December 13, 2011
By jonfila BRONZE, Lemon Grove, California
jonfila BRONZE, Lemon Grove, California
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

In class I have been studying institutional powers and how it affects our everyday life. We have also been studying about the American Dream and how people have tried to achieve it. I would then like to turn my attention to a friend very close to my mother and her pursuit of the American Dream.

Elena was born in Mexico; she arrived to America in her early 20’s. Since then she has always worked hard in achieving prosperity. She married and had a child. As the years went by, she became more and more homesick. She wanted the liberty to visit her family and come back to America, but she couldn’t. One day at my sister’s birthday party, she received a call from her family in Mexico. Her mother had been diagnosed with cancer. She could not stop crying, she wanted to visit her dying mother, but she did not want to leave the life that she had here. Here her son had grown and this is where she met her husband. She could not take them with her, they might not come back. She packed her things and left to Mexico not knowing whether she will come back.

She arrived at Mexico, saw her dying mother, and stayed with her family. After a couple of months, her mother had received treatments and she was safe enough to stay at home. Elena’s mother told her that it was not the doctor’s treatments, but her presence had given her hope to live.

She then decided to come back to America. The only way she could come back was to illegally cross the border. She found someone that could forge a fake citizenship, and crossed as an “American Citizen”. When the officer looked at her documents, he had a certain physiological look on his face that distressed Elena’s feelings. He later said, “You can go”. She got on the trolley but felt as if she was being followed. She was to get off at a stop where she would get picked up and driven home. Sure enough someone was following her; the person was close to her wherever she walked and was on the same trolley. She got off at her designated stop, but still that person was following her. She walked into a store and when she walked out, he was waiting for her. She found the people that she was going to ride with, and the moment she stepped inside their car, ICE patrols stopped her. She was then deported as well as the people that were with her.

She retried again, but failed. She was going to attempt to cross one more time. She met a person that said he could take her, but she had to cross through the Texas border. She boarded on a bus that drove her for 44 hours to the Texas border. On her way there, the bus was stopped by the Mexican Military. They demanded that everyone paid 500 pesos, about 35 dollars, just to continue on with the drive. She then got to the Texas border, and was dropped off near a river. To cross the river; she had to pay a ferry which was 50 pesos, about 3 dollars. She waited for 12 hours on the other side of the river until her escort picked her up. With a group of 23 other people, they cross the border through the desert. Climbing one of the mountains, they were spotted. The escort told everyone to disperse and to meet up at the “light”. It was night time, and there were many lights. He told Elena to follow him and she did. After 4 hours of running and walking, they arrived at the “light”. The escort said that there was a van coming to pick them up and told them to wait. She and some of the others stayed on the mountain in the rain and cold with no food or water for 12 hours. The van was caught by ICE and they were waiting for another van to pick them up. Of the 23 people, only 14 were left. The van arrived, but it was a pickup truck. Everyone had to ride in the back where the trunk had been covered with boards. Elena got to sit in the front for she was the only female. They were dropped off at a house in Dallas, Texas where they could stay, but they were on their own from there.
Elena called a friend that lived nearby and asked if she could get a ride to her house. She agreed, but she could not take her to San Diego. Elena’s friend knew someone who was going to Los Angeles, but lived in Denver, Colorado. The person complained and didn’t want to drive all the way to Dallas then Denver then to LA. After much begging he finally agreed. After a week, she finally arrived to LA where her husband picked her up. She is slowly recovering. She was looking for a better future in America, but was divided between two borders, one her dying mother, the other her future.
This is the kind of story the media nor politicians will never tell you. They will create laws and aspects against illegal immigrants criticizing them that they are leeches to the American Government and that they don’t belong here. Mexico is nothing compared to the United States, there is no freedom of speech; there is only corruption. Immigrants come to America for a better future free from oppression not only to make money and take the jobs from citizens. Elena asks that when you make a decision consider the people that will be affected by it.

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