I was born on March 3, 1986, in Zimapan Hidalgo, Mexico City. All my childhood and part of my youth, I lived in Mexico. I studied until I was 18 years old, studying accounting in a technical school. I had many dreams to further my studies, but my parents did not have the economic resources to continue supporting me. So I decided to work to continue my education. I got a job, but did not earn enough money. Little by little my dream of studying nursing was falling apart. On June 2, 2008, my dad gave us the news we had been granted our resident visa to travel to the United States. At that time my feelings were of joy and sadness, because I had to leave a part of my family, my birthplace, my friends, and all. On September 18, 2008, my first trip to Florida, I arrived at my brother’s home. It had been three years of not seeing him. It was a great joy seeing him again and meeting his family.
When I came to this country, I was filled with illusions to work and further my studies. But over time I realized everything is very different in United States. I started to feel despair. I felt bad when people saw me and treated me differently for being from another country. I wanted to communicate with other people, and I was not able to. It is very difficult to adjust to another life in a new country. I missed my family, my city, and my friends.
Seeing that my dad worked very hard, I thanked God and my dad with all my heart for the opportunity of living in this country. I decided, and promised, to continue to help my family. My family is the most valuable and most important thing in my life, and they want me to fulfill my dreams. On February 3, 2010, I started working in a factory, and they have been very good to me. I am very pleased to share my achievements with my family. This year I want to travel to Mexico to hug my family and say, “I love you!”
Carolina Torquemada is studying in the Clearwater Adult Education/ United Methodist Cooperative Ministries Program at the High Point YMCA. Her teacher is Ms. Roseann Segura.
This is an excerpt from the 2013 Adult Learner Essay Book, Believing That You Can. We are now accepting essays for the 2014 Essay Book. Click here for more information on submitting a story from your student.