Twice the Work
Cristian — I’m originally from Tijuana. Things have changed around here a lot. It’s like living in another world. Life here makes people go to extremes: steal, fight, do and sell drugs. Things that we don’t want, nobody [from Tijuana] wants. We just want a stable life and a stable job.
I’m not working right now because of my disability. I get upset and frustrated because a person like me can do twice the work of an able-bodied person [if given the chance]. I’ve been working for a store owner off-and-on and I finish my work in half an hour. She’s known me since I was a kid. People ask me if my disability allows me to work like that and I say that it allows me to do that and more. But some people are afraid to hire me.
Sometimes I wonder what to do, where to go. The government agencies don’t really help because they claim they’ve already helped enough. I have been living alone on the streets for 6 years. I try to get ahead, to live. Sometimes I eat, sometimes I don’t.
I’m not going to give up, though. God gave me my life and only he can take it away. I ask people why they drink or why they take drugs. I tell them that they’re only hurting themselves. Why? Life has its ups and downs but, as long as you follow what God wants, you’ll be alright. God never leaves my side.