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Having High Hopes and Paying Rent

October 2020/ Interviewed by Jahiro

I’ve known my friend Edgar since I was in 8th grade and he’s always been a great guy especially in tough situations. The reason I interviewed him was for two reasons: first and foremost, he’s a great person and I never get to talk to him because of how busy the both of us are. Secondly, Edgar has gone through a rough patch and I hoped by doing this interview he could have someone to just vent to.


“More of an heirloom”

That guitar has been in my family longer than I have and to be quite honest we lost that guitar for a bit. It belonged to my late grandpa, Grandpa Ladislao. I was young and didn't know him too well but I heard a lot of stories and he seems chill, just having that guitar makes me happy to know that I have family. I don't play that guitar because it's really old, and if I did, I would have to fix many things, so it's more of an heirloom than anything. 

“I couldn't go with her”

When we were in Perris my mom wasn't getting along too well with her boyfriend, so things got really bad, so we had to get out there. My grandpa came and we were staying at a hotel for a little bit but my mom literally had nowhere to go. My grandparents got evicted and we just don't have that much family so the only thing my mom could do was go to a domestic violence shelter out in Brea, but she could only take my younger brothers and, unfortunately, I couldn't go with her. 

Since I couldn't do much, that left me with either going to [my mother’s ex-boyfriend]’s sister or my sister. I still visit them and thankfully they seem happier than before. 

Beginning senior year or more so winterish maybe spring. My grandparents got evicted and had a falling out. My grandpa is very controlling, and he didn't really love my grandma. Basically they split up and the house got evicted, so I had to move to Perris with my mother’s current boyfriend, but relationships don't last so I had to move. 

My mom gave me two choices - move in with [my mother’s ex boyfriend’s] sister and go to Perris high school or see what's good with my sister. I didn't know [my mother’s ex boyfriend’s] sister so I tried my luck with my sister who was living with her boyfriend. She was living with her boyfriend's family, so I texted her and told her about my situation. 

She had to see what her boyfriend's parents would do and so wanted to see my grades to make sure I wasn't some juvenile delinquent. I'm an honors and AP student so what can I say haha. They were like, “Okay you can live here with us until you finish high school then after we’ll see what's good.” I was, like, okay sounds good and ended up staying there until the end of my senior year. And it was a nice situation, the family was very nice to me and my sister, they were very understanding of my situation. They weren't like “Oh where's my rent!” So it was nice. After I graduated I was still living there and at the time my sister wanted to move out because you know she's twenty and her boyfriend is twenty-two maybe twenty-three, still living with his parents. So that’s why my sister wanted to get a place and I was like “Welp okay uh i'll help you guys do that and you know she needed help with things like rent and security deposit”. I didn't have a job but my sister was able to provide that for me to help move out. That's the story of how I got my job and how I moved out. It's right here near the March Airfield base and I hear them every morning at 7:30 AM, they play the army song so that's how I wake up. I could see the base from my window! The place is a house in a gated community so it's pretty nice. 

Maybe a month after I graduated, I was taking it easy and my sister was talking about moving for the longest time. And I was like “Well I can't really help you out since you know I’m still a minor,” but she was like “I already told my employer that you're 17 and have your high school diploma.” I pretty much just got the job like that. I've been working since July and it's been nice. I've been able to save up a bit and help pay for that rent. It's nice, I've been saving up for a car so you know I’m out here living. I work about forty-ish hours a week. 

You know I really want to go back to school but with my current predicament [it’s difficult] like if everything went well when I was with my grandparents I would definitely have been going to MVC or RCC but with everything that's happened especially with coronavirus it's been kind of hard. 

High hopes

My plan is, well of course I still have to pay rent. The majority of what I earn goes to the house and groceries but I'm putting money aside to hopefully go back to school in the spring semester if maybe coronavirus will be over. I hope it'll be this spring but right now I'm not in that great of a situation especially since we barely just got the house.

I was hoping that I could be involved with something like law enforcement and maybe become a police officer. All my family or most of my family are HVAC mechanics, run machines, CNC and all that fun stuff. 

When I was really young my grandpa had high hopes for me and my sister always saying, “You're going to be a mechanic” and blah blah and for the longest time I agreed. Growing up my grandpa was always my role model because my dad was nowhere to be found but a lot of stuff happened and made me see him differently and I thought to myself do I really want him to dictate what I do in life. And you know I started talking to him about pursuing a different career and he flipped out on me like, “Woah what have I been preparing you for your entire life for”. I just brought up to see what he would think and he was like “Nononono” he ended up telling the rest of my family and they were like “You’re going to get shanked, you’re going to get shot” and jeez I was hoping they would be supportive. The only person who supported me was my sister. 

For the long term I was thinking about this I don't want to do any gang police officer stuff because I really don't want to get shot, but two things I was looking into was K9-Unit, you know, get my dog, German Shepherd, a partner for life. The second option was to be a detective. 

Before I was able to go out with my friends and now they are paranoid and stuff. When I'm out in public or even when I’m working, I work in the warehouse right away and I go there. The agencies require us to wear a mask, at the orientation they showed us how to do it properly and everyone in the warehouse is still wearing it wrong. It seriously bothers me man. It's not like the best job, they don't tell you much and it's a mess. My sister ended up quitting and her boyfriend got a new job and we only have one car. I plan on applying where they are applying, which is Ross, because I don't want to get an Uber everyday. It's a little too expensive. I wouldn't be working 40 hours if I got a new job then I could look into more college stuff. Most likely I could do college part time. I just need to make sure that I pay rent and all that. 

Oral history is shared with narrator's permission and has been edited for length and clarity and to protect narrator's privacy.

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