Hi Me Darlings,
Let me start of by saying Happy Valentine's Day to each and every one of you! This day isn't just for lovers, but for loved ones and dear ones...and you my beloved readers, followers and friends are dear to me. Hope this day and the rest of the year bring you lods and loads of love to warm your hearts.
As much as I would love to be celebrating this day with the boyfie, I can't and so rather than sulk I'll just keep busy and try to focus on other things...but in due time this distance too shall come to pass.
Nevertheless, I have another anniversary that I kind of celebrate every 14th of Feb. Five years ago today, I set foot on this US soil for the very first time. I remember at the time when my Mom told me she had booked our tickets for Feb 13th to arrive NY the 14th, I was beside myself...why? how could she? It was supposed to be the first Valentine's day with my then boyfriend and I had been looking forward to it with so much anticipation *sigh* Well after all the huffing and puffing, the excitement of moving over took over and I was fine.
I packed my bags, and things that I considered precious. Letters/notes between my then bestie and I, pictures of high school, college, family members, little items that had some form of significance...and then we were off. The journey of the unknown, literally. I was just about to begin 200L, my Mom quit her job... she had visited before, but I hadn't. All we had was God, each other (my aunt who we were going to stay with) and just the belief/hope that in the end it will all be worth it (even though there were times we doubted this).
When we arrived at JFK, and walked outside, we were welcomed by the worst snow storm of the season, about 15 - 18 inches of snow piled high all around. I froze. This couldn't be! It felt like I was walking through a cold-room, only this was bad...real bad Michael Jackson! But I was here. In NYC. And I was curious to see more, and see if it was anything like it was in the movies, on the news and all of that. My aunt isn't a fan of cooking, so we made a pit stop @ KFC...and then we went home, to her apartment. It was tiny! I remember thinking to myself, this can't be the entire apartment, there's got to be more...probably in the morning I'll see all of it.
By morning, I realized there wasn't more to see. Just a tiny match-box like apartment. I was shocked. How could an apartment be so tiny? How could this be...home? Well this was going to be my new home, and so I had to find a way to love it or deal with it.
Five years later...we are still in our tiny apartment (though my aunt has moved to Houston) and now, it is home. How? Why? We've bonded. I have so many memories in that match box. When I think of certain milestones and experiences, I can't help but think of the matchbox home. If walls could talk...the walls would probably know me just as much as any of the people closest to me.
Looking back, there were rough times. Having to work two jobs back to back in cold winter weather, when I had never worked a day in my life before. I went from Sears>TJMaxx>Bath&BodyWorks>JPMorganChase>Marketing>Ad Agency, a steady climb that I am proud of; and generally adjusting and making friends, and all the other stuff that people face when they move. But all in all, I am grateful! And I believe the move was worth it. Better opportunities for me to be me, without feeling pressured or judged (story for another day). Freedom not just for me, but for my Mom. We all know what some of our Moms go through in the name of marriage...and some women don't get the opportunity to break-free and achieve their dreams and just not feel like prisoners. I'm so glad she did.
So here's a toast to every immigrant (legal and illegal)...may the good Lord bless your/our hustle, and continue to open doors for us and increase us. May we be the head an not the tail...and may He enlarge our territories to honor of His name. Thank you Lord for everything you've done, and continue to do in our lives...Amen.
PS: Excuse my going all religious for a minute, but 1) I have to because I am nothing without Him. 2) It's MY blog :-)....deal with it!
Once again, Happy Valentine's Day and please continue to show love beyond today. Make it a habit. :* :*
Hugs and Kisses,