate to this but I do want to share my store. When I was 17 years old I graduated high school and got pregnant, I really did not have time to figure out what I wanted in life or who I was going to become. At 18 I gave had my baby, right there I became mom, I did not think anything else about it. I had it in my mind that I was going to be the best mom even though I was young, I would do anything for my baby.
Chapter 1: The beginning
It had been bittersweet leaving my family behind. We were about to go to America and not just to America but to New York. I had heard so many stories about America. It was the land of the free and the home of the brave. I could have the chance to become anyone I dreamed of becoming. As the taxi approached the airport the nervousness started to settle into my stomach as if I was about to throw up. I looked up at my mum. In my eyes she was the true definition of beauty and brains. Long curly hair that perfectly shaped her beautiful milk chocolate skin, slim body that definitely had snapped back after she had birthed me. She had this exotic look to her as if she was mixed with all types of ethnicity.My mother was not affectionate at all. I never understood why but in my eyes she was a Queen. A Queen that unfortunately didn’t know her worth. Instead of voicing my nervousness, I continued to look out the window of the taxi and didn’t even realize the taxi had came to a halt. We were going to America so my mother could be with her boyfriend. It was a drastic and very hard decision for her. For her to pack us up from all we have know our lives and follow a man she deep down inside new didn’t even deserve her on her worst day.As we walked through the airport, fear started to dawn on me. What if he kicks us out? What if he beat her like he did so many times before? I started to panic.” This was not a good idea” I thought frantically. “Mom, do we really have to move to America. What about Ma and Pa and all our family” I exclaimed. My eyes started to brim over with tears. My eyesight started to get so blurry.I didn’t even notice the huge suitcase they just put on top of my Porcelain doll, that my mother had just placed on the conveyor belt. I looked at my mum’s face as she told be to “be quiet and to hurry up”. I could see she was bothered but i guess the love she had for her boyfriend, gave her the motivation she needed to walk through the last metal dector. As we gathered our personal belongings, I noticed my porcelain doll coming through. I loved Sarah so much. My mom had bought her and had her painted to look just like me. As I picked her up and went to hug her, I noticed a huge crack from the top of her hair to her left ear. “Mom they broke Sarah!” I screamed. At this age, to me Sarah was pretty much dead. Her face was mutilated by the stupid security who threw a suitcase on her face. My mother looked at me and told me blankly to put her in the trash next to the x-ray machine.”But Mum!” I cried. “You can’t take that broken glass on the plane” she replied. I looked at her in disbelief. I slowly put Sarah in the trash as tears overflowed on my face. “ Sorry little girl” said a big heavy set bald security officer as he smiled and shrugged his shoulders. I looked at him through my tears and said “ok” almost so quiet that if the words hadn’t came out of my mouth, I wouldn’t even of heard it. We walked briskly to the plane as I cried over the pain of losing my favorite toy ever. “Sit”, my mum said abruptly as she interrupted my memories of when I first received Sarah. I sat down in the middle seat and looked out the window at the Tarmac. The plane started to slowly take off. As we climbed higher and higher into the sky. I looked down at my home, my country.I prayed for a safe arrival and that maybe just maybe my mum could find me another Sarah. Little did I know the beginning of the my life’s destruction was but only 22 hours away.
When I met their dad while we both were in college back in 1997, my heart was filled with hope, thankfulness and lofty dreams and goals for a picture perfect marriage to a man I had come to eventually love very deeply. All of those dreams were infinitely shattered chasing better jobs, better pay, a better life for those three and I will tell you how if you just keep reading.
When the phone rang at 9:30, I grabbed the phone thinking it late for a call but didn’t panic until the name appeared, my dad’s caretaker/girlfriend. My stomach gurgled, creating a shallow craving, not from hunger but for information of what had occurred.
Black. That’s what the color of the walls should be. Black like her hair. Or maybe just as black as the color of her skin. Once again, her family moved. So once again, she has a brand new, all white, bedroom. A bedroom where she will come home from school and leave her homework blank on the edge of her desk. A bedroom that she will stay in and never leave, not even for meals. A bedroom where she is not allowed to lock her door because she “don’t pay no god damn bills in this house.”