Not happy to be here

The Washington Times Weekly - - Off The Tracks -

A story out of Wis­con­sin high­lights a lit­tle-cov­ered an­gle of the im­mi­gra­tion de­bate, that of the un­happy im­mi­grant who longs for home:

"When I de­cided to come here with my boyfriend, my first thing was to send the money to my fam­ily, to try to make a bet­ter life for my fa­ther and my mother. It's why I'm work­ing all the time," said Efi­ge­nia Juarez, who works at La Con­cha and also uses its money trans­fer ser­vices to help sup­port her fam­ily in Mex­ico. "I try to send money ev­ery month." [. . . ]

While it's not al­ways easy to come up with the cou­ple hun­dred dol­lars she sends her fam­ily each month, Juarez doesn't think of it as sac­ri­fice.

In­stead, she thinks of her fa­ther, who works 12, some­times 16 hours a day, and still the money is never enough.

She thinks of her mother who says, "If you don't send money, that's OK. We can al­ways eat beans."

And she thinks of her 14-year-old daugh­ter, whom she hasn't seen in nine years.

"I feel like I lost all the best time with my daugh­ter," said Juarez, 35, who's been in the United States about a decade. "But mostly we are all here for the same rea­son, for to help our fam­i­lies."

Juarez said she hopes one day to re­unite with her fam­ily in Tlax­cala, Mex­ico, but she doesn't know when that will be.

"It's hard to make a de­ci­sion when you know all your fam­ily is de­pen­dent on the money you send," she said. "The money I send makes a lot of dif­fer­ence."

— “Money train runs from here to Mex­ico,” posted May 5 at the Wis­con­sin State Jour­nal web­site at

madi­son.com

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