Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Questions about Immigrating

If all my Facebook page was updated with everything that happened in my life, it would be telling me now that 20 years ago, we were getting ready to move to the USA. It would remind me of the memories of preparing to leave our entire lives behind, while still being partially in denial that it was going to happen. 

In August, it will be 20 years that we have lived in the USA, and in August 20th, it will be exactly 20 years that we arrived in Pennsylvania. 

A few random facts, because some have asked: 

Where in Mexico Am I From? Yuriria Guanajuato, in the center of the country, about 5 hours north east from Mexico City. Our region of the state specializes on manufacturing clothing, and textiles. My town has a small industry in fishing and farming. 



Do I still have family in Mexico ? Yes, my aunts, uncles and cousins live there. And, about 60% of my cousins live there. Other cousins are spread out through the USA, mainly in Chicago IL. My siblings all live in Chester country PA, and my parents travel back and forth through the year. 


My grandpa, Mom and Granma. I don't know who took the picture, but my grandma got totally cut out of it.


Why did I come to the USA? That is a very complicated answer. We were all underage, and didn't have a choice, but to follow our parents. My mom says that she wanted us to learn English and see other parts of the world. But now, as I am older, I understand that she wanted my father to see us grow up and be a father figure for us. He had lived in PA for most of my life when we came here. He had a job in Mexico, but did not make enough to do all the things he wanted to do ( That is also vague, but it's the best that I can say without writing a novel). 

Were we poor in Mexico? I have never been asked this question on the blog, but over the years, many other people have asked. No, we were not poor. My mom worked really hard to support all of us. We owned a house, we had furniture, rooms for each of us, clothes, food and at some early point in our lives, we had a nanny. We were not rich, but we knew there would always be a meal at the table. 

Our house in Mexico. Aren't we the cutest?

Was it scary  to come to the USA? Yes, it was scary! I remember one of the scariest things on the trip here, was this super tall older white man, with blonde hair and blue eyes who kept giving us dirty looks in the bus. He never said anything ( he might have, we didn't speak English ) to our faces, but he was scary! Sitting in a classroom where I could understand 2 words out of the entire class was scary. I have many other things that were frightening that I block off my brain. 

What would I have done, if I hadn't moved here? I was in top of my class in middle school, my plan had been to go to technical school to get my high school diploma, then study chemistry. I had a brain for math and science, and had the grades to get scholarships. That was at least my plan. 

My middle school Graduation
I would not change a single thing that has happened in the last 20 years, it has been an amazing experience to come to this country and learn the language, the culture, live the life style and be part of this community. I used to imagine what my life would have been like if I had stayed, but those thought stoped when my son was born. My life is meant to be here. 


What was your strong subject in High school or Middle school?
Did you ever have a nanny?
What is one thing your parents didn't give you an option for?
Do you have any other questions for me?

8 comments:

  1. I LOVE THIS! I'm so glad you wrote this post! I think you're at the top of my list of people who I'd love to sit down and talk with in real life. You are such a full, and fascinating person.

    We had a lot of money when I was a kid but then when my dad got sober, he quit his job and we lived much more modestly as he worked on getting his life together. We had a cleaning lady that was always around when we had money. She wasn't a nanny, but she did everything except take care of me.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Suzy!! We would have such an amazing long talk!! Maybe it can happen in this lifetime!

      Wow!! that is such an interesting story, I would have thought that because he stopped drinking, the money situation would have gotten better.

      Delete
  2. I am always interested on how people came to live where they do. Why did your dad choose PA to work in? It just seems like such a random choice seeing as there are other states closer to Mexico. I am glad you are here though! I am always super impressed with how you (and people in general) can pick up another language so fluently. I can't imagine trying to learn ALL the words in another language. When we went to Mexico I knew a few phrases. Enough to make conversation with the cab drivers...lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. When I asked my dad why he picked PA instead of say.. Florida.. he said that mushrooms are easier to pick than oranges. But I think that he came here because his brothers were already living here. For a while he considered Chicago, but didn't want to live in a big city.


      I am so impressed that you knew enough to communicate with the cab drivers! You must have practiced a lot!

      Delete
  3. Thanks for telling us about this part of your life! I know America is a fuller, richer place thanks to all the brave people who come here. I can't imagine how scary it was. Were you excited to be with your dad or did the fear overshadow?

    I didn't have a strong subject in school. I was always reading but only the books I wanted to read. I can't remember a single assigned book that I liked. No we never had a nanny or a cleaning woman. My m9m stayed home with us and my dad worked for the railroad. We were not rich at all but it was a differentg time. We were always happy!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!!

      I bet those reading days were amazing! just reading, not having to worry about anything else but the books!

      That is the best life, when you can look back and say we were always happy!!

      Delete
  4. Thanks for sharing Ana! I loved reading this story. I can't imagine what it must have been like to move to a new country where you didn't know the language. I get anxious traveling to other countries even though I know they will likely have signs around in both their native language and english for the most important things!

    I was terrible at math. I was a straight A honor student all my life except for math. One year my teacher had to have a meeting with my mom because I had a D in Algebra II. I pulled that together into a C by the end of the semester but I also think maybe the teacher padded my grade a little bit knowing that I tried my hardest. I remember at the end of the year he told me, "don't worry, when you get into college just major in something that doesn't require you to know algebra. You're going to be fine." LOL But seriously that was good advice for me! haha

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am glad to see that you did not go on to become an accountant!! I am glad your teacher helped you out! What did you study ?

      Thank you!

      Delete