Scared and confused, I pedaled home and confronted Lolo. I remember him sitting into the garage, cutting coupons. I dropped my bike and ran over to him, showing him the green card. “Peke ba ito?” I asked in Tagalog. (“Is this fake?”) My grandparents were naturalized American citizens — he worked as a security guard, she as a food server — and they had begun supporting my mother and me financially when I was 3, after my father’s wandering eye and inability to correctly provide for us resulted in my parents’ separation. Lolo was a proud man, and I saw the shame on his face me he purchased the card, along with other fake documents, for me as he told. “Don’t show it to many other people,” he warned.
I made a decision then I was an American that I could never give anyone reason to doubt. I convinced myself that if I worked enough, if I achieved enough, I would personally be rewarded with citizenship. I felt i possibly could earn it.
I’ve tried. Within the last 14 years, I’ve graduated from senior high school and college and built a lifetime career as a journalist, interviewing several of the most people that are famous the country. At first glance, I’ve created a good life. I’ve lived the American dream.
But i will be still an undocumented immigrant. And therefore means living a kind that is different of. It indicates going about my day in fear of being found out.