"I think it’s funny people are surprised when I tell them that I am an undocumented immigrant. Because that’s literally the point. They would have never known if I hadn’t told them. I always thought I had to prove my existence. I tried so hard to be excellent in high school, and now in college. I joined every extracurricular and leadership role possible. I wanted to make my parents' sacrifice feel like it was worth it. This took a toll on my mental health.
When I received DACA, I finally felt like I could be normal. I grew up American, but did not have all the rights. So when this was put into place I was able to get a job, go to college, get a driver's license, get an ID, travel domestically within the US, get a social security number and even go abroad for a little bit, I felt like I could finally breathe. I remember the day I found out that DACA had been taken away from me. It was a Sunday morning and I checked the news as soon as I woke up. I read it and immediately started sobbing, but my roommate was sleeping so I got ready for the day and did all of my homework for that week. I didn’t know what I was going to do. I felt so alone.
The only thing that gave me comfort was knowing that Jesus understood my situation. As a baby, his family had to flee in the middle of the night to another country to save his life. I know what it’s like to feel marginalized. It’s become so important for me to speak out against injustice when I see it because it hits so close to home. I'm getting better. I tried to keep this secret for so long. I often tell people that they may not know who DACA students are, but if they need a visual representation, to just take a look in the mirror. We are all just like you."