Posts Tagged ‘Espie’

I’ve started writing a biweekly column for The Messenger, a free guide to church-related programs and events in El Paso . My column is called Hope of the Borderland, and I’m publishing faith-based stories from people who live in the El Paso/Juarez borderland region. Here is a story from my friend Espie:

Espie’s Story – By Esperanza Valadez as told to Becky Cerling Powers

 When I first started reading verses from the Bible, my family had 11 people living in El Paso in a two-bedroom, one-bathroom house. There were my five cousins (my father took them in after his brother in Juarez died), my two brothers, me, my father and mother and my aunt. Later my parents had three more children in the same house.

My father was an electrician, and my mother worked at Ft. Bliss in the laundry. They left around 6 a.m. and didn’t get home until about 6 p.m. My aunt took care of all the kids. She was rough. She swore at us a lot. My mother was very quiet, easy going – she didn’t like to argue or discipline the kids. My aunt used to complain about her a lot to my father. She meant well, but it felt like she caused a lot of division between my parents.

During summer vacation my aunt cleaned house every Friday. She brought down all the knick knacks, waxed the wood floor, and thoroughly cleaned everything. So on a typical Friday, she got us up in the morning, swearing at us, “Get up! Hurry up, so you can get the h— out of here.” We’d get up, wash up, eat, and she’d send us out. We’d hear her lock the door. If we tried to come back for lunch, she wouldn’t let us in.

I was about ten. It was hot in El Paso in the summer. (more…)


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