On July of 2016, I decided to take a very spontaneous trip to my childhood home, Panorama City, California. When I arrived at LAX, I was greeted by my oldest Uncle, Celestino. Let me tell you, I left California at the age of 4 years old so, little did he know he was going to see me eleven years later. At first he didn’t recognize me but, my mother’s side has a very distinguishable nose so, it wasn’t hard to figure out who was my uncle. Short ole’ man that was full of joy when he saw me. I will never forget a warm moment of that reunion.
This trip was full of getting out of my comfort zone. I’m an introverted-extrovert. I love silence and the feeling of being comfortable in skin at all times and none of this happened for two weeks. My Uncle took me to meet family members that also haven’t seen me in years; there were godmothers that didn’t want to meet me, there were aunts who wanted to know what my parents looked like now because they also haven’t seen them in years, and cousins who wanted nothing to do with me. But, aside from the negative and some positive.
My Uncle introduced me to a young fourteen-year-old, she truly made my travels unforgettable. We walked everywhere: to El Pollo Loco, where you can find real rotisserie chicken at a fast food restaurant, El Gallo Giro, where I ate the greatest huarache that my stomach ever experienced, and then to truly experience social anxiety in another state I decided to learn how to use public transit!
And to be honest, the anxiety wasn’t even that bad! I took a risk and it helped me grow. This trip was worth every single dark moment because there was so much light to cover every bit of it.