Gonzalez family’s journey culminates in citizenship

Daughter of immigrants reflects on her path to Wake Forest High


From left to right: Miranda, Adrian (father), Claudia (mother), Melissa and Mariana (sisters)

Noah Pittarelli, Editor-in-Chief

Each year, thousands of immigrants travel to the United States in search for the abundant opportunity offered in its melting-pot society.

Earning American citizenship is often a goal sought out by many, and it was a priority to the family of sophomore Miranda Gonzalez.

Though her parents were born in Mexico, Gonzalez is appreciative that she and her sisters were born in the States.
“My parents were lucky enough to already have the right to live in America as temporary residents. They made sure my sisters and I were born in America so that we could be American citizens,” Gonzalez said. “Their temporary citizenship allowed them to move to Texas without any major issues.”

There were many motivations for the Gonzalez family to journey north of the border.

“It was mostly my father’s job. He worked for an American truck company, working from Mexico. He was offered a better job in Texas from another company and decided to move my family to Texas. Another job offer allowed us to move to North Carolina,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez and her family somewhat recently just celebrated the fruits of their success.

“My parents are both citizens now of about five months ago. It was a very happy moment for us all,” Gonzalez said.
Though Gonzalez and her family had a smooth economic path to the United States, other obstacles stood in the way of an easy assimilation for each of them.

“Learning English was a challenge for my family and me, especially for my parents. They came to the U.S. with zero experience in speaking English,” Gonzalez said.

There are obviously many things being left behind in a move to the United States. With an opportunist mindset, those things are often ignored in hopes for what the destination has in store. For Gonzalez, however, she still reminisces on some aspects from home.

“We moved when I was three years old, so I remember it vaguely. However, I remember it was hard to say goodbye to our family and friends,” Gonzalez said. “I miss being close to our family in Mexico, Arizona and California. We don’t get to see them anymore, for they’re halfway or all the way across the country. I also miss the food.”

Gonzalez was eager to take on American obstacles upon her arrival.

I was excited for the opportunity. I remember hearing my parents talk about all the things that we could be able to do in America. I was especially excited to learn English and go to school in the U.S.,” Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez finds it important to face opposition and persevere. The process of immigration is not so easy from the start.

It’s scary at first, but the opportunities that are given in this country are amazing. You’re definitely going to run into people who are going to try and bring you down, but it’s important to stay true to yourself and make the most of your life in the US.

Many oppose President Trump’s immigration policies, and Gonzalez upon recent events aligns herself with this opposition.

“Lately it has gotten to a point where it is almost too much. This whole idea of Trump shutting down the government to build his wall is quite excessive,” Gonzalez said. “I think the plan to send more troops to the border is also a bit unnecessary, border patrol can also be a bit crazy. I think we should do more to help them rather than shoo them away.”

In hindsight, Gonzalez attributes her years in the US to the determination of her parents.

Gonzalez said, “I’m very thankful for my parents for working very hard to allow us to move here, so I want to make the most out of it. I want to visit popular cities such as New York or Seattle and go to an art college.”