Saturday, May 12, 2012

My Family Culture

I struggled with choosing 3 personal items to take with me if my country was devastated by a catastrophe.  The most important things, my family, will be with me.  I would hope we could also take our animals.  They are considered part of the family.  After much thought I decided I would take my favorite family picture album OR if technology would be available, I would take my portable hard drive that has all the pictures on it.  Next, I would take the gold cross that was my grandmothers.  My mom gave it to me when I turned 18.  Finally, I would take my wedding album.

All of these things are very special to me.  Pictures are what help us to remember our family and good times together.  The wedding album is significant because it contains the last pictures taken of my husband’s grandmother.  She passed away about a month after we were married.  The cross is special to me because it was my grandmother’s and it represents our faith in God.  If I could only keep one item, it would be the cross because it would remind us to have faith in the hard times ahead. 

I actually had a hard time coming up with 3 items to take with us.  I feel if we were together as a family that would be enough. 

This assignment made me recall a conversation I had with one of my students a few weeks ago.  She had come into my classroom to complete some work and we began talking about her experience with hurricane Katrina.  She was 12 years old living in the 9th ward when the hurricane hit.  She and several of her family members had gathered at one house to ride out the storm.  When it became apparent they needed to leave, they walked to a bridge where they were picked up by The National Guard and taken to the Superdome.  She spent five days there and said it was awful.   When they had to board the bus to come to Texas they told her she couldn’t take her dog.  She said the hardest thing she had to do during her ordeal was to tie her beloved dog to the fence with all the other pets that had to be left behind.  She lost everything to Katrina. She didn’t get to take anything with her.  She said that didn’t matter because her family was together.  They had all survived.  Now, almost six years later, she says the hurricane was a blessing.  She knows that if she had stayed in New Orleans that she would not be about to graduate high school with honors.  She says that she would probably be a mom and a high school dropout.   Next year she is going to college to study international business. 

This student has taught me that material things don’t matter.  What matters is family and what you carry in your heart.  That is my culture.  Family and faith are the most important things in life.

1 comment:

Deborah Santana said...

Wow I bet a lot of people experienced the same pain of leaving a beloved pet after Katrina. As you I believed that pictures keep memories alive and also that grandparents are for some reason REALLY special for us...