My mother and I always lived alone. Every summer and Christmas we would go to Vienna. We liked to speak Spanish there and German when we were in Mexico, it was fun feeling that no one understood us. My mother made fun of my grandmother and made me her accomplice. Sometimes I would go to Spain to see my father. I remember he was depressed, his apartment untidy and he yelled at me frequently.

 

When I was fifteen I stopped speaking German. My mother and I used it only to fight now. My mother would tell me that I yelled because I was like my father. I stopped eating at the table with her and ate alone in my room. I was always dieting.

 

When Sarya was born, my sister, I was eighteen years old. My mother asked me if I thought she should have the baby. You’ll take care of it with me, she told me. My Mexican daughter, she calls her with pride. Her father is a clandestine Nicaraguan revolutionary. For years I knew him as Rafael. Then my mother told me his real name is Leonel. He comes to visit sometimes.

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