India to New York
"WE HONOR THE SACRIFICES OF OUR FAMILY BY TRYING TO MAKE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE."
My grandparents were refugees at the time of partition in India from, what is now, Pakistan to present India. They worked long and hard days doing blue-collar jobs so that my parents would have a better chance at life. My parents chose to honor their sacrifices by seeking a better life in the United States.
We came to this country because my mother had a fellowship. We landed with just over $800 in NYC. My father’s MBA was not accredited in the United States so eventually he went back to school to repeat his degree. They recognized that the caste system in the US is based on where you go to school so they sent my sister and I to the best high schools and then the best colleges. I am now in law school working to make sure our systems provide everyone with a fair shot at success and my sister is teaching English helping the next generation learn empathy.
We honor the sacrifices of our family by trying to make the world a better place. We believe that the promise of America can be a reality for all of us. We are Americans.
Aditi came to the U.S. on a H4 Visa.
Iran to Seattle
"my immigrant story is tied to so much loss and despair….pain and anguish that has yet to heal 30 years later."
I was born in Iran, and at the age of 10, my family and I absconded from the multi-systemic injustices and immigrated to the US in hopes of extended opportunities and freedom. I was about 3-years-old when the Iran-Iraq war started. My experiences as an immigrant child growing up in the US helped me gain an appreciation for the gift of life. This is because my immigrant story is tied to so much loss and despair….pain and anguish that has yet to heal 30 years later. Through the years so many of my family members passed away (both grandmothers, uncles, aunts, cousins), and I never got to see them again. I grew up here wishing that just for one holiday in my life I could have family around and feel the love that everyone else seemingly felt. Turning our backs on immigrant and refugee populations would mean we are no longer willing to nurture others like myself who have a chance to grow and contribute to what makes America already so great. I ask you to please continue to fight tyranny and injustice by keeping the conversation going. We cannot allow this president and his administration to change the core American values that have been admired by the world through so many decades of exemplary practices of inclusivity.
Bahareh came to the U.S. on a Refugee Visa.
Guadalajara to New York
"I thank America for the opportunities that it has given me and will be forever grateful."
My mother, father, siblings, and I had been living in a poor part of town in Guadalajara, Mexico. My father worked as a ranchero and my mother used to waitress at a local pub and restaurant. I was the oldest of all my siblings and therefore, the leader. I had to set an example for the younger ones and had to take care of them from the dangers of the world.
One day, I was at home when I found out my father had been killed. It was a tragic day and my mother, devastated from the loss, wanted to move to America, speaking of being safer there. We moved the following week, wanting to leave Guadalajara and the crime of the small town. We were missed—and there was no one else to care after the ranch since my father died, so they closed it down—but it was necessary. We no longer wanted to live in such a dangerous place.
In America, my siblings and I went to school and had good grades, and my mother works as a waitress, yet again. I grew up to be a police officer, wanting to be able to prevent crimes in my city, New York, like the crime that had happened to my father. I thank America for the opportunities that it has given me and will be forever grateful.
Marseila came to the U.S. on a Spousal Visa.
Stories credit of My Immigration Story