One undocumented immigrant’s life runs an impossibly full gamut of abuse, neglect, sickness and betrayal, yet somehow the determined mother manages to hold on.
Bianca Fungaloi remembers the night before she planned to leave her husband as if it were yesterday. She remembers the time: around seven p.m.; the temperature: bitter cold; the way she heard him approach their house in Ozone Park, Queens by climbing the dozen noisy porch steps.
It was late-January 2008 and her husband had just gotten home from work. After entering their house, he leaned his tall black body to the left, finding his wife fixing dinner on the U-shaped black stone counter. She may or may not have said hi. She could hear the roaring traffic from the highway leading to JFK airport. She was almost free.
Her husband murmured that he didn’t like what she was fixing, a usual complaint. She ignored him; not so usual. He went into the bathroom, took a shower and came back a few minutes later, wearing shorts and a fresh t-shirt. He wanted something else to eat. He was louder now. This time, she responded.
“I don’t care what you want or don’t want.”
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