Maverick Pulse

Filed under Features

Living in Two Different Worlds

Am I one or the other?

Nicolas Raymond (CC BY 2.0)

Nicolas Raymond (CC BY 2.0)

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






The first word to have ever left my mouth was in Spanish.

The first words that I ever heard were in Spanish.

Then, English came along. I saw and heard it everywhere, all around me. Through television screens, books, etc.. Yet, this new language seemed foreign. Why was my mom saying “perro,” but my kindergarten teacher saying “dog?” Why did the television shows I watched mostly play in English, yet the radio stations I heard always in Spanish? Why was it that each time I stepped outside of my house, almost everybody only spoke English and no Spanish? What was going on with the world?

I had assumed that all of this confusion was only temporary, but oh, was I wrong. It turned out to become something that would be following me around forever. In fact, it became part of my everyday life.

Growing up was a struggle, and it still is at times.

English is a barrier between my parents and the world, and my sisters and I are their warriors to help fight against it. Whether it be a phone call to schedule a doctor’s appointment or an explanation for a meaning of a word, translating things for my parents became a regularity, and I got tired of it quickly.

The frustration my parents expressed each time I failed them when trying to translate something was heartbreaking. Seeing them struggle having to understand a language that their daughters all knew was hard. English became my enemy, but I could not stop speaking it because it was the only way I could communicate with other people. It broke me.

Being the child of an immigrant is tough, especially when they do not speak the language of your country. You have to handle having to live with different cultures, traditions, and customs — having to hear people critique you for being one way and for being another — for being who you are.

My culture and my ethnicity were not my choice, but they were my blessing. I can speak, read, and write in two languages. I can dance, sing, and celebrate in two cultures. What more do I need?

I, Laura Sanchez Zavala, am a first-generation Mexican-American citizen. I am glad to say that I live in two different worlds, and I couldn’t be more proud.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About the Writer
Laura Sanchez Zavala, Cub Reporter

I enjoy long walks to the fridge at midnight. Also, I like watching scary videos that keep me up at night.

Navigate Left
  • Features

    Teachers Using the ACT Word of the Week: “Syntax”

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Who Cares About Thanksgiving?

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Thanksgiving Break is Around the Corner

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Ants Are Taking Over A-TECH!

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Film Favorites of Fall

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Songs To Remember Me By

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Worst First Dates (Boys Edition)

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Pros and Cons of A-TECH

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    Criminal Justice at the Mob Museum

  • Living in Two Different Worlds

    Features

    We Had A Presentation Today?

Navigate Right