I left the house when I was nine to work and pay for school. We were poor, and with so many siblings, we had to leave to pull coca leaves. I grew up away from home. When I was in third grade; a man brought me to a farm—and I turned thirteen there. In those days we would work for eight hours in a small village outside Las Chilupas. That’s when a guerrilla called “Restrepo” came to the village. He asked me if I wanted to join. I said, no; taking up arms seemed hard to me, and I was scared....
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