By Angelica Casas
It is never within proper journalism to begin a story with a quote, and I always remind my fellow staff members at The Lake Front not to do so, but I think it is appropriate to begin with one on this occasion.
It is in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for.” Ephesians 1:11
My life has had a constitutional dependency on God and this bachelor’s degree does not make the exception.
I come from a single parent low-income home and thought college was only to be dreamt of, but not to be realized – at least not right out of high school. Thanks to Providence, I came to Our Lady of the Lake University on a full paid scholarship. After graduation, and also because of Providence, I will go to graduate school at the University of California at Berkeley.
Through the degree I will earn soon and the one that is to come, I will live my life doing what I love best for a living – telling stories.
Because I tell the stories of others better than I tell my own, I want to leave you with a condensed version of a story I wrote in the summer of 2012.
Jose Solis sells waters and sodas at Alamo Plaza everyday. Unlike other plaza vendors, Solis does not have a booth or a car, or even an umbrella for shade. Solis relies on his wheelchair.
Solis was born with no arms and shortened legs; the name of his condition, he does not even know. His parents abandoned him long ago and he only counts with the help of some neighbors and a good friend to get around. Many times, he has been made fun of by strangers.
He receives Social Security disability benefits, but his mortgage and utility bills are larger than what he receives.
“I don’t like to ask for money,” he says. “I like to work for it.”
Solis is complacent with quenching the thirst of others to make a living. But he also has hopes for a better future and dreams of traveling, especially to Las Vegas.
Despite the suffering Solis has endured from his condition, strangers on the bus and even family members, he does not give up. Why should I?