The Colorado Sisters, L.A. and Eva Mondragon, Chicana Private Investigators by Juliana Aragon Fatula
Me with amigo and fellow Latin Loco Motion Perform, Manuel Roybal, Sr. and our tour guide in Sicily near Mt. Etna, the tallest active volcano in Europe. I loved touring and performing on the military bases in 1995 between the Gulf War and the war that followed. The best days of my youth were spent flying in cargo planes like the ones transporting the asylum seekers from Afghanistan today. Have a little charity.
This summer spun me on my heels, ripped my hair out of my head, threw me on my ass, and kicked me in the gut then punched me in the mouth. I’m not being hyperbolic; I’m describing how I felt when I faced my son and asked him why he refused to get vaccinated against Covid 19. He said, we’re in a civil war in this country. Vaxed and the unvaxed. He shouted his theories. I remained calm and quietly wept. I gave up and accepted his choice. I’m writing this because I need your prayers or whatever voodoo you do do because I’m desperate for a miracle. If my prayers are answered, I’m worrying for no reason; but reality, science, facts, statistics and the fact that we live in a county notorious for not wearing masks or getting vaccinated has validated my fears.
So today, I’m going to stand tall and ask all the ancestors to send their healing power and energy to my son and protect him. I’m going to smudge sage and sweetgrass and burn copal and chant and drum in the spirits to surround him with a safety net since he won’t do it himself. I’m going to think positive and remain calm and peaceful because there’s not a fricking thing I can do. He’s an adult. It’s his body.
As for my healing over this heartache, I write. I’m writing a book review for a writer I greatly admire. I’m working on a speech for an event in September called Latina Voices. They invited me to speak at the ten year anniversary and asked if I’d write a poem about Latina Voices to celebrate the event. So I’m writing a poem and trying something I don’t do and rhyming so it’s easier to memorize. Ha. I’m also scouring my closets and jewelry drawer for my regalia as a Corn Mother 2022 photo shoot and working on what shoes to wear and how to style my hair. Yikes.
I have several writing projects in the works, always. I have completed two manuscripts, a memoir of poems called Gathering Momentum. I’ve also completed my first mystery love story, The Colorado Sisters and the Atlanta Butcher and will be submitting it for possible publication with a Chicano/Latino Press. There are only a few, but it’s important to me to be represented by mi gente.
The mystery is complete but in my head are two more mysteries involving the Colorado Sisters, L.A. and Eva. They have been described as fascinating characters and the men in their love lives have that certain je ne sais quoi that makes women swoon. Ooh la la. The love scenes steamed up my glasses one night and I had to take a cold shower. The characters are unique, funny, mysterious, and professional. I admit I’ve fallen in love with the characters I’ve created and their little world and the Love Shack, the 35 foot Airstream that serves as home base for the P.I. biz.
I’m proud of the work and the creativity that went into this manuscript and I’m anxious to write the next one and the next one. If nothing else, my writing and researching, and reading, and submitting keeps my head focused and my eyes on the future instead of the past and the chaos that is the 2020 Global Pandemic and the Civil War that rips families apart.
Keep the faith – you're a Corn Mother and a role model. I know personally how we can't force our children and when they do what puts them in harms way, all we can do is pray and not make it worse. This is such a powerful post and beautifully expresses what we've all been experiencing these last 16 months of the pandemic. The purpose of the artist is to speak the truth and shed light on the darkness.
Hold on to your writing for your sanity. Like you, I cannot understand the argument against the vaccines when I count the deaths and long term impact on so many — but I live in a state where there is a civil war of thought and no way for either side to convince the other until it hits home. May your son remain safe…
Funny, I just used that Civil War metaphor this morning to describe the vaxxed and unvaxxed. Hugs and prayers for your son and your family and you. And keep writing–always keep writing.
So painful when those we love make decisions that put them in harm's way. It's good that you can pour your energy into positive actions. And wonderful that you love the characters you've created. I'm looking forward to seeing them in print.
Hang in there, Juliana, It's a different and difficult time we're living in. Your son was right when he compared the COVID situation to a civil war. I've experienced the same thing with people who are close to me. I got vaccinated as soon as I could, but others feel that making it mandatory is an abuse of their constitutional rights.
I disagree. Getting vaccinated is an act of love and respect for others. That said: I'm glad you are writing your way through this. Keep it up!
Juliana, I don't think there's one of us who can't feel your pain or doesn't have someone in our family and stable of friends who doesn't empathize with your son. I am concerned about the need for boosters so soon after I've been vaccinated, and the lack of information out there if we were vaccinated with Moderna (like I was) what happens if we can only get Pfizer or J&J. Can we combine? I had two friends who did the trials and their antibodies are now depleted and one went in for her booster. Knocked her on her butt for three days! I understand there's other things that need to coincide with the antibody levels. Such a complicated problem because it's a novel virus. Viruses mutate, that much we can agree on.
My grandchildren are too young to be vaccinated. Will I wear a mask? Gladly, and without hesitation. But a friend just said to me the other day to make children wear masks in school is child abuse. My eye doctor is so opposed to virtual learning because children's eyes are still growing and to have them in front of a screen for several hours affects their long-term vision. There is no discussion, only lectures. That's dangerous in my opinion, and I feel for everyone who says I absolutely will not or you absolutely must. Points of view and education are the only thing that are going to get us through this.
I'm sorry. I think every family has a hold out. You're not alone. It's frustrating and maddening. Hang on to your creativity and the faith – they'll see you through. Sending virtual hugs and whatever mojo I've got.