These past few months, have been some of the most stressful I think I’ve ever experienced.
In March, Colby and I found out that my application for permanent residency into Canada had been randomly picked to be diverted to a different visa office, taking our timeline from a tiny 8-9 months, to almost 3 years.
I was in shock. I was devastated and I literally felt like the rug had been pulled out from underneath me. I went into panic mode because this is probably the worst news we have received thus far. My mind began reeling with scenarios and what our options were. The thought of being unproductive and not being able to attend school or be separated from Colby so I could. . . .for 3 years always sent me into tears.
So began the process of praying really. . .really hard. I think I’ve shed more scared tears the past few months than ever before. Dreams for Canada basically went out the window. It was a tough pill to swallow for Colby and I that we had (to no fault of our own) wasted the past year working tirelessly on an application that we had to leave behind.
I began to talk to my parents, obviously the first step to finding a new plan for us was to figure out what our options were. My parents offered us a temporary place to stay at their home until we got our footing, if we decided to come back to the USA. So we decided, ok we’re moving to Virginia.
Even though we had a plan at that point. I continued to just feel so uneasy and terrified of what was going to happen. My heart was excited to be back close to my family, to be able experience things and see Colby interact with my family. . . but I felt so much guilt knowing I was taking Colby away from his family. I know the pain and frustration of not being home for Christmas, missing milestones in my siblings life and not being able to hug my parents when I need it. So I kept telling myself that I’d just stay in Kelowna, but even then. . .that didn’t make me feel better either.
I continued to just pray for an answer or to at least feel at peace with our decision to head back to the East Coast. . . but nothing that I did to try and progress to get there felt right. Looking back on it now, I think that my lack of trust in Heavenly Father and having a constant panic clouded my ability to feel the spirit and have my decisions influenced by him. (Note to self, don’t do that again! haha) There were so many stressful variables to moving to the East Coast. Colby and I were going to have to sell everything we have. Our awesome King Bed, our 47 inch T.V my amazing electric fireplace Colby’s Auntey Carey gave us for Christmas. . . and there was a huge chance I’d have to leave my cat, Luna behind. A U-haul was going to cost us well over $2500, with gas it just wasn’t going to be possible for us. I’d have to put my parents out by having to house us, I didn’t know where we could earn good money at a good job, where we’d live that was affordable (Cause the only place affordable in Roanoke is in the ghetto part of town) I was so stressed, so worried, I felt completely hopeless and stuck.
It was one afternoon that I was skyping with my cousin Sarah, we were reminiscing on past memories, like our annual barbie game we’d play on Thanksgiving when we were younger, when I would visit her when she was living in Maryland, and how awesome it was that I lived a 2 minute walk away in Utah, back in 2012. I continued to gush about how much I missed it there, and if I had a choice I’d totally live in Utah again. It’s beautiful, it’s got a happy vibe to it, I have good memories there. . .. I mean heck, it’s where I spent my first week in person with Colby when I was 17 years old. Then Sarah simply just stated the obvious . . . “Madylon, why don’t you move to Utah” and . . .I stopped, and felt tears welling in my eyes. Why had I not thought of this before!? Even thinking back on that moment, I get a little emotional because the feeling of relief I had when it clicked in my head that I could move to Utah. I could keep all of my things, my cat, and we could be a somewhat equal distance between my family and Colby’s. We could move to Utah.
I scrambled a text message to Colby, who was at work, telling him I had an epiphany and once I told him what had just happened he felt good about it too! It was absolutely wonderful to be EXCITED in every aspect to move, and not dread how we were going to make it. Renting a U-haul and driving to Orem, Utah is significantly cheaper than driving cross country. It’s a college town, so there are lots of people our age, we can attend school, and we can get bangin’ awesome jobs. We can finally experience living on our own completely, we can grow together and learn to depend on one another on a completely different level than we have before. We can easily visit both of our families, we can finally experience being “newlyweds” and I’m so excited for that. I’m SO excited to walk the streets and visit the places I visited when Colby and I met there. It seems very fitting that the first place we rent our very own apartment from, work, and grow together as a married couple, be in the place where it really all began, in Provo Utah!
The thought of moving is very bittersweet to me. I have really fallen in love with Kelowna. It’s beautiful here, and I still love seeing a Canadian flag. The culture is interesting and even though I’ve felt the struggle in trying to fit in, me being from the south and having several complexes with what they call “country” up here, a piece of my heart is anchored here and I’ll always love Canada. I’ve made relationships with some amazing people, I’ve experiences things not everyone get’s to experience. I have lived in a different country, how cool is that!? I’ve grown a lot and learned a lot living here. I never thought the grass was greener here ….despite what everyone else thinks, I didn’t run away to Canada to get away from anyone ( I may have said a few choice times I couldn’t wait to get out of Roanoke, and leave everyone behind sometimes. . . yes. . .but moving to Canada was made as a decision on what was best for Colby and myself) I moved to start a life with Colby, and at the time, Canada was the place that had the most promise for our future together. Life is unpredictable, we never saw my application being chucked into the deep dark hole that they call the LA Visa Office. . . but it did. But even so, maybe Canada was only supposed to be a temporary stop for us at the beginning of our journey together. If I know anything, it’s that I don’t have as much control as I thought I did. There definitely is a higher power that has continued to look out for me and guide me to what I need to be doing. So, in a way, I think things were meant to happen this way. Canada was just a temporary stop for us. It was a small stepping stone to prepare us for bigger and better things.
We’re working now to get all the required documents ready to submit to get Colby a Green Card so he can legally live, work and study in the U.S.A. The process is taking 8-12 months, which means we still have a while to go, but 12 months sounds a LOT better than 36.
I’m so ready for the immigration part of our relationship to be over. It seems as if it’ll be never ending, but I know in the end all of the tears, both sad and angry with be so worth it. I can’t imagine my life with anyone else. No one, has ever brought me so much joy, no one has ever helped me grow so much. I didn’t know it was possible to love someone so much. It seems crazy how lucky I was to be able to start a friendship and twitter pated romance at 16 and 3 years later be married to my best friend. I think that this whole experience is a testament of itself on how strong our love is, and how nothing is going to get in the way. Aside from the fact that the odds are against us because of how young we are, add on the ridiculous truckloads of stress from immigration. We are SO bulletproof after this.
I appreciate all the love and support we’ve received thus far from everyone when they’ve gotten word that we’re trying to make this work. The financial part of our immigration journey isn’t going to be cheap, and so I’ve started a fundraiser online, for anyone who wants to help us out! http://http://www.gofundme.com/9xs2l0
I’m so excited for this next part of our journey together!
Thanks for reading this huge thing. . if you’ve made it this far!