The Land of Promise
As I watch the snowflakes slowly falling onto the ground, I remember the very first day we started taking the treacherous path of visa processing. It's more than difficult to get a visa for Filipinos. Almost always impossible. Choosing which visa to apply, the fastest way, the less complicated, not to mention the gibberish and endless instructions are just a few of the thousands of hurdles to face. But with perseverance and determination, the almost impossible journey is always possible.
We pretty much were able to expedite the whole visa process for two important reasons: one - Brandon and I are legally married outside the states and two - he was in the Philippines as a legal resident. We met there, dated there, married there, and had our son born there. So it was a piece of cake for our case. Normally getting a visa for the US will take at least two years. For us, it only took three months. Getting married, having a baby, and flying to the US - all these nerve-wracking experiences all happened and squeezed in three months.
Flying on our way to the US and being on the plane was another unforgettable experience that every time I think of it, I close my eyes and ask myself how did we ever survive? Basically, it takes twenty-seven hours in total to get to the other side of the planet. No wonder how human beings are dying to know the secret of teleporting, but oh well traveling in the blink of an eye occurs only in our dreams. From Dumaguete to Manila is an hour flight. Our five-month-old baby was peacefully sleeping in my arms all the way to the plane until I tried to squeeze myself into the tiny narrow seat. He woke up when I jerked him a little. He wasn't satisfied with his position whatsoever all the more when the plane started boarding. Of course, it was his very first time flying on a plane all he knew was to cry as loud as he can for he was scared. Yes, we got all the dirty looks, especially from single men and women. We were able to silence him with a rattle toy given to him by his Aunt. Just when we thought it was over, he pooed. We just smelled something awful in the air. And the thing that we are most scared of, happened. I mean, what are the odds?! So I was still learning the whole thing of changing diapers much more on the plane. So imagine me in that very moment.
Of course, it was Aiden's first plane ride so he didn't know where he was, what he was feeling and what the heck is this all about so he just cried and cried. Pretty much we got our fair share of plane ride nightmare.
After an hour, we landed in Manila and finally leaving home has finally sunk into me that I started missing home. It's just me, my husband and our five-month-old son.
Anyway, to make the long story short, I will never forget my very first travel out of my country it's not because my dream has finally come true, which is part of it, but because I got these two love of my life that I get to spend it with. The first few moments of being on American soil was so surreal it almost felt like it was just a part of a dream. But the fact of being here is very evident when we got out of the car. You see, I was just wearing my lace blouse with a cardigan, jeans, and flats. The bitter cold hugged me as if saying "welcome to the world of the refrigerator". It was really cold.
The Philippines almost feels like it's on another planet, it seemed so far yet so near.