I was born in the small town of San Miguel, Jalisco in Mexico, and moved to the United States when I was six. As a kid I never knew there was any place better than the small town I lived in. When I moved to the United States it showed me that the world was a bigger place than I had ever thought, and that the United States is truly the greatest place to live ever.
A few years back, when I was in the seventh grade, my family decided it was time to visit the place we were all born in. Man was that a mistake, that summer was the most boring, sad summer I have spent in my life as of yet. Upon arriving into my town I saw that it was exactly what I remember, small streets with small people walking around everywhere and it looked like the exact place I had left many years before. However, all the fun and excitement left with me and there was no sight of it in town while I was around. As it turned out the reason for visiting was that my grandmother, bless her soul, was incredibly ill. She at the time was suffering from alzheimers and dementia and my dad felt this was going to be the last summer we would ever see her again, sadly he was correct.
Throughout the month that was spent there in that miserable little town my dad spent it with his mother in her last few months on this earth. My mother too grief stricken by sitting around a dying woman, instead visited her mother. That left me alone all day to find something to do. Normally, that is not a problem and it should not have been as I had more than enough cousins along on the trip to keep me sane. I however was completely wrong on the matter. I wanted to go hang out outside and go talk to girls or something of the sort. However, my cousins' only past times were sitting watching soccer or eating and playing soccer. This left me to either try to join in on their sport extravaganzas or go out by myself to a town where the only people who knew me were in their 50s and only remembered me as a baby. So, instead i spent a majority of the time outside by myself just thinking. I did more growing up that summer then I ever have.
During those two months the idea of death and life being frail suddenly became very real to me, with the sadness my grandmother brought me. It helped me see that my parents sacrificed their lives to help make mine better. They absolutely adored the small town, but moved to the United States only to ensure my life was better, whether that was through education or just the quality of life. Sometimes you have to give something up to get something you really want, through sacrifice true bliss is found. While I had a boring summer by most accounts I am thankful for visiting because it helped me grow as a man. Sometimes, silence is all that is needed to truly understand.
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