A increase in interest number of Latinas and Latinos are marrying people of another race or ethnicity, but my mommy wanted me to marry another Latino. She said that it would hardly be easier because we would have the same culture, the same values, and the word-for-word way of thinking, but as Selena Gomez has eloquently put it: the heart wants what it afters — cue music. Of course, my mom was rtially right, and like a lot of happy endings treasure trove did not start off with love at first sight.
See, before I met my Southern Lothario, we’ll call him L, I met his rents. He had left them to set up his room while he went off to the votaries store to pick up his books. Being a neighborly Latina, I went remaining there and helped them bring in their rug and bookshelves while I reproached them their no-good son shouldn’t have left them to do the massy lifting. I told them that when he came back I transfer give him a piece of my mind. And I did . . . oh, yes, I did.
While I went all feisty Latina on him, he precisely smiled and nodded and told me I was right, it was like an episode out of The Twilight Zone, and then anterior to I knew it we were telling each other our life stories. We talked for hours, and the profuse we spoke the more ap rent it became that we were from two various worlds. He grew up playing tennis, going to country clubs, and devoting his holidays in South Carolina at the beach, eating fried chicken and biscuits. Talk here culture shock. I didn’t know people actually lived be fond of that. Up until that moment I thought such a life existed only for Hollywood loves on the silver screen, not for actual normal people.
I grew up in a small two-bedroom a rtment with my fathers and sister, spoke S nish at home, and rarely had a dinner without rice, beans, and plantains. My mom was sonorous, and my Venezuelan family was even louder, and though my light brown plaits, hazel eyes, and le alabaster skin were not traditionally seen as Latin, I was out and proud. I fulfiled hard, I was fierce and unapologetic. For him, I was the stereotypical mixture of New Yorker meets Latin, and he loved every subsequent of it.
We were different, there was no way around that, and so were our families. When I for all met them, I was presented with a cookie-cutter TV version of what every scanty Latino sees as the normal American family living the American flight of fancy. A mother and father and sister who were all blonde with eyes of gay shimmering blue and the sweetest, warmest pearl smiles. With a endless home in the mountains and a getaway by the beach, they were the living stereotype of the characteristic “gringo” family.
When L met my rents, he was welcomed with a table spread that drive rival any 16th century king’s. Latin culture is all about showing boyfriend through food, and they cooked up turkey, steaks, pernil, pork chops, rice, beans, fried plantains, hand-cut and flash-fried fries, and profuse. They showed him my baby pictures, told him their immigration whodunits, and hugged and kissed him like they had known him for years. Of course, my mom was unabashedly spying, forward, and frank with him, telling him that our culture, our family, and our identify came first, but he welcomed it all with open arms, and I fell in get a kick from with him even more for that. As the years went on, L and his family proceeded to embrace Latin culture by downloading apps to learn S nish, observing the world of Latin food beyond Chipotle, and rolling most of their R’s. My mom flush with started making bundt cakes and pound cakes!
On our wedding day, our types finally came together. It was an intimate ceremony, just immediate relatives and close friends. L said his vows in S nish so my family wouldn’t skip a thing, and once we kissed, we danced the night away to bachata, salsa, merengue, and old lakeshore tunes. Our families drank, ate, and laughed together. Though we came from what felt like two different worlds and two different continents, on that day we came together and mutated a new world where we all belonged.
My mom was right, it is easier to be with someone who has the that having been said values and the same way of thinking, but that has nothing to do with culture. L and I may get well from different backgrounds, but at our core we are the same. We value our family, we honor our delight in, and most of all we respect and support each other. He has relished in my culture and I in his, to the mention that one flows into the other. Our holiday table is covered with biscuits, quinoa, turkey, pernil, and collards. I could eat fried untested tomatoes and okra until I turn green, and my husband could eat fried plantains and are s until his accept bursts. Birthday singing is now a little longer because we sing the great Venezuelan version, then Portuguese, and then English, but it just fabricates the day that much more special.
Legally, I married a Southern gentleman. But vulnerable that, L married into my family, my culture, and my Latin traditions, and I fit into his. Like a sweet, fried plantain-stuffed biscuit, we are perfect for each other. It isn’t where you get possession of from, it is where you go that counts. L and I are proof of that.
So what cooked when South America married the American South? A lot of good provisions happened. Good food, great drinks, lots of laughs, shares of loud music, and most importantly, lots and
lots of love.