Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Top Latina Bloggers Retreat 2013 and my Immigration Story!

Yes folks, I am headed out again! This time I am headed for New York for the week. If you remember last year, I was chosen by Latinos in Social Media (LATISM) as one of the top Latina Blogueras (Blogger). I was chosen again this year. This year promises to be amazing since we are visiting the U.N.

Who knew when I started my blogs in 2009, they would take me all the way to the White House and now the United Nations. It's pretty awesome if I do say so myself. And I also get to meet and mingle with other great Latina bloggers at this wonderful LATISM event! I have met some of the women attending and they are amazing. I am also excited to meet the newbies! It will be great to spend time with them talking, brainstorming and learning how to become better bloggers and how to use our influence in social media for advocacy.

I am very excited. It is an honor to have been selected. And, I also have to thank LATISM for putting on such a great event.

Besides the Top Latina Blogger Retreat, we also get to attend the LATISM conference that is also going on this week. This is my first LATISM conference so I am excited to be attending. There will be great speakers and sessions. Plus, there is even an immigration march on Saturday. LATISM is pushing for Immigration Reform. I am all for Immigration Reform because I understand how much a part of this country was built because of immigrants whether they be Latinos or others.

As part of the whole experience, I was asked to write my Immigration Story. I don't have much of a story because I was born and raised in the United States. But my parents did emigrate to the United States in the 1950's. Both came at separate times and met here. They left Costa Rica for more opportunities.

The good thing about Costa Rica, is that people who come here usually come just for the better opportunities. Unlike other Latin Americans, Ticos (Costa Ricans) have the advantage of not leaving their country because of political persecution or extreme poverty. So, my parents arrived here and did pretty well.

It always amazes me how much courage it must take to leave your own country for another. They didn't speak English when they came here. Yet, they worked and lived and made a life. There was a little group of Ticos we knew and hung out with but I know it must have been hard for them. Both worked in factory jobs. I remember my mom also sewed for a living. They didn't have great jobs but they still were able to purchase a house and put us in private Catholic School.

We always had enough to eat and clothes to wear. I am not saying there weren't hard times but they did the best they can. What I am thankful for is that they came here and we were born here in the United States. Being born here, offered us so many more opportunities than we would have had in Costa Rica. We had a great education. I was able to graduate from the University of Miami and have a pretty good life.

I also had the advantage of having two cultures instead of one. While I will always be a gringa first, I am also a Tica. I have two countries instead of one. It is a gift I treasure. I have even taken steps to hold dual citizenship. So soon I will be a Gringa-Tica.

I also treasure the lessons taught to me by my parents. Besides having courage to move away from their country, they taught me a work ethic I still have. They worked hard and taught us we should as well.

Our life has always been easier than their life and I thank them for that. I also believe everyone should be allowed to seek a better life. Growing up in Los Angeles, I always encountered undocumented workers and they were always the hardest workers and nicest people. That was always my experience. I hope that one day others realize that immigrants built this country. We are all immigrants in some way or another. And immigration is not a bad thing.

P.S. Keep an eye out here and on my Facebook page and Twitter feed as I post about my adventures!


  1. Very interesting immigration story. I love the photo, very cute dresses!
    mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

    1. My mom made those. In fact, she always made all our clothes and dressed us alike for years!

  2. I love your story! What a beautiful family you all were :) I applaud anyone to gives selflessly to make a better life for their children.....

  3. What a wonderful story!Sounds like you have wonderful parents

  4. What a great family picture. Thanks for sharing your positive story. Un abrazo!

  5. So nice and interesting story. This content covers good topic of immigration.