My America… A Mother’s Day Reflection

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My America

A
Mother's Day
Reflection

A Special Feature Offered by a Client of
Bethany Christian Services of NJ/NY

After all my life experiences there is something, I will never do.

I will never question a mother’s sacrifice to ensure the well-being of her children. Everything costs something, be it time, money or both. Before I came to the United States I was drowning in debt.

My ex-partner was an alcoholic who never provided for me and our children. He did not care if they had enough food to eat or clothes to wear. After living this way for various years and giving him opportunity after opportunity, I became tired of the way he treated us. I told him to leave.

Then the debt accumulation became worse. While he was living with us, I started to ask people to lend me money. I worked several jobs, but it was never enough to provide for all our needs. I was desperate and had no idea what to do. Every time I looked in my children’s eyes or heard their hungry cry, I remembered that I needed to find an answer to our situation.

I asked people to lend me money, and many, out of the kindness of their hearts, did. But it was still not enough. I kept needing to ask more people for help and was not able to pay them back. My ex’s uncle was always very kind to me and proposed I come to the United States to work and send money back to my family.

It sounded like a good offer but how could I leave my children? My babies? How could I let someone else carry them, feed them, wash them? No one would be able to do it as well as I could. What if something happened?

But then I remembered the times when they were hungry, cold, tired and I had nothing to give them. As much as I wanted to be with them, I had to consider their well-being above mine.

Was it difficult? Of course, it was. Did I cry? Immeasurably. I honestly do not think the ocean could compare to the number of tears streaming down my face as I decided to let go and follow hope. That’s all I had was hope. I did not have family, or a job, or solid place to stay, but I had hope. The hope that living in the United States would allow my children to eat every day even if I was not with them.

I would be a mother to them no matter where I was. I would be the best mother I could be to the children I loved.

So, one day I made the decision to come to America. After arriving in the U.S., the trials became more intense. I had no job and slept on the floor of a distant relative’s home. It was miserable but hope was still with me. Eventually I started working and sending money back home so that my babies could eat. It was an amazing feeling. God had answered my prayers.

Recently, two of my children started living with me. The dream to have my family together has finally come true. I can now hug them, hold them and take care of them like I always wanted to. I thank God, the shelter workers and Bethany Christian Services for being part of the process for me to be reunified with my son and daughter.

It is a dream come true and the best Mother’s Day gift anyone could have. Hope continues to stay with me. Since reunification, both of my children have been able to be enrolled in school, see a doctor and I am hoping to take them to a dentist soon. I am so excited that they have access to such services. I am so happy I can buy them food and clothes and see them enjoy it.

I pray that my son and daughter finish school and can attend college. I imagine my son being an Architect and my daughter a Doctor or Teacher. Whatever they decide to do, the good thing is that they are with me, and now we can follow hope together as a family.

My America

In January of 2019, LIRS launched the My America campaign to lift up the voices of refugees, migrants, faith leaders, and Americans wishing to express an experience or vision that inspires hope. In a time where our newsfeeds are flooded with discouraging headlines about immigrants, this campaign seeks to offer an alternative vision for an America that embraces all those seeking protection. Submit your own story today, or check out more stories like this one!

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