I know lying is wrong, but I have been living an enormous lie. My name is not Eric Euell, my real name is Raul Mohammed Garcia. I am an immigrant from Ecuador. My mother wanted the best for me, so she saved up all her money for 14 years. She made me a fake birth certificate, and a fake social security number. She got in contact with a guy who is in charge of smuggling children into the wonderful country of the United States of America. The man's name was Rahib Escobar. He was the owner of a laundromat. He had to talk to my mother for hours about how he was going to get me into the country. It was going to cost my mother all her savings. She thought it was worth it because I was her only son. The trip here was rough and agonizing. It was tough for me to say good-bye to my dearest mother. On the trip there were many obstacles in our way. We had to go through Customs many times. We kept meeting friends of Rahib. We were switching cars constantly. They would not tell me why. They were so nervous they were smoking their cigarettes all the way to their finger tips. They had so much on their minds they weren't even thinking about smoking. I had to run for seven miles through deserts of sand and emptiness. It was horribl., I felt like I was going to fall over. I thought to myself, if I stop I probably will be killed. I had to suck up my pain. My legs were throbbing, I had the biggest cramp over my heart. I was so thirsty. I was seeing things. As I was running I thought I saw a enormous lake. I wanted to give up. I almost stopped. I didn't know what to do. So I ran, I ran till I no longer felt my body. Soon I meet up with Fernando Rodriguez, one of Rahib's friends. He brought me across the Texas border, where I meet up with my mother-to-be. She seemed nice; she already had a son. His name was Michael, who was a year older than me. We get along very well, it doesn't seem like we are not brothers. Now that I am here, I have been holding this inside me for the longest time. This has been my biggest lie. Sometimes I feel like telling everyone. Now the truth is finally coming out. I feel like a big weight has been taken off my shoulders ... 1
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.