I meant to do this yesterday, on my true Americaversary, but you know how it goes… We spent the past two days in NYC and by the time I had a moment to sit with my thoughts when we got home, I was too tired to put finger to keyboard.
But I feel like I should mark time with this post, even if it’s not going to be a very elaborate one. (For that, keep checking Full Grown People that will publish my essay on the topic soon.) So, 20 years ago yesterday, I arrived in America. Clearly, I didn’t know back then that I was here to stay. It’s weird to think back to that time, to starting college, to being by myself for the first time ever. But I made it through. I wasn’t alone in it at all — my family and lots of friends helped me get to where I am.
It’s a complicated thing to be an American and it’s even more complicated to love America — especially these past two weeks or so. But there is a reason people from all over the world still come here searching for success, happiness, opportunity. There is still magic here, even if as an immigrant you end up with a sort of boring, average life like mine. (Ok, maybe my life is not that boring or that average.)
Yesterday I took Sam to see the Statue of Liberty. He wanted to go and it was an awesome experience to share. I am not sure how much of it he understood — I feel like he was sort of storing information in his little brain for further exploration at a later, unexpected time. He was more excited about the gift shop than the plight of immigrants. He is a true American, isn’t he?
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I had lived in Japan, Germany, and Italy – a total of six years before age 18. Although I enjoyed and learned from my travels, I really appreciated the comforts and rights I had living in the United States. God knows, we’re not perfect… But most of us try to do the right thing .