We Never Asked for Wings by Vanessa Diffenbaugh
I decided to add this book to my “to read” pile after reading The Language of Flowers when it was a book club selection.
In We Never Asked for Wings, the story opens as Letty is running away from her own children. Her father had gone back to his home country of Mexico and hadn’t returned like he had planned. Her mother decided to go see what was going on with her father, so she took off to Mexico.
This left Letty. Letty has always worked multiple jobs and taken care of both her parents and children financially, but she has never done anything more than that for her children. Letty’s mother has always taken care of the children and when she left, Letty is terrified. She doesn’t know the first thing about her children or how to take care of them.
Letty takes off after her mother. She tells her mother that she has left the children with a friend, although the children wake up to an empty house and Alex, the older child, realizes quickly he is now in charge of his younger sister, Luna.
Letty travels to Mexico with her mother and find her father who is living quite peacefully in Mexico with no plans to return to America. Letty’s mother decides to also stay in Mexico and Letty realizes she must go back and face her children and somehow figure out how to be a mother to them.
While Letty is gone, Alex works hard to keep up the appearance that they are not living alone. Eventually, Letty calls a friend to go look after the children until she returns. She comes home and much learn how to carry on her life without her parents and how to raise her own children.
I thought this book was a really good one. As an educator, I read these sort of stories and remind myself that I have no idea what my students go home to every day. Many of them have lives that I cannot even imagine. Kids are very strong. We don’t give them enough credit most of the time. Make sure and read this one.