Memoirs of a Depressed Hispanic “Adult”

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic
Hey guys, this is my first time trying this out. I wrote a little bit about my childhood and will continue to do so. There are many stories to tell, and I think by writing it out, I can help myself. Names have and will be changed to keep the privacy of this whole thing but all other events are true. I hope you enjoy them!

Submitted: May 21, 2016

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Submitted: May 21, 2016

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It all started with heavy responsibilities and a pressure of doing excellent in school to take your parents out of poverty. Deep inside I knew that growing up was dangerous but it was glamorized all over and all I could think of was how successful I was going to be once I graduated high school. Growing up in a large Hispanic and unprivileged home made me realize that all I wanted was to have money and power to change my current situation. I sometimes dreamed about a secret uncle who suddenly died of a heart attack and left us with a huge inheritance. You know like in the movies. When that wasn’t realistic enough, I wished some sort of pandemic struck the world so we didn’t have to worry about money and things but more about survival and food. Ideas like these popped in my head every so often that I thought I was going crazy.

 Now you’re probably thinking, what is this all about? Well, it’s pretty much about everything a young adult in her 20’s with a ton of debt and school ahead of her thinks and has been through. It just seems all too disappointing and miserable, life I mean. I grew up with two parents who never completed high school but did enjoy life. I have eight brothers and sisters and one step-sister who I have never seen but have talked through social media. I remember living with relatives to having a one bedroom sort of apartment enough for six. Then our family grew even more so my parents went from one shit hole to another. When your father is illegal and your mother doesn’t work, little money only gets you so far. Now I know what you are thinking, people have it harder and I should be grateful. I was grateful for shelter and food, but I just wondered, what if they completed their education, they would’ve been better off. My mother had to give away two of her own kids to a relative and a family friend for reasons I dare not ask. We couldn’t talk to them on a regular basis and our bond wasn’t the same. When I tell you that growing up was tough, I mean it. My mother has battled depression throughout her life and with a mentality that she didn’t need medication, made it that much tougher. She would constantly joke about wanting to kill herself or cut her arms. “I’m just being funny”, she would say. At times I believed her, but once I saw about six prescription bottles all filled up in our house, I knew it was much more serious. Those bottles where never empty, like I said she thought depression was nothing more but a weakness and having little to no money at all, she claimed that was the only thing that was making her miserable. Like I said before, we lived in an apartment big enough for two (while six people lived there) and a trailer home when our family got bigger. I remember going to school with my brother since it was elementary and middle school in one. During my time in that school, I began to acknowledge the fact that I was smarter than I though and my teachers saw that. I was considered for the gifted and talented program but then we had to move. The next big palace we moved to was in the projects. We were a little better with money but with seven people and a newborn living in one place, we had to improvise. We had four rooms and two bathrooms, it was two stories and pretty big compared to the places we’ve lived in. I don’t recall the rent amount in that apartment, but it was in what my mother liked to call it, the “ghetto” so it must’ve been pretty cheap. I made friends with the kids around us and there was a playground we would always hang out in. I had two best friends, Clara and Ileana. We were always together and we had so many adventures. Clara was a year older than us so during school, we didn’t hang out as much but once we got home, it was all fun and games. Her sisters where about the same age as mine so it was pretty much a perfect fit. There was  also this lady who used to sell Mexican candies across from where we lived so our “allowance” almost all the time went there.

During this happy childhood of mine, my dad cheated on my mother and was caught by the police for being illegal or smoking weed. One or the other, I can’t recall, he left us for quite some time. I was still pretty young and naïve to know what he had done but I knew it was bad. He cheated with a lady from the corner store where we would always go, get what we needed and paid later. It was pretty common back in the day since most of us living in those apartments where on welfare and used our money for other things. Anyways, there was this tree that was right behind the corner store. It was big enough to look into the store and the branches were short enough to let us climb onto it. It was thick and filled with leaves from the outside so people couldn’t see us, but we could see them. It was once our hangout spot. We used it for castles, forts, hide and seek and clubs. One night, while we were playing hide and seek with the rest of the project kids, I decided to hide in the tree. Everyone knew about the tree so it was pretty dumb for someone to hide there so no one ever did and no one ever checked. I, on the other hand was smart enough to use it. Right when I was climbing up, I heard, “listos o no, ahi voy”.* I quickly climbed up that wall and held on for dear life. I looked out through the branches and leaves and saw my dad going into the store and started talking to the lady who worked there. Right next to that store was a strip club that was often filled with big, nasty and raunchy looking men so I first thought it was one of them buying unnecessary things before hitting up the club. I had to look twice and really concentrate because I didn’t want to accept that it was my dad flirting with that same lady. What do you do at this point? Do you tell your mom and cause a big fight, do you keep it to yourself and let it consume you for the rest of your life, or do you forget it and move on like nothing happened? What is an 11 year old supposed to do when all her life she thought that her mother and father were supposed to be in love with each other and not someone else. I, on the other hand forgot about it and let myself get caught by the little boy who was playing the “seek” part of the game. When that was over and days had passed, I saw my father in the back of a police car. 


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