I pray for the Cuban embargo to be lifted. Like today. Or as my friend said, yesterday.
I pray that my Tía Rosa in Cuba is surrounded by angels. She had a stroke that affected her brain. Not her heart. My father told me this and I thought, she has too much heart for it to be destroyed.
My Tía Rosa is the matriarch of the family. She is the one that makes all the decisions. She buys the eggs for the entire family. She makes connections for everyone. She is strong and cries when she needs to. She used to sit right next to me while I had dinner to make sure I ate everything. She gave me meat while everyone got eggs and I couldn’t win the argument that we should all eat equally.
She is the one that told my mami that she should be proud of me. I’ve neglected her this past year. I used to call every month. Every month she asked me when I was going back. Every month she told me about the plant she has been growing for me. It is beautiful she said and will give me strength. Sometimes we would cry. It’s too painful to be far apart. I’ve neglected her because calling has become difficult. I haven’t been in the position to send money how I used to. I haven’t been able to fork over the extra money to call every month. I can’t save up money yet to go visit. I want to see the rest of the world but I always end up going back to Cuba.
I will have to go again this year. This is not what I really want to do but it’s Tía Rosa we are talking about. She is like my second mother. I have to ask for forgiveness. I have to go back and try to help her. Or just sit with her. I could gather up water from the well.
Right now all I can do is pray and save money. No Egypt, No India, No Indonesia, No Spain this year. It is Cuba, insha’Allah. But it has always been Cuba.
The only thing the embargo has been able to succeed in is breaking up families. I pray that Barack Obama has the strength to lift the embargo entirely. My mami is in Miami. It would be easy for her to get to Cuba to see my Tía and spend some time there. It would be easy but it’s not.