Jun 7, 2013


The Never Ending Story is one of those movies I watched in my childhood that still has the power to give me the hibbie jibbies (Falkor still scares the shit of DH). There was something so damn haunting about The Nothing (with capital N) that stirred my already over active imagination and made me feel like meeting with IT was a fate worse than death. When I read the book it wasn’t any better, although it probably had something to do with how young I was and how dense, existentialist and philosophical the story is.

I felt, while I was struggling with my immigration issues, that I was in the middle of the Never Ending Story, no hope in sight, in a quest, escaping from fate, battling against an unbeatable foe, Sisyphus and I were one.

I swear sometimes I felt like The Nothing was in relentless pursuit of me and the life I had forged here was Fantasia and The Nothing was bent on consuming it, consuming me.

Luckily the movie ends happily and so does my story in that regard. I am currently working a well paid job (even if the hours are ridiculous). I have a cute little car. I drive around sometimes on Sundays, when DH is off playing baseball, with the windows down and the music blasting and I feel such giddiness and over such a simple thing…amazing how unappreciated the luxury of movement is, the freedom that legality offers you. The joy of the sun on my face and the wind in my hair, knowing the cops can stop me and I can flash them with my smiley face on the Driver’s License. I look almost manic in the picture in it.

We are planning a trip to Europe with DH in October (London, Paris, Prague, Venice, Florence and Rome in two weeks!), I am going to do what I have dreamed of doing for more than a decade, I am finally going to travel the world (or at least part of it) and life is good. 

Last Monday my sister Patty had her Citizenship test and she passed with flying colors. The whole family (uncles, aunts, cousins, in laws, brother and sister) felt the happiness along with her. She will become a U.S. Citizen in two weeks.

Why exactly is Citizenship something to dream of? It seems an odd thing to strive for, doesn’t it? The abandonment of your own land for a new one, not only in the physical step that was taken eleven years ago when we left home, but in a more official and irrevocable way. Her passport will be blue (no longer burgundy), she will easily enter any country in the world without having to request visas and prove to them you are worthy of visiting and aren’t actually planning on staying. What will she say when she is asked by a stranger where she is from? What will I answer when my time comes? Will she say Colombian? Or American? What will I say? I already struggle to answer between Venezuelan and Colombian; a new citizenship may cause an identity crisis.

My sister will be requesting our mother soon. She is the last of us still in the process of legalization; soon our whole family will be safe.

The Never Ending Story for my mom is just beginning. She has to do the whole process once more; in this case her daughter is the one requesting her when in my case it was my husband. The steps are the same, however: interviews, filling out forms, exorbitant fees to layers and the DHS, affidavits, lawyer meetings, fingerprinting, TB tests, vaccines, uncomfortable questions and the feelings of inadequacy they arise.

I know without a doubt that when her time comes to go through what I went through she will handle it with much more grace, less bitching, less drinking and with a happy heart. She won’t feel the anger I felt, the sense of betrayal and entitlement. No matter how long it takes, what they ask of her, I know she will be happy because we are all here, close to her. That is her Fantasia and The Nothing won’t ever touch her.


Anonymous said...

Do you have any advice/suggestion for someone who is dating an illegal immigrant and considering spending her life with him? I want to be sure that he is the right guy for me but am feeling pressured because of his status. He, himself, has NEVER pressured me or even mentioned it outside the realm of wanting to be with me forever, but I am pressuring myself to be sure because I care about him and know how drastically marriage could better his life (and our life together). Any suggestion about navigating a relationship of this type would be greatly appreciated!

Mel82 said...

What a tough question! I think would be better answered by my Dear Husband…but since this is my blog, I will do my best. :-) and please understand I am biased since I was rescued from my circumstances so my reply can't be objective.

My advise? His illegality is not like terminal cancer, it’s not a death sentence and irreversible, it’s something that can be fixed, so no matter what there is hope.

On the other hand only you can know how much you love him, how compatible you both are, how realistic a life together with someone from a different culture will work out. Marriage is a hard journey to embark on and sometimes for some couples adding the cultural differences might add to the difficulties that every marriage faces.

Luckily for me, my husband is fascinated by everything that is different from him, not just the Hispanic culture and costumes, food, music but every culture out there. I think he thrives with my peeps because he is more like them than I am.

So, whether your boyfriend is illegal or not, I cannot tell you if he is worth the effort, only you know if you want to be with him forever and with all the ups and downs “forever” brings along.

I think is a good sign that he hasn’t pressured you about it and considering men usually do the proposing he is in a particularly difficult spot because he might be dying to marry you and propose and do the whole shebang and be nervous that you might wonder if he is doing it to further his “legal agenda”

Maybe the answer is to do what I imagine my DH did, imagine a life without me, a life where we weren’t together, a life where he has to be with someone else. I think EVERY SINGLE person, legal or illegal, white, brown, black or yellow, imagines that and poses that question to themselves when they are thinking about taking the matrimonial plunge.

If you can’t or don’t want to imagine a life without him then ask yourself how far you are willing to go, how much you would sacrifice, how much money you would spend, how much support you’d give for someone you love.
Because believe me the depth of your commitment to him WILL be tested when the whole process begins, especially if he has a deportation order like I did.

For my brother, since he didn’t have one, the process was fairly simple and took less than six months. So maybe I am misinforming you with my blog and making you believe every process is as painfully long and frustrating as mine. I can assure you they are not.

More than advise you on what to do about his legal situation I would advise you the same way I would any of my girlfriends or cousins. Be SURE he is worthy of your love, be sure he treats you right and respects you and your family (if they deserve it), be sure he is someone you can trust, you can laugh with, talk to, someone with a similar set of principles and ideas of right and wrong as you, make sure he is someone you can share your tragedies and joys with. IF he is, what wouldn’t you do for him?

Ebizzle said...

are you alive?

Mel82 said...

Thank you for asking

I am alive...working hard and trying to figure how to make the blog evolve into something different but at the same time staying on the thread of immigration.

Please keep checking the blog for updates