Thursday, March 10, 2005

it's not even green... the card, that is...

well folks... i'm sure many of you have read and sympathized (or not) with me over all my green card woes... and i'm sure that if you haven't witnessed it personally, you've most certainly witnessed bureaucracy at its best vicariously through reading about my experiences... and finally, i'm sure you're really, really hoping to god this isn't another deshigrrrl bitchfest about yet another glitch in the process in her ever-sought-after road to becoming a permanent resident of these here united states of m'erka.

well, hold your breath.

ok, no.. just kidding. it's all over folks!! yours truly has officially been granted permanent residency (i.e. green card approved). i am no longer a non-immigrant "alien", but a permanent resident "alien" which basically means that i can do pretty much everything you americans can do except vote in major elections. i can travel freely in and out of the country, i can quit my accounting profession and flip burgers at mickey d's, i can go to canada and mexico without a visa (damn.. maybe i should check on that before i get my hopes up), etc. etc. etc.

it's a great feeling, ya'll. i've been going through this process officially for five long ass years, but it almost feels like the process technically started back when i first came to the states for college in 1991. i mean, i always knew at the back of my mind that i wanted to have the option to live here, and for that i needed a green card. so i had to go through all the proper channels of adhering to strict rules, getting a job (in my major) right out of college, applying for an H-1B visa which lasts 6 years, and in the meantime trying to convince my employers that it is indeed 120% worth it for them to go through mounds of paperwork and legal fees to sponsor me for my green card. of course as much as i bitch about my employers, i am indeed grateful to a few key individuals at my job who put in a good word for me that resulted in them agreeing to the sponsorship.

and trust me when i say, there were times when i just wanted to quit and go back home. a really good (male) friend of mine even offered to marry me for convenience when things started looking kinda bleak.. but i declined.. because i wanted to do it the right way. and i did. and it took a while. but now it's done.

i got word from my lawyer that i was approved last friday, but the official hotness, i.e. the official letter of approval arrived in the mail today.

so yeah.. with a deep breath and a sigh.. i say, congratulations to me on the end of a long ass journey. cheers!