I still remember that moment vividly. I remember what I was feeling as I was writing down some notes on my notebook that evening of April 19th, of the year 2018. To me, it was a day like no other; for my country, a day that would stain with blood an entire nation. As I was studying for finals week at the Starbucks inside the University of Tampa's campus, headlines were going viral with the name of my country. Nicaragua, where I am from, is the largest country in Central America and to that point, known to be the second poorest country in the western hemisphere. Prior to this day, you would never hear about Nicaragua in the news, much less would it be considered the center of attention of the entire globe or talk of the town in neighboring countries.
Have you ever imagined a president sexually abusing his stepdaughter, and the mother of the girl sending her own daughter to exile due to her accusations? A tyrant changing the nation's parliament to run eternally as President? Having your first lady serve as Vice President? Ever imagined fearing a policeman more than a delinquent himself or getting arrested by waving your own country's flag? Well, these are the people in charge of my country and in Nicaragua, all of this is happening since that dark April of 2018. The government failed to do morally-correct reforms that as a result, impacted retirement pensions from the elderly causing Nicaraguans to speak up. People who support these corrupt leaders are mounting violence, as the regime uses murder to hold on to power since that day.
Fast forward to present day, my country will turn one year in a few days since time stopped there. As a result of so many innocent lives being taken away in order to be silenced, students who face no other threat than caring for the wellbeing of their country are being killed daily tearing apart millions of families. Nicaragua's population of six million people has decreased drastically due to so many Nicaraguans fearing for their life, and exiling in other places all around the world. If you would have asked me two years ago to picture my country in such conditions, I would have laughed in your face because I never knew any of this was able to occur to my Nicaragua.
I haven't seen many of my friends in more than a year due to this political oppression and many high school seniors were taken away the privilege of walking down the Teatro Nacional Ruben Dario or even have their dreamt graduation party. Ever since masses of children, adults, and elderly were killed that April 19th in hopes for a new Nicaragua, they will never be able to go celebrate Mother's Day or Christmas Day with their families ever again.
To anyone reading this, it would be normal to generate some sort of pity to know all of the horrific events my country is experiencing, but as a nation, we feel proud that we have taken a stand together in which the only way is from here, is up. Sometimes things have to fall apart in order for better things to fall back together. The deaths of the fallen heroes during that evening of April 19th, 2018 will not be in vain because thanks to their bravery, we are one step closer to having a free Nicaragua, where corruption won't be a problem anymore.