She comes to school every day searching, hoping for a miracle in her back pack. She tries to pay attention, to believe that what she is learning will release her into the wild skies. “Juanita don’t forget to come home right after school and make sure to feed your brothers and sister,” are the words she dreads as she is filling out an application for a summer program at her local university. She wants to tell her mother how excited she is about joining the program . That if she gets in, she’ll take college classes and stay on campus like a college student. But when she does, she is met with two loads of laundry like the pile of dreams she keeps hidden because they may get wiped away along with the grime she is left to clean at home.
Every period she responds to her mother’s texts with a list of demands and to-dos that never seem to end. She says her mother doesn’t have time – too busy keeping an eye on her husband. Checking his Facebook. Following him to Tijuana. Investigating his phone calls. Her mother says she does it for her children’s happiness, but Juanita knows her mother is dying slowly from a sense of worthlessness.
Juanita lost her father to cancer before she was born, and now she feels that she is loosing her mother too.