Just thinking about this as a title cracks me up because i don't know about you but for me it quickly takes me to the Eddie Murphy which I thought was hysterical! LOL ( literally laughing out loud right now! )
Anyway, this for me was quite scary in the beginning. Born in Honduras, Central America and living a very suburban village life as an infant and toddler; leaving to America not knowing a peep of english and not knowing how different my every day life would be shook me to my core.
I remember not understanding what an apartment was and why we had to go up five flights of stairs to get into a space that felt like a square box. My mornings of sitting with my grandpa on our tiny porch were over along with warm climate all year around. Seriously did not enjoy the whole boots and hat and coat routine when it got cold!
My first day at day care I cried the entire time because I just did not understand a word anyone was saying. I could only speak Spanish at the age of five and I had been raised up until that point by my grandparents and aunt and uncle. Therefore to me , this woman who called herself my mother was a stranger who did not even know how to console me. I just wanted to go back!!
I have an older brother, Rene who also came to New York but he was older than so from my younger point of view he seemed to be settling in ok. In hindsight though I am sure there was some transition hurdles that he had to overcome.
Needless to say I hung in there ( mostly because I had no choice ) and learned the ways of living in the city and speaking english , quite well might I add. I love to read and learn and all throughout elementary school, high school and even in college, I somehow ended up in honor classes. Go figure!!
That is a very core value that I still live by today by the way. Just because I feel afraid or confused about the how or a new challenge I will not allow that to stop me from learning and growing. I see my gifts more clearly now as I continue to share my stories.
Although I do have repressed memories and lapses of time that I do not recall... the ones that are clear are the pillow fights we would have where we all just laughed. Cooking in the kitchen with my dad ( I still love to cook today! ) observing my brothers mistakes and thinking " Nope, don't wanna go that route , think I will create my own way " and watching my mom work her ass off to get her brother/sister and my grandparents to New York as well. Many times did we stand on long lines at the Immigration Office as my mom relentlessly applied time and time again for their Visa. Took about 6-8 years but she never gave up.
I oftentimes thought of myself as different, the black sheep of the family as people say but as I got older and looked inward I began to see that the past need not define me but rather I get to choose the story about how it unfolded. I am grateful for not only the laughs but the growing pains because here I am loud and proud; confident and leading my own path alongside my husband who supports me endlessly.
From my grateful heart to yours!