This is the love of my life. And we’re getting married next year. I’m so excited.
The National Medal for Museum and Library service is the nation’s highest honor given to museums or libraries for service to the community. This year there were two winners in Iowa. Both the Marshalltown Public Library and the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library in Cedar Rapids have connected with their communities in some innovative ways.
Minute 30-ish, thats me! So exciting and humbling to be invited to be a part of the Talk of Iowa, Iowa Public Radio talk show, this morning.
I just came across music I used to listen to in 7th and 8th grade. Its so disgusting, but Im kind of enjoying it. Shhh.
I just met Jose Antonio Vargas. One of my biggest inspirations. I am still in awe—but unfortunately I’ve to return to reality and do my homework.
There were just so many things that he mentioned that I fell in love with, perhaps because they touched on so many personal issues. Mixed status families. I guess I had never realized that I belonged to a mixed status family. About community. About opportunity and dreams. This is what America is about. This is what I am about. This is how I define American, with my story, my dreams, and my family. We are America.
Aqui se respira lucha.
I hate myself, more than I ever let on.
I’m burned out at 22.
I lived too fast and I loved too much and I’ll die too young,
but I chose this cup that I drank from.
Knew what I was getting into.
But I couldn’t let out what I had to keep in.
I’m ashamed of myself and unspeakable sins, that I’ve committed and:
I’ve made mistakes, but I’ll find my way. There’s no explanation for, the things I’ve failed at before. They can’t hold my hand. It just hurts to be a man, through the tortures of the damned.
If I only had an axe, I’d sever the ties I’ve made with the world. Maybe I can be a stranger, in a strange place. If I start now, maybe I can be saved. If I only had a mask, I’d cover these bleeding eyes. They’re bloodshot now but they’ll be black by dawn. If I wake up now,
I can be pure again.
Look at me now, I’m on the tracks with my back towards the last train leaving town.
My family and I are still living the results of the broken immigration system and its events from 2006. My uncle was detained and deported as product of the meatpacking plant raid that took place in Marshalltown, IA. This was a very difficult time for our family, as we have always been close. My uncles absence left a strong impact on my cousins who was then 2, who stopped talking and needed to regularly attend therapy. Within a year of my uncle’s departure, immigration proceedings continued with my aunt. She was also eventually deported regardless of having two citizen children and having living and worked in this country for over 15 years. My cousins were age 2 and 4 at the beginning of these events and were 4 and 6 by the time their mother was deported. They moved in with my family, where we cared for them, until finally deciding that they needed to be with their parents, and were reunited with their parents in Mexico in 2009. My cousin who is now 9, notices the geographical, educational, and social differences. He feels alienated as he had never even visited the country. He dislikes his school and his environment. He regularly asks me why he has to be there, and if he could come back. As a citizens of the United States, it is truly a shame that both of these children are being denied their rights and benefits to have brighter future as a result of our outdated and broken immigration laws.
I visited them over my winter break, and when I was talking to my cousin about the differences he noted he said “Here, there are not a lot of toys, it’s poor here and there it’s rich, even if you’re poor. There’s no jobs, we don’t have a car, and everything is far… just that.” When I asked him if he would like to return one day he said, ” I want my mom to go over there…but she can’t…” Today, February 6th, is his birthday. His second birthday in Mexico and he is now 10.
Yesterday was his 11th birthday. Third birthday in Mexico….I want them back.