Bianca Mujica is one of the Latina students KERA met last week during the National Hispanic Institute’s annual meeting in Dallas for the first time. She wants to be a writer of both fiction and non fiction.
Here’s a poem Bianca wrote (not sure when) that she recorded.
So this is my life. And I want you to know that it is both happy and sad.
I’m still trying to figure out how that could be, might I add.
It’s not as easy as it looks, to put this smile on my face.
But I get so used to it, that the tears don’t leave a trace.
I’m supposed to be the rock – the one that never cries.
But really, my happiness is just a disguise.
Sometimes I try to let it out, but only when no one’s around.
I realize I hold it in for too long, so I end up breaking down.
I think I’m depressed – I know it’s hard to believe.
You would think I was joking if I told you I want to leave.
I no longer have the strength to do the things I once did.
More and more I find myself wishing I could still be a kid.
Without a care in the world is the act I put on.
And for a second all my problems seem to have gone.
Everyone thinks I’m this innocent little girl;
They try so hard to protect me, as if I’m a pearl.
They think I don’t know, they think I’m so lost.
I just go along with it, but for a cost.
Sometimes it feels like they don’t know the real me,
I just don’t know how I could possibly make them see.
I only act this way in attempt to forget my past…
If only I could find a way to make the innocence last.
My parents have no idea what’s going on in my life.
Then again, it’s hard to be husband and wife.
They’re always fighting, they never can agree.
I might as well be living in the middle of World War III.
I know they wonder, and I know they care.
But I wouldn’t think of telling them – I wouldn’t dare.
They work all the time, and they work extremely hard.
For them I act strong, and never let down my guard.
My sister is so oblivious; we try to salvage her mind.
But sometimes I wonder if she pretends to be this blind.
I have to protect her; I’m expected to be her second mom.
Which only causes fighting, and it’s hard to remain calm.
She thinks I absolutely hate her, which couldn’t be a bigger lie.
I just don’t know how to say I love her, no matter how hard I try.
She’s actually very sad; like her big sister she fakes the smile.
She’s only ten years old, yet she doesn’t think life is worthwhile.
I look around me and know I’ll never be good enough.
Feeling like that all day, makes going on really tough.
I look in the mirror, and can’t help but hate what’s there.
Am I the only one who thinks like that? Because it doesn’t seem fair.
Why can’t I be taller? Or skinny or pretty?
I see nothing but the bad in myself, and it fills me with pity.
Maybe if I was beautiful, and finally felt thin,
My life would be different than how it has been.
Often I feel that no one loves or even knows me, for who I really am.
He’s the one to blame – I should’ve known all along he had a plan.
He used me, my ignorance, and all I didn’t know
to his advantage. So when I called him out on his lies, he made a big show.
He demanded to know why I didn’t trust him; making it seem like it was my fault.
And stupidly, I believed him – which became the default.
What I’m left with are memories. Only the ones that taunt me.
I constantly wish to take everything back; just the thought of it is haunting.
There’s a lot that I risked for him, including my parents’ trust.
And if I ever told them, they’d be filled with disgust.
What I hate most of all is that my efforts went to waste.
My dreams ran away; so I gave up on the chase.
We fell out of love, now I feel so alone.
Sometimes I feel the solitude seeping through my bones.
While everyone else has fun, and makes all their plans,
I remember the amount of friends I have can fit on my hands.
I don’t like to talk to anyone about anything at all,
Yet I know that’s just setting myself up to fall.
I know there’s people that care; they try to get me to talk.
But it’s just too hard for me, so I continue to walk.
If I tell them what’s going on, it would scare them away.
So I take it slow, I take it day by day.
Then I sit back and wonder, ‘Are these problems even real?’
You’d think that would make it easier – but now it’s harder to heal.
I guess I’m a fake who doesn’t know right from wrong.
And all this time I believed that for once, maybe I could be strong.
I don’t know how much more I can take, how much farther I can go.
Because of this uncertainty, I want you to know:
The smile has always been fake; my eyes are filled with pain.
When someone finally noticed, they just called me insane.
I’ve wanted you to know, I would’ve told you sooner.
But I didn’t know how to bring it up, so I hid it in my humor.
I don’t have a reason to feel this way; there’s people who have it worse.
Yet I’m still convinced I’ll always be stuck with this curse.
Strangely, I’m proud to say that this is the real me.
I’m sure we’ve all had these moments – wouldn’t you agree?
I feel a tiny bit better, like a weight has been lifted off my heart.
I’m having a hard time accepting myself – but hey, it’s a start.
I’m trying my best to move on, but it’s harder than I thought,
In this ongoing battle, that I’ve fought and I’ve fought.
I’ve lost and I’ve won, but it’s all in my head.
The war never ends, as I lie awake in my bed.
I skip meals and lose sleep; I stay awake just to cry.
By the time I wake up in the morning, my pillow has already dried.
No one can imagine the amount of tears that I’ve shed.
No one will ever hear the things I’ve left unsaid.
Do you ever have those messages where you never click send?
Afraid of them knowing the real you, even though they’re a friend?
That’s what my life is like, all day all the time.
I write words all over papers, I hide my feelings in these rhymes.
If you’re reading this that must mean…
That I trust you to know the things I have seen.
And if you’ve ever felt the way I do, maybe you do right now,
Don’t worry – it will get better somehow.
One last thing, that I want you to always know…
No matter who you are or what you do, or even where you go…
Love and happiness awaits you; you’ll find your way to cope.
Please, never give up, because you still have a little something called hope.