When my parents came to the U.S. in 1992, they left my older brother—who was then 8 months old--in Mexico under care of my grandparents. Their hopes of finding a “better life” for themselves and my brother is what motivated them to come to the US, not to mention the stories that other people would tell when returning to Mexico. Since writing letters was the cheapest way that my parents could communicate with their family in Mexico, they would often send and receive multiple letters from all their relatives. In the letter to the left, my grandparents write to my parents of their well-being and of my brother’s developmental progress, like learning to walk, talk, starting school, and toys he would buy. In the letter to the left, my grandfather replies to my father’s comment about wanting to return to Mexico permanently to see his son and build a house—saying that “[he] should think about it twice because of the difficulty and expensive it is to return to the U.S. If your main worry is your son and the house, don’t worry, because your son is in good hands and you can worry about building a house later.” I remember seeing the colorful envelopes my parents would receive when I was little and wondering why, and it isn’t until now that I realize the importance and value of these letters, as well as the feelings it evoked.
– Evelyn R Veliz