grateful for it all

Posted by on Jan 13, 2017 in personal | Comments Off on grateful for it all

I’m grateful for every chapter in my story — good and bad, joyful and sad. Reflecting and sharing part of my family’s experience as political refugees — politically exiled Cubans in the early 1960’s — is only part of the complex series of events that comprise my life. I am grateful for it all, and while it is a part of my identity, it certainly isn’t the whole of it.

It seems the trend to label everyone and put them into a nice neat box, once an efficient way to identify demographics, has turned into a much larger issue that probably does more to divide than unite. I’m guilty of it loads of times. Too many, really, to have a clear conscience about criticizing it, but, it’s not the first time I hold conflicting points of view at the same time. I suppose that’s easy to do when you live in two worlds concurrently, even if they are in your head.

In a couple of weeks I’ll be celebrating the 51st anniversary of coming to the United States. I entered through San Antonio, Texas! Needless to say, Texas holds a special place in my heart.

And then, later this year, I will celebrate the 40th anniversary of becoming a naturalized American citizen. It’s like having a second birthday.

I’m grateful for the opportunity my parents found in this great nation. I’m doubly grateful to be a citizen of the United States, the country that took us in and said welcome home.

My story has a happy ending, so to speak. The U.S. is filled with stories like mine, generation after generation. And yet, there’s another truth, of stories cut short or unfulfilled. That is part of the migrant story, too.


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