My part will be short as an opening of sorts. However, more than anything I want you all to know how amazing it was to be along side Jose and America during their fiesta celebration of their 25 years of marriage. One of my personal favorite moments is when their son (also one of my closest bosom buddies and confidants) face when he saw the shots of them smiling and laughing, “They never smile in pictures, and I am pretty sure I have never even seen that smile…” something along those lines-it will be a moment in my career I surely will never forget. So, to tell their story, BRC introduces J + A amazingly talented son, and up coming writer, Luis Loza to give us a glimpse into these champions of loves beginnings, middles, and how the gift they gave him-a future!
“My parents’ story is one seen all too often nowadays. Two young people that seek a better life choose to head to the land of opportunity. Once the two have made it to the promised land—California—they now must survive in a foreign land with minimal help. Each of them came on their own terms and stayed with a sibling that had already done so. By fate’s whim, Ritchie Valens would be the muse’s voice to bring them together.
In the oh, so torn and mismatched year of 1987, the Simpsons first graced television screens alongside Jean-Luc Picard, the US was reacting to the attack on the USS Stark, and Michael Jackson’s Bad fell into the hands of anyone who bothered to even listen to a radio. 1987 was also the year that semi-biographical film, La Bamba, was released. The rocking rhythms and dashing young Lou Diamond Phillips were not enough to keep a young America from spying the “quite handsome” Jose. While I’m privy to the full details of the night, as I understand, mom was there with her giggling sister and cousin, flirting with my dashing dad. From there, things moved quite quickly, leading to my mom “running off” with my dad to live with him and my aunt and uncle.
Life for a young couple is never easier, especially for someone who may be kicked out of the country at the drop of a hat. Dad worked, mom stayed home. Scraping by they made simple life together. Of course, I would have none of that. Adding a child to the mix makes an already difficult life all the more complicated. Times were tough for the family and making it to the next day was an always worrying proposition. Soon enough, a vacation was taken to visit a friend in the strange little land known as Nebraska.
For a young couple with a small child, Nebraska was the true promised land. It would be place that would rest peacefully in the back of their minds as a reminder of what a wonderful place to raise a child it would be. A few years in, they officially tied the knot, a simple excursion with a small gathering. Come 1994, Simba and Pride Rock were shown to the world, the world’s first internet radio broadcast hit the airwaves, and one Jose Loza had mad the decision to move his family to Schuyler, Nebraska.
This quaint little patch of light hills and vast plains would be our new home. Never one to make things easy for ourselves, the next logical step in establishing a family is to pack and move halfway across the country with nary a friend nearby. My parents pushed on. Soon, we would have our own apartment, and then our own house. My dad would work every night killing himself (almost literally so) to provide for the family. Little by little, they earned and saved and provided so that they might be part of a happy family. It was never simple or glorious, but it was quite worthwhile. Even to this day, the two are working as hard as they can for their children and for each other. They showed to me what true love looks like.
Love is simultaneously the most simple and most complex concept I have ever known. Love generally says ‘I like this particular thing or person more than others.’ If I were to say, “I love my mother. I love my brother. I love my girlfriend. I love my cat. I love cheeseburgers,” most anyone could understand. However, loving a mother is completely unlike loving a sibling, a pet, a tasty dish, or a favorite sports team. It seems there are understood degrees of love.
I have experienced plenty of love. My understanding of love has grown and changed over time. A few years ago, I would have said that I had experienced love like I saw in the movies, but I would have been wrong. Love is not like that seen in the movies. It doesn’t solve every problem or instantly change the world. Love is work and no truer is this shown than through my parents.
I feel that sometimes people have a fantastical perception of what love truly is. True love, the fabled magical force that is the backbone of many a story, is proving to another person and to yourself that you are willing to make every sacrifice possible to make things work. It’s working extra hours to pay the bills. It’s staying up late to have time with the person you love. It’s breaking your back at your job to pay the bills, waking up at 3 AM to put food on the table, and doing it all with a smile. It’s giving everything you are and ever will be to someone else in exchange for nothing.
I have seen true love. My parents have been together for a quarter of a century. This in and of itself is a wonderful feat. Not only have they been together for a long time, though, they have shown me what true love looks like. Life for them has not been perfect. Squabbles, arguments, and worse have come and gone like a wicked tide intent on knocking over the rock that is their relationship. As most couples do, they get through it and move forward together. Love for them is not a happy ending in horse drawn carriage riding towards a setting sun. If you were to ask them though, it is exactly what they’ve wanted. Sometimes money is tight, other times there’s turmoil or sadness in one of their lives, but come what may, they share it together. They look forward to every good moment and bad situation because they can confront them both hand in hand, sharing their true love. I see them living a life I want to live.
I didn’t personally know true love until recently. However, I always knew what it looked like, thanks to a wonderful pair that deserves so much more, but can do without. They have their love and that’s all they need. I will never have the same love they have. However, I look forward to having my own version of a love as powerful as theirs. Until then, here’s to the next 25 years.”
– Luis Loza
B (and Luis Loza)