No country but a country that has suffered the indescribable pain of civil war can understand what it means to be divided. To have the citizens of a nation go against each other seems unnatural, yet somehow history keeps repeating itself, and while it has happened and possibly will happen again, and again, and again in countries around the world, it had been years since deep beliefs had father and son confront each other, hate each other in my country.
For the first time arguments that used to be about baseball turned into political ranting. There was no more pleasant bantering, no more funny bets to walk around the neighborhood naked if the team didn’t make it to the finals. This time it was important. This time it was more, this time it was everything. This time it was brothers and sisters, mothers and daughters, friends and girlfriends and boyfriends practically hating each other. All of the sudden there was a “them”, there was a line and there was a wall between us that never existed before. The friendships lost the broken families. No one would have imagined that would happen to us.
I dropped out of school after my finals. To say that I was heartbroken doesn’t cover it. I felt cheated. By life, by the system I had promised myself to learn how to defend. Cheated by the country that had given me so much, cheated because my dreams were crumbling, cheated because life wasn’t turning out the way I wanted it to be. Cheated because I had known all along I wanted to be a lawyer and all of the sudden I had no purpose, no dreams and no goals to look forward to cross. I was lost.
My sister pounced. She had been trying to convince us to move to Spain (which she had fallen in love with on her trip) practically since she landed. She spoke of how beautiful it was, how mild the weather, how gorgeous the architecture, how hot the guys (for my benefit) how the three of us, my sister, my mother and I, would totally rock the town. How Spain was ours for the taking. How nothing could stop us now. She knew I wasn’t planning on going back to school. She knew what buttons to push and in less than a month we were convinced. Things in the country were tense enough for us to make the decision without regret. We could come back for vacation and every time I felt an ounce of hesitation my sister would say: "Paris is a train away"and she would reel me back in.
So with an aching heart plans were made to leave Venezuela. Passports were renewed and we spent hours online checking local listings of apartments for rent in Madrid. We would spent hours giggling and talking about the bars we would visit, the museums we would learn from and the weekends in Paris to be had. I also researched college campus and was even more impressed by those than by anything else, the possibility of maybe going back to school too sweet, too great for me not to consider it. College, like always was my first love.