Monday, July 4, 2016

Country of Origin

When I was a brand new nurse in Saint Louis, I had one of the best jobs ever. The facility was definitely better than most of the other ones I’ve worked in, and the staff quickly became some of my closest friends. I worked the evening shift, and most of my CNAs were from Africa – mostly from the Kenya/Zambia regions.

I had two particular CNAs that I became very close with. We used to have a lot of fun pulling pranks on one another, and keeping the environment light.

I quickly learned that our points of view were very different on a lot of matters, but the biggest one was marriage and country of heritage. They were both devout Christians and took a literal approach on the man and the woman becoming one during marriage. Since my husband is Bolivian, they would ask me about Bolivia as though it was my country of origin.

Questions like:

In your country, do you eat…

I was reading about your country and it said…

At first, I was confused. My country is the USA. I was born here, and I was raised here. But these two CNAs kept asking me about my country of origin, Bolivia, because in marrying a Bolivian, they believed that I had become a Bolivian as well.

It soon became a running joke for us, mostly because they realized that they could get me aggravated pretty quickly when they asked those kind of questions.

“In your country, do you have salad like this?”

“I don’t know. In Colorado, where I grew up, we ate it. So what do you think?”