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Maria Andres

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Description

This story is about Maria Andres, a DACA recipient whose mother brought her to the United States from Mexico when she was young. Life was difficult for Maria and her mother as they adjusted to the culture and strove to make a living. Today, Maria is worried about her precarious political position and works to maintain her Mexican culture.

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0:03:46

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. Please contact Immigration History Research Center staff for permissions not covered by this Creative Commons license.

Transcription

The United States of America, a country created with the hands of immigrants. Immigrants have been in our history from the very beginning, no matter what people have said. My family friend, Maria has been in the US since she was 7, hoping for the American Dream this country has promised various immigrants.

Maria born in Mexico in the State Michocan. The pueblo that she lived in was Zitacuaro. When Maria was young, her mom left to the United States to search for a better future. Soon after, she came back and took Maria and her older brother to have a better opportunity for herself and her kids. Maria not knowing nothing but her pueblo was terrified and disappointed that she had to leave her grandma, who she was very fond of. Before crossing the border, her mother gave her a gold necklace with a little angel on it and told her that this angel will protect her throughout her journey. Once she was in America, she had never felt so uncomfortable and scared as she was that day. The environment was completely different. There were huge buildings, large paved roads, and other things she has never seen before. Living in Mexico was completely different than it is here in the US. The city was so huge, while in Mexico the town was small where everyone knew everyone. Here Maria came and knew no one, but luckily her mom would take her to places that were bilingual and had various Spanish speaking people to talk to. Her mom also put her in a bilingual school, which was Maria’s first time seeing people of another ethnicity than her own. It was a change for her, but though she struggled to get comfortable with all the changes in her society, she grew to love her area and the people around her.

One thing that has kept her connected to Mexico is the food. California being such a diverse state has helped Maria keep to her roots. She drives up to Fruitvale and eats tacos, enchiladas, or some raspados. Her mom luckily, also makes her favorite Mexican food, which is some enchiladas and makes Maria extremely happy knowing that her roots are still with her and her family.

With the chaos in the society that has been currently happening, many immigrants are fearing for their life here in the states. Maria having her family here, she fears that one day something might happen. Even though she lives in California, a very liberal state with laws that protect immigrants to an extent, you never know what can happen nowadays. Luckily Maria took the opportunity to apply and receive DACA. And attends college to pursue a great career and help her family in the future, as her family has always helped her before. Though she is covered with DACA, there will always be that fear of something happening.

As she explains the hardship of today’s society, Maria tells me how grateful she is about being here in the US. There are a lot more opportunities to grow higher and live better here in the US than back in Mexico. She does miss her hometown and her grandma the most, but her life is here now. Maria wants people to know that immigrants aren’t here to take people’s jobs and to cause chaos in this country but is here to pursue a better future.