Looking Back and Fighting Forward.

Today marks our 2nd anniversary as immigrants in the US. Yes, TWO full years experiencing the beauty, diversity and kindness, the colors and architecture, the always unpredictable weather and the hurried ways.

I was born in the Venezuelan Caribbean almost 34 years ago and growing up surrounded by the warmest humans and unbelievably beautiful landscapes made me deeply Venezuelan, and that my friends, it is not removed so easy... but, I am a wanderer by nature, I adapted and have become resilient. I’m an immigrant in these days in this country. And yes, I've felt the cold shoulders and the micro-aggressions but I've also felt the warmth and kindness of countless incredible humans, because I am a firm believer that in the end of the day, the good ones are more, ALWAYS!

Today, we've been away from home for two whole years absorbing new ways, making new friends and discovering… and as I said before, despite considering myself very Venezuelan, we are facing the challenge of raising American girls without being born in the United States, mainly because they chose it and they feel it in their hearts... and for me is a kind of a bittersweet feeling but we give them the space to be, whatever they feel like being, and I'm ok with that!

SEGUIMOS (Spanish for move forward).

We continue, we move forward and I dream with that moment of going back home, but today I am here because it is here where I want to be. Because the present back home was uncertain and the feeling of normality was abnormal and the future… the future is already here and for those who know how to live the present and prepare for it.

I am immensely grateful to live in this wonderful city. Chicago has been my teacher and its lessons have changed me. Its challenges have morphed into opportunities. Its authenticity has chastened my sense of wonder and entitlement. Living far from my native country has lifted up and widened out my perspective. As an immigrant, I have become more a global citizen than a resident of a single place.

So, I hope that after a fair amount of wandering, at the end of my days, I have the opportunity to see myself covered in sand and with gray hair back where this life of mine started: El Caribe! learning to breathe, to move on, to forget and forgive, to celebrate and to remember because it is there where I want to spend the end of my days, in my beloved Caribe! Here a few pics so you can see for yourself that I’m not exaggerating! So please, cross your fingers with me so that one day I can receive you in Venezuela and toast (many, many times)

To my dear American friends: I couldn’t feel prouder of this wonderful society stopping the madness of these days. I love you with all my heart, and I will always have your back! Don’t let the present take away your generosity and solidarity, or your freedom to make decisions, or your desire to continue dreaming of a better tomorrow, because is with that, we are going to build a better future for our kids (here in the US, in Venezuela or wherever we are).

I give thanks, because in this crazy ride I discovered unintentionally that I’m finally happy with who I am, where I am and how I got here.

PersonalAlicia Mayorca