Genesis Hernandez Banda


Just your adverage girl trying to become a writer.

Message to Readers

A short story about the horrors I had to see growing up in a country controlled by cartels.

The Truth Behind a Smile

November 12, 2019


On August 8 2019, bodies were hung from a bridge in Mexico." "A decade of murder and grief." These are examples of the articles you find when you search Cartel war in Mexico. But the amount of cartels in Mexico will always be greater than the amount of articles about it, because the society we live in today would rather listen to the latest celebrity break up than the amount of deaths happening in a country.
My name is Genesis Hernandez, I will open your eyes to the truth of what's happening in Mexico because this is a story of a six year old who grew up in grief, and witnessed the horror of death due to the cartel war. Most people have not heard this story, due to the fact that she is afraid to say it aloud, she is frightened that people will look at her differently due to her past. She was around the age of six when she started to view the world as a dangerous place, but before she saw it as a game, all the kids did, we were so innocent and naive. Kindergarten teachers would perform drills, not fire drills, or lockdowns, but they taught the kids to hide under a desk, while the teacher sand and clapped, a video was posted of a teacher doing the same drill, but this time it was not a drill, it was real life, the gunshots outside of the school while the kids sand and clapped with tears in their eyes. 
    She remembers when the cartel began to tax small businesses for large amounts of money, she will remember all the threats against the small business owners, all the kidnappings on the news, she remembers that if the business owners did not pay the ransom, they would decapitate the kids, and send a message to the family members, by placing their heads on the front of their home.
She remembers when the cartel took her dad, she remembers the day her dad returned, and the reaction of her mother crying in the kitchen when she found out what had happened, she remembers when her dad had taken a job in Canada, she remembers driving with her family to say goodbye to her father, she remembers the pain in her heart when she last saw him before he left Mexico, she remembers the day she was playing outside when a man sprinted to her and asked where she lived, before the man was chased by police officers, she remembers moving from house to house so the cartel would not find her family, she remembers driving to the grocery store with her family and seeing a truck with a man holding a guns on it and saying, "They are the good ones." The expression on her father's face as he said. "How do you know." She replied. "His gun is facing down, if he wanted to hurt someone he would have it ready to hurt people." 
Every time someone has asked her why her family came to Canada she replies. "My parents wanted a better education for my sister and I." But the truth is they wanted to keep her sister and her alive. She will remember the horror of this story or the rest of her life, because she is now living in Canada, she is now sixteen, she hides this story beneath a smile. 
The six year old in this story is now on her way to graduate, because of the hard work her parents have done, all their sleepless nights, all the bills, all the times they did not show up to her sport tournaments it was because they were working, she would not be walking across the stage if it wasn't for their hard work.
The six year old is me, I am her, this is my story.


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  • November 12, 2019 - 8:27am (Now Viewing)

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