Distance Between Us
In the memoir, “The Distance Between Us,” by Reyna Grande, Reyna explains how her and her three siblings managed to grow up without any parents. Mago, Carlos, Reyna and their new sister, Betty, all live a rough life without any real type of love from their parents so they have to rely on each other for guidance and support. The four Grande children formed a special bond over the years that they will not leave anyone behind. Each character in the memoir contributes significant personality traits that help the others cope with their current situation.
First, one of the oldest Grande child, Mago, who is caring, courageous, develops leadership amongst everyone and is capable of being a good mother at such a young age. Mago’s mother left her with a huge responsibility to be “their little mother” (12). Mago was stripped of her childhood and forced to mature up. Mago molded Carlos and Reyna into who they are today because of the absence of their mother when they were younger.
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When she found out the news about the new baby coming, she quickly said, “they’re replacing us”(33). Mago wasn’t please with her mom new baby because she told her mom. Carlos and Reyna believes Mago portrays a much more better mom than their real mom.
Following by Carlos, the second oldest who has a great sense of humor and has ambition to support his sisters. Carlos may not have been the bravest, but he did the best he can to support his sisters when they needed it most. When his sister, Mago, was feeling down, “he tried to make Mago laigh by telling us his favorite jokes about a boy named Pepito” (38), Carlos was sad when his mother left and Mago was there to support and encourage him to not be sad over it. Reyna always encouraged Carlos to do his best in whatever he was doing.
Over the months, Carlos sacrificed himself and lost connection with his sisters because he was always gone with a male guardian doing labor just to support his siblings. Carlos may not have been there at some points, but he was always back at the end of the with his sisters. When their mother came back, he became a man for not just his mother, but for his sisters as well. When he got sick trying to protect their land, his Abuelita asked to take him home but refused and answered, “no, no, no. I want to help Mami with her dream house” (128). Carlos had wanted to prove to his mother that he wants her to stay badly, even if it could cost him his life.
The second to youngest of the Grande children, Reyna, who is much more of a supportive friend than is a sister, would always boost everyone’s confidence in the memoir. Therefore, it gives confidence to everyone in order to succeed. Reyna was always the most baby in the memoir but Mago changed that and taught her how to be brave in the time of need. Reyna looks up to Mago the most because Mago is the only one who notices what she does. Carlos supports Reyna, but he’s also going on away trips to find a decent father role model. Mago once told Reyna that, “it doesn’t matter that there’s a distance between us now. That cord is there forever” (21). Mago wasn’t Reyna’s real mom; she tried her best to be the best she could be for not only Reyna but for Carlos and Betty too.
Last, the youngest of the Grande children, Betty. She is not portrayed a lot in the memoir but she was most close to Mago since she took care of her when their mom left. Although, Mago didn’t like it at first throughout the memoir because when her mom, “handed Mago her little girl and told her to take care of her while and Abuelita Chinta prepared dinner,”(73) she refused. Mago knew she was not going to be responsible for a child that wasn’t due to her action. But Betty quickly adapted and eventually Mago and the other siblings grew a bond that was inseparable. Even if, they didn’t accept the fact that they had to take care of Betty when they were struggling on themselves. Mago realizes that the mom put Mago in a difficult position.
In conclusion, the 4 Grande children had no parental guidance other their the oldest sibling, Mago. We learned that no matter what kind of obstacle is thrown at the siblings, they would overcome everything together. They will all stick together, and make sure no one will be left behind. Mago, Carlos, Reyna and Betty all love each other very much and they never want to lose each other. They all carry a special bond that certain families don’t have, which is struggling through a tough time and still manage to stay with one another.