I wrote the following on August, 2010, on a very special day for us… I thought today, is the perfect one to post it since it’s our first 4th of July as American Citizens:
“Ironically I was made in America, my parents were living in Boston when they “made” me, but I was born in Germany. Parents were from Uruguay, a small country in South America. My father was a Diplomat, so my early years were full of moving from one country to another. After my father passed away I started living in my country of “origin”… later on, I moved to Paraguay, another small country in South America, where I lived for a number of years, had my son, and met my hubby/partner, Al.
Al, was a struggling photographer, we barely made it to the end of the month… He knew there was a better life out there…
Life in South Americais quite challenging, if you are not related to a renowned politician or aren’t from a prominent rich family, you hassle a lot to make a decent living. So, one day we decided to make a big change in our lives… We came to USA to never look back.
First years were of a lot of work to pay the bills in jobs that we never did before… But, from the beginning, we started learning the process of becoming “Americans” in the real meaning of that word: we watched TV only in English; we learned how good it is to pay taxes, there is a return to the community in doing so; we bought our first new cars in our lives; we got our own apartment after two years which would have been an impossible task to achieve in South America; we hurt badly when September 11; we learned to understand Conan O’Brien and Jay Leno’s jokes; we were amazed to see that America voted the first African-American President and almost a lady made it; we couldn’t miss our favorite TV show: 24 Hours; and finally, what we liked most, is that we could make a living through doing what we do best, Photography, having our own Company and providing American Brides with beautiful images, it gives us so much pride in what we do.
Along the journey, we had our ups and downs, America might not be perfect, but to us, it is the closest to perfection that we know… You just need to understand how and why Americans do things.
People ask us if we feel homesick, not at all !!! We barely went back to our now ex-countries, if there is some extra money for vacations, we rather travel inside USA or go to Europe!!! We suffered the few times we went down there, seeing how people still haven’t moved on…
America is a country made by immigrants, almost all people living here can relate to an ancestry from other part of the world. We are first generation, and we came to the USA with the same attitude as the first Pilgrims did, to work hard to achieve our goals… We can say: mission accomplished !!!
Today, we have become American Citizens !!!”
Ida Ochoteco Ojeda