When I lived in the Dominican Republic, one of my best friends gave me a good luck bracelet. It was light, silver and smelled like my best friend’s perfume. She gave me that an hour before I took a plane to the USA. She called me to say good bye to each other and we cried a lot because she is like my sister. I met her when we were in preschool. We have been friends for more than fifteen years and that was going to be the first time that we were going to be far apart for a long time. It is important to me because I wear it all the time and I pretend to smell the essence of her perfume that reminds me of all the good memories that we have. When I decided to move to the USA, she asked me, “Why are you moving to another country?” I answered because I wanted to get a better life, study and go to a good college. After that, she said, “I have something for you. It is not an expensive thing, I just want you to have it because this is going to give you good luck in your future. If you have it, just think that I’m next to you during your hard times.” One of those times was when I told my family about my sexual preference. I was scared about what they were going to think, but I just remembered what my friend told me: When you feel sad, just grab the bracelet and think that I’m next to you when you need me. I wish she had actually been there for this experience, but the bracelet gave me the strength of her friendship, even from so far away.
– Jean Rodriguez