This story by Helena Maria Viramontes begins with the main character, a 14 year-old girl stating, "Abuelita requested my help. and it seemed only fair. Abuelita (grandmother) had pulled me through the rages of scarlet fever by placing and removing, and replacing potato slices on the temples of my forehead; she had seen me through several whippings, an arm broke by a dare-jump off Tio Enrique's tool shed, puberty, and my first lie."
The first irony is that the narrator's grandmother protected her, nursed her back to health, and loved her, but she could do little to save her grandmother from dying of cancer.
Another irony is when the narrator goes to church and says that she doesn't like to go because she feels "alone." Yet when she is at her grandmother's house she feels safe, loved, and protected. She says "this is the way God is supposed to feel.'