Sometimes I feel like a fake salvadoreña

I grew up in Los Angeles after my mother took me there from El Salvador on July 9, 1989. At that time there weren’t as many Salvadorans as there are now, and one of the first places I lived in was Compton. From what my mother told me, her plan was for us to be there for two years so she could learn English and how to use computers. We were extremely fortunate to have obtained tourist visas, meaning we skipped crossing Guatemala and Mexico to get to the US.

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Stuff you need to know before moving to Buenos Aires

Buenos Aires is a great city and most of my immigrant and expat friends here stayed far longer than they planned (I know how that feels!). Moving to another country is no joke, and any immigrant would tell you so. The thing is, many who move to Buenos Aires consider themselves expats, and this denotes a sense of privilege immigrants and migrants don’t have.

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The Story of Jenny

As a kid my mother tried not to let me dwell on my race or immigration status. That I’d go to college and get a job that would pay decently was never in question. When people wanted to talk to her about miserable it could be to live in the United States without papers, she also tried to focus on the awkwardness of having less than perfect English.

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The Shoebox

When I was a kid I would watch my relatives go to El Salvador and leave my mother and I behind. She and I would write letters to our family and my aunt and cousin would take them to the rest of our family. Usually I didn’t know what to say. In many cases I only knew who I was addressing through my mother’s stories because I couldn’t remember the sound of anyone’s voice. I couldn’t tell my relatives apart in pictures without my mother’s help.

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