This morning I woke up already stressed. I don't know what today will bring. Will I be working in the fields at 7 this morning and be in Mexico by 5 this afternoon? Will my son get picked up on his way to school because of a case of mistaken identity. It is not like he can defend himself anyway, he doesn't have an ID, or a Social Security number. These are the things that run through my mind every day. I did not come here to be a criminal yet here I am running and hiding from the law. People that don't know me and my situation both want me here and want me to "go back to where you came from". I just want a good life for my family, my husband and I just want to work. That is literally the most simple thing in life. We want our son to have opportunities we never had. People do not understand it is not as easy as just going to an office building and applying for citizenship or even just a visa. There are thousands of dollars involved, it could take months even years. Our window of opportunity is small to make moves towards a better life. We wish you would understand.
Today I was picked up from my job. I set off red flags by using a social security number that wasn't mine, I bought it and it was supposed to be from a dead guy. I don't know why they never questioned it before. I don't look like a Michael Jackson. I am on my way to a jail in town for holding, I don't even get to call my family. I guess I will surprise them when I get home to Guatemala. This is how fast life can come at you when you are here illegally. I think about those $6000 I used to get here, all the money I borrowed from friends and family in hopes to pay them back is now gone and gone to waste. My family does not know where I am and I have not called my family because according to these agents I have no rights.
Today I went to school, went about my day which consists of keeping to myself. I don't want to let people know about my status. They ask and make jokes about me being illegal but I just go with it and laugh it off. They ask me for a green card and I have a second of panic because I don't know if it is something I am supposed to carry on me so I say "It's at home. Important stuff like that should be secure." This year I will graduate with honors but it will be a lost cause because I can't receive scholarships or even apply for them, much less loans and grants. I know I can be of great service to my community but I can't because of a piece of paper. I will never fulfill my potential because of the life that was handed to me. Life gave me lemons and all I can do is try to sell them... cash only.
Today we went into hiding. We didn't know one of the guys that we were living with was selling drugs. This isn't our fault. We have to live with different families because we don't have great paying jobs, we cannot apply to buy a house or even rent because of background checks. Even though this is a little different to you it feels like we are jews running away from the Gestapo. We scurry like roaches anytime we see anyone white or in uniform approach the house, we do not answer the door for any reason.
Today I sat in a holding cell while my parents were being processed. They didn’t do anything wrong, they are hard workers and never ask for anything from anybody. My parents are in their mid 40’s which means that if they are sent back to El Salvador we will never see the states again. Crossing takes a toll. It is one of the most dangerous, things you can do. If you do not dehydrate in the desert you could be shot by an ICE agent, bit by a snake, or just be killed by the coyote. I don’t want to leave my friends and family I have here. I want to have better opportunities. If we are sent back I will be and die a farmer. It is not like the American farmers where they have tractors and trucks… we have farm animals help us with the labor.
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