Miami is everyone’s home. Miami is a place with diverse cultures all in one area. Miami is my home and my family’s home. Miami mostly has Hispanics and people from the Caribbean but there’s a mix of everything here in Miami. I’ve lived here all of my life. I was born in Miami at Mercy Hospital, and when I got a bit older my family moved south of Miami.
My family from my mom’s side is from Honduras, while from my dad’s side they’re from Puerto Rico. I grew up in a Hispanic home, so most of the time everyone is speaking Spanish, Cuban coffee is always being made, and always we have rice and beans with chicken or any other type of meats. My family is the typical Hispanic family, but no one was born and raised here expect for my brother and me.
My mom was born in Honduras and raised there until she was 5 years old. Her mom wanted to start a new and better life, so she left Honduras, and when my mom was 5 years old her mom came back for her and took her to Miami. They started their new lives here in Miami. My mom would always say how when she came into this country that it was completely different. She said that coming to Miami wasn’t that hard, except for the language barrier. Most of the people here in Miami speak Spanish and English, so imagine coming from another country and only knowing one language. It was difficult for her to learn English because everyone was speaking Spanish most of the time, but she learned, and she speaks fluently.
My mother always tells me how happy she was about the decision her mother made to move to Miami. It doesn’t matter where you’re from, Miami makes you feel welcomed. For me, growing up was difficult because I was learning both languages at the same time. I had to learn how to speak, read, and write in English and Spanish. By the time I was in the first or second grade I knew both languages fluently. Adapting in Miami isn’t so hard because you can find people from the same culture, which means you feel more comfortable, but you still get a bit homesick.
Miami became my mom’s home and everyone else in my family. As I was growing up a lot of my family started to move to Miami to be closer to the rest of the family. My aunt from my mom’s side used to live in Honduras, but she moved here to Miami. My aunt left her kids in Honduras, but she did the same thing as her sister, and brought her kids into this country later.
By the time I was 9 years old my cousins were living here in Miami. They went through the same thing my mom went through when she came into this country. They had to learn English, which was hard for them, but they did it. Later on, after my cousins learned the language, they wanted to get their citizenship. They had to study everything from writing to reading and then history. After they passed and got their citizenship, my aunt wanted to get her citizenship, and by the end of the year she was also a citizen.
My family got very comfortable with Miami and it had a good effect on them. My family is very happy here where we are part of a bigger family with different backgrounds and cultures. You get welcomed everywhere you go. Everyone is so accepting and diverse, and you can be who you want to be. That’s why people feel so comfortable here in Miami.
This picture is an artifact and represents my family, the Parrilla family. In this photo it is New Year’s and we had a family get-together. The meaning in the picture is that no matter how far we live from each other we are still a family.
My family is a happy, crazy, funny family. They brought their own culture to Miami because there aren’t that many Hondurans down here. The Honduran restaurants, especially, are very limited and rare. My family makes Honduran food and sells it to different types of people who are interested in tasting it. Now, most of the family lives in Miami and the Honduran culture is getting noticeable. The picture represents my family’s happiness and how close we are and how much we love each other, no matter what.