The Jaime Lucero Mexican Studies Institute Blog
Blog Post by Denise Vivar (Lehman College, 2013 and 2015 Becaria)
I have my green card because my mother is a survivor of domestic violence. The only reason I am on this airplane is because of her suffering, I wouldn’t have this privilege if it wasn’t because of what happen to her. It has been 5 years and my mother will always remember that day. I wanted to console her all these years but only she knew her pain. This green card is now a permanent reminder of her suffering. She left 4 days ago to Mexico. I wanted her to wait for me so we could return together but she had already waited 16 years to see her parents. She is now in Mexico and is waiting for me. My lips are shaking and my hands can’t stand still. I never thought I would return to my native country with the security that I will reenter the U.S. This time my mother is waiting for me in the country we both left. This time my mother is no longer afraid if I will get to the other side safe. She will no longer ask la Virgen de Guadalupe and San Martin Caballero to get me across border safely. My grandparents will also be there. All these 14 years I tried to forget my land, I didn’t want to remember what I was never going to see. Every time my mother asked me “Recuerdas a la señora que vivía en frente de tus abuelitos?” My answer would always be “No.” But deep inside I did remember; it hurt so much that I prefered to pretend that I didn’t remember anything.
Now, I am not sure if I do remember. I am not sure if I want to remember. I fear that nothing will be the same. I fear that la señora won’t be there. As much as this sounds cruel I never thought I would see my abuelitos alive. I thought that I was going to grief them en el Norte. The idea of my mother not seeing her parents alive killed me as well, that I avoided talking to them. Every time my mother asked me “Quieres hablar con tus abuelos o tu tía,” my answer will always be “No.” It is not that I didn’t want to talk to them but it was too painful to hear their voices and know that I was never going to see their face again. I conformed with my mother telling that they were alive and well. I wonder how she handle the talking all these years. Every time they sent her pictures of my the new members of my family I would just glance at the photographs. I was afraid to see how much they looked like me or the family we left behind. I didn’t want to know about them because I thought I was never going to meet them. It was tough for my mom knowing that I didn’t want to know anything about my family in Mexico. I never forgot about them but I avoided everything that had to with them. I loved them too much to never see them again.
I don’t know what to expect, I know nothing about their lives. Will they see me as an intruder. Do they hate me for not staying in contact? Do they think that I am a selfish and forgot where I came from? Or will they embrace me with their warmth like they did when I was little? Will they still call me Any? Will they remember me? Will they hug me like they did when I was little? Will my cousins joke with me? I hope that when the airplane lands that I am ready to answer all these questions. I will hug them and ask them for forgiveness.