I understand this struggle of immigration on a personal level and also the depth of joy it brings to those who cherish their new world; naturally, with recognition that leaving behind family, cultural and community ties are a heartbreak.
Lucky for I, my baba came to Canada not out of necessity, but rather to ensure that his daughter (me, dear reader) have opportunities which extend beyond “marriage at 18 or 19?” Grateful am I, and single still. A reality that surely excites both my parents every time they look at me
and try to see into my ovaries to count how many eggs are left. I still remember my dad studying for his exam, and my wanting to study alongside him until I became bored because there were no pop up pictures in the book.
As such, I am a soppy loser often moved to tears at the site of Citizenship come to life, and equally enraged when some individuals take for granted their Citizenship cards and status. That photo is my card which I cherish dearly.
When my mom and I went to vote for Canada’s 41st Government. While in line, she told me how excited her and my dad had been the first year they could vote as Canadian Citizens. After casting my ballot, I stood back watching with great pride as my (age removed under threat of duress from momma) year old mum ambled her way to vote once more, and again, I was nearly moved to tears.
Until she popped her head around and yelled from behind the voting box: “I JUST CHOOSE ONE, RIGHT?”
In related news, my mother’s turretic inclinations increase with age.
Like just recently when mama and I ran into an old friend, and my mother, bewildered, suddenly became wrapped up in an all-consuming need to remind this woman of how she really was, once a fatso. Though I tried to balance out the conversation, I failed miserably:
“I hardly can tell you lost weight”
“Oh yeahhh….I can tell. You were SO BIG.”
“I really can’t see it…”
“Oh noooo….TOO BIG!!”
“I think you look great.”
“Oh, thanks God you lost ALL THAT MUCH WEIGHT.”
“I honestly don’t really know what she’s talking about.”
On that note: Immigrants and non-immigrants alike, give your mummies a kiss today, please.