Adelaida Caballero, a Rebtel Hero
My name is Adelaida Caballero. I was born in Monterrey (Mexico) in 1986. My dad is a construction worker and my mom a preschool teacher. I have two younger siblings, a crazy grandma and a seemingly immortal great granny. I love crochet, knitting and handcrafts. When I was a child I started writing poetry –throughout the years I’ve published a few books in Mexico and Spain. As a writer I’ve also collaborated with painters and musicians, Walfred Rodríguez and heavy metal band RAM among them.
In 2008, I left Mexico to join my Swedish boyfriend in his homeland and after a two-month period of romance and excitement, I found myself struggling to cope with my new reality as a Latin American immigrant. Cultural crashes were my daily bread: exposed for the first time to multiculturalism, I quickly realized that there is nothing written as to how people is. It was then that I became interested in cultural studies.
Almost five years later, I’ve mastered the Swedish language and earned a degree in Cultural Anthropology and Social Psychology from Uppsala University. Currently, I work for my alma mater and the Student Union as a public relation agent, student ambassador and mentor for teen refugees.
Keeping a close relationship with my family and friends in Mexico has been a challenge –one that gets tougher when you add the professional question to the mix. I coordinate book issues, lectures and presentations, so direct communication with editors and promoters abroad is a must. And then there are, for example, traumatic life situations.
Rebtel has made distance an illusion and my otherwise severed family ties to grow stronger: when one of my grandmas died not long ago, it was amazing to be virtually there, at the funeral, speaking to my cousins, aunts and uncles via my dad’s cellphone, without having to rush any condolences due to high costs in long distance calling.
I hope my personal experiences with multiculturalism can be of use to others as they fight their own feelings of loss and alienation.
Kind regards, Adelaida Caballero
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