My name is Jose Cordova Sanchez, but now I go by Jossie as I am a transgender woman. Throughout my life I have seen many injustices, like having no other choice than to run away to a secure place and leave the ones you love behind. I grew up in a town in Mexico, in the state of Chihuahua, where the rich lived in mansions with paved clean streets while we lived in poor housing with unpaved streets.
I had uncertain memories of my father appareance since we didn’t saw him for much periods of time. Eventually, he lost the land and was forced to move to the U.S. to support our family. When I was 8 years old, we moved to the U.S. to join him in Denver, Colorado. He had aged so much in two years, I did not recognize him. Once I got off that big bus, I stared at him and tried to picture that man I once saw when little. As the years, months, days, and hours passed, I entered high school, the place where I felt to insecure and judged.
In high school, I got involved in Padres y Jovenes Unidos, a social justice group in school fighting to better the academic level of our education. I felt inspired by the movement and the sentimental meaning that I developed towards them. They weren’t just fighting for students and our right to higher education, they were fighting for my family and me – Latino, low-income immigrants who had legal and academic barriers.
I have my own interpersonal oppression that I had been fighting for 17 years. On top of being Mexican, undocumented and low income, there has been another layer of oppression in my life. One October 13 of 2009, I came out to my parents as a transgender woman. It was the most difficult step that I ever took. Upon taking both my parents to their room, I was thinking to myself that today was the day and there was no stepping back. Both supported me as a human being when I told them how I identify. Today, I am proud to say I identify as a transgender woman, heterosexual human being, fighting for human rights and dignity for all.