Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Swimming the Caribbean Sea with Your Life in Suitcases

It's not very often that someone moves their entire life from one country to another and back again, all under two years. After meeting Javier and knowing that we were going to spend the rest of our lives together, I undertook a rather risky feat of moving my life to Honduras by finding a job there, getting an apartment, and basically moving things from the US in two flights.

After we decided that we wanted to live our future married life in the USA, we started to research how to go about achieving that goal. I knew that any visa that he applied for would take a long time, so we decided that we were going to file for a visa when I went home in Christmas. I spent numerous hours pouring over information on the internet concerning the logistics of US visas, and we decided that our best move was to file for a fiance visa. It was a long and arduous process, one that I sincerely thought would never come to an end (in actuality, the visa is just the beginning - trust me, we have a ton of more paperwork to do).

I had made my life with Javier in Honduras. We had our apartment, our routines, our jobs. The problem was that my family was super far away and I missed them terribly. We had many discussions about sacrifices and hoping that our families would understand. We talked many nights about the realities of our future life - that one of us would have to sacrifice the time with one of our families in order to gain the time with the other person's. Before we even filed for the visa, we had long and lengthy discussions about what this move would mean for both of us - what it would mean for our families - and where we wanted our future kids to grow up.

It's hard, you know, to take in account that half of your family won't be around for important life events - simply because they live in another country. I made an inner promise that we would always stay in contact with Javier's family, and hopefully we could bring his mother over to the US from time to time to visit (or in the future, help us when the kids are born). I also made a promise that we would go visit them in Honduras.

I know that deep down it was hard for Javier to leave his country - the only place that he has ever known. It was deeply hard for me as well - I had made friends, I had many lovely students, I was used to the life there and how things ran, I was used to being around Javier's family. But receiving that visa was so worth all of the pain, stress, and worries. I knew that the visa would help us live the life that we had dreamed of in a place where we were both a little safer.

It has been a few weeks since we landed in the US, and so far things have been great. We have been planning our wedding, looking for jobs, spending a lot of time together, going to different events and out to eat. Javier has met all of my family, my grandparents, and has had the opportunity to do many things that we couldn't have done in Honduras. The weather is cold, but that will pass.

I think, overall, moving is hard. But I think it is harder when you move your entire life (the second move was two people's things - imagine all of the shit that I left behind!) overseas in suitcases, and the airline breaks two of your suitcases (true story). We have many plans for the future, so we will see what life brings us.

[Moving to the USA was one of my goals of my 1001 list, which you can view here.]