Try looking at someone that just stepped aside from the counter of a bank teller and see if he or she moves his or her head left to right – or smiles. You would be able to know the whole story thereafter. Upon realizing one’s current financial situation, the distinct and common query we would all have is “when (will it get better)?” I tried using this quizzical verbiage to initiate small talk when it was my turn to move my head left to right and was responded with “hopefully soon”. But I’ll take that as “who knows?”
…Why are we here then? Have we envisioned an overrated America, such that we now fail to understand the changes that come with the times? My guess is that we deny the fact that even this great country is subject to some downtrend in the same way our former countries’ and others’ encounter. There is hope, we hope! And we just have to patiently wait.
People from distant places had some hopeful vision, for better lives for the family, here in America. Most exerted a huge amount of time, effort and money, establishing ‘whatever’ possible means for an ‘acceptable’ future over the long term. I dare not use the word ‘best’, preceding the word ‘future’ because as we know, such word is variable.
My coming to America separated me from my children for two years, believe it or not. I felt that I have abandoned my minor children to pursue a supposed un-selfish dream to provide for the milk and honey. I missed two birthdays for each of my children, two Christmases, my son’s stage performances dozens of PTAs and I missed simply being with them when they needed an embrace of comfort, most especially, missing the opportunity to go upstage to pin a medal to my seven year old daughter for academic excellence. Worse when I mentally buried my father who succumbed to heart failure and I could not come home as the processing of my residency in America needed me to stay within the land; and worst, when my sixteen year old daughter went through an ovarian cystectomy. I was not even informed until after her recovery. I felt betrayed for being deprived of saying a mother’s prayer for her daughter, to come out of surgery safe, and maternally comforted.
What have I done to have pursued a dream turned to a nightmare? Successive, horrific experiences, that I hope, would not have to be borne by any mother. I can only trust fate, nonetheless, that the years have healed these aches when I finally reunited with the whole family to join me. But will the two years of void and maternal absence be forgiven? My worst fear is that all of my now grown children have never forgiven me for leaving, even for the right reason.
Should I regret not to have taken into consideration, unforeseen factors that would be instrumental in affecting their lives emotionally? All I did was come to the United States of dear America for the family, for my own share of the “american dream”. But does it really matter now, most especially realizing that the younger generation has its own perspective and definition of a “good, better or best” life for themselves and the ‘American’ way of thinking provides ‘life, liberty and pursuit of happiness’ as a way of life. They therefore will have to decide their own destiny and as their mother, I hope – they will still say “my mother knew what was best for me, bringing me to the USA” …Then I will have known, that I have augmented the void and I can now forgive myself.