Cultural Pluralism.ethnicity/Race theme context/ impact (racial  profile)explain important cultural inputs that make up who I am.This is for a social work class. I had to use terms from book and lectures. I already wrote my story just need help to make it better.
Cultural Pluralism. ethnicity/Race theme context/ impact (racial profile) explain important cultural inputs that make up who I am. This is for a social work class. I had to use terms from book and le
I grew up in a low-income family, as a younger child I lived with my grandmother and aunt because my mother and father were in prison. My grandmother took me and my little brother in because she would be able to collect welfare. We lived in National City in low-income apartments were lots of the families were similar. It was mainly a Hispanic community and most people were living on welfare. When I was nine years old my father passed away because of a drug overdose. My mother who was still in prison decided she would change her ways and she accepted Jesus Christ as her Lord and savior. I share this with you because it is how I became the woman I am today. My life was not very easy, my childhood was not the childhood that kids should have. I remember dreaming of having a loving and complete family with a mom and dad but that was not how it was for me. When my father passed, my mother got out of prison shortly after and she did come to pick her kids up. I have an older brother and sister who lived with their dad, then my younger brother and I lived with my mom’s mother. I was super excited when my mom came to pick me up. I thought I would finally have the family I had dreamed of. It was nice to be with my brothers and sisters and the love of a mother, well that is a gift itself. We did however have to live in a studio, five of us in a studio. As a kid it didn’t bother me, I didn’t even notice that it was an issue. My mother got government assistance such as welfare, government food, food stamps and sometimes food from the local churches. I remember the taste of the powdered milk we would get and the cheese. Because we are of Mexican decent our diet also consisted of beans, red rice and homemade tortillas. Yum those were the best. Mom would make them for breakfast lunch and dinner. It never got old to me. It would eventually fade away as my mom began to work more. My mother had a dream for a better life, and she would find jobs on the side to make extra cash. She would sow clothes or buy wholesale items and sell them at the local swap meets, known as the St Thomas. Then she began washing RVs at the local trailer parks when the snowbirds would come into town. That was some very heavy work, but she was out there doing it all on her own. Or she would take me along, but I wasn’t too much help. I went with her everywhere so I get to see firsthand what a hardworking woman looked like. As the years went by my mom did several things to try and better herself. She pursued her high school diploma and attend classes at CET. She wanted to have a career job that would allow her to be off welfare and food stamps. I remember she was a bit embarrassed to be on those government programs, but she needed the help. She didn’t get her diploma, but she land a job at Costco as a demo lady. She was so proud to get this job because she had a criminal record that would make it very hard for her to get employment. Costco’s demo department gave her a real chance. We eventually moved out of the studio and in to a two-bedroom apartment. The girls, mom, my sister and I shared a room. Then the boys shared a room, we were a bit older at this point, so it was nice to have more space. At this point I was in junior high, my older brother and sister were already working As I mentioned my mother had accepted Jesus Christ in her life while in prison and she held on to going to church. We were there almost everyday and sometimes twice a day. I grew up Christian and the church played a big role in who I became as well. The church had many people who had similar stories to my mom’s. Ex-convicts or drug users who felt that they had the power to change because of God. I made lots of friends here and was embraced by many of the families in the church. I think it was because they either empathized with my story or they had a similar story, either way I felt like I fit in. It was great that my mom found God to use as her strength to keep on a good path, plus having the church their helped her have accountability to her change. My mother continued to work at Costco demos for many years, but she wanted more. Although we lived in rough neighborhoods my mother always kept a beautiful clean place and we were all well-dressed. Friends always admired our apartment. I made friends with the neighborhood kids as well. We lived in the west side of El Centro and to fit in I started to hang out with girls that were from the west side. So, I started to dress like them to fit in. It was always so award for me or a battle within myself. Coming from a mom and dad who lived this kind of lifestyle and seeing that it had no positive effect on their life always made me question this kind of lifestyle offered to me by my barrio friends. However, as a teenager just fitting in seems to be more important. My mother eventually got a job at Costco as a cashier, she was so happy and finally have a sense of success. This woman worked so hard, she worked hard to be better and to come back from all the mistakes she felt she had made in life. I think the biggest mistake she wanted to make up for was being an absent mom for so long. While my mom was hard at work I had more free time to venture into the chola life. I wore dickies and pendletons to school. I fought a friend who had joined the east side gang for my tittle, Lil Puppet. We both wanted the name, and we didn’t want to fight each other but the girls from the gangs told us we had to, so we did. I remember this was in junior high and after school I would have to meet her at the corner church down the street. The whole school knew about the fight by the time last period came around. Everyone was walking towards the corner to go watch us fight, I was so nervous and feeling so pumped up at the same time. How did I even get to this point in life? It was as if you were a Latina in the neighborhood and wanted acceptance this was one way to go about it. So, there I am fighting for my chola name on the corner and that day my mother decided that she wanted to pick me up. She finds me fighting, gets off the car and drags me by the hair to her car. She said if I wanted to fight, she I was going to learn by fighting her. All I can say is after that day I dint want to be a chola no more. I’m glad my mom set me straight and that I didn’t get deeper into that scene or lifestyle. But when you grow up in the barrios its easy to get sucked up in that kind of lifestyle. I think for me personally it was easy to walk away because I seen what it did to my mom and dad. A few years later my mom had saved money and wanted to buy a home. She worked very hard to have a nice home for her kids and she made it happen. We ended up living over by the southwest high school and are social economic status had finally change. It’s interesting how life can be different by living in a different part of town. The southwest side had different environment and when I got to high school there were no more chola friends. Now I wanted to be part of school clubs or the drill team. I never did join any of those because I was to shy but at least I didn’t want to be a chola anymore. Watching my mother work so hard for so many years had such a huge impact on my life. I did venture into some troubles throughout the years, but I always knew it wasn’t who I wanted to be. More than that, watching my mom work so hard to get out of a bad lifestyle made me really think twice about my choices. I instead I chose to be like her as a hard-working woman. A woman who is fearless and goes after the things that she wants in life. I know what its like to struggle, I know how easy it can be to get sucked into bad things in life. But more than anything, thanks to my mother, I know that when you want a good life you can make that happen as well




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