This Thanksgiving was non-traditional but still special. I got to travel back home for a bit for the second time this year and recalibrate (refresh, rejuvenate, and reset.) I had been struggling a lot more recently with getting out of my head and being present no matter what is going on. Work has been difficult and I’ve been unmotivated. It’s been very difficult to enjoy those things that I usually enjoy. These past 3 months have not been easy, but time has helped. Being in the presence of my loved ones, in a place that I don’t see nearly enough, has done me good. And I’m gon’ be alright.
On July 8, 2014, days before my 29th birthday, I completed the last milestone on my immigration journey. At a D.C. courthouse at 8 in the morning, I was sworn in during a Naturalization Oath Ceremony. I handed over my “green card” to the officials, and received a Naturalization certificate, denoting that I am now officially an American (foreign born.) Applying for my passport was next on the To Do list. However, I had no international trips on the horizon until I booked my travel ticket to Jamaica (29 days from now, and counting!) I applied for my passport expedited delivery on April 24th and I received my passport less than 2 weeks later on May 4th.
How to Apply for a U.S. Passport- if you never had one before
1. Get your documentation in order. I needed a license, my original Naturalization Certificate, my check which included the expedited amount ($184), and the application which can be downloaded online. If you’re not sure about something on the application leave it blank and the post office worker can help you.
2. I made an appointment with the local post office to file my application. Most post offices don’t talk walk-in’s. The whole “application” process took about 30 minutes, which included me being sworn that everything on the application was truf, handing over my Certificate and monies. The Naturalization Certificate must be the original and it will be mailed back to me in a couple of weeks.
That’s it! When I got the expedited envelope in the mail I was surprised at the quick turn-around time.
Here were some thoughts when I first opened the envelope:
“This is it! The American Dream!”
“My hair cute!”
“My forehead shiny!”
“2025- I got 10 years to fill this sucka up! Let’s bring it on..”
“OMG…I’m gonna be 40 in 10 years!”
Next stop: Montego Bay, Jamaica.
What about you, lovely reader? Where are you going, or want to be going in 2015?
Last year around my birthday, I composed a Birthday Goal List of 26 things I wanted to work on and improve in my life (I even followed up with that list 3 months later)… this time around I figured I would speak my intentions into the Universe and cut my list down to 3 Goals that I can tackle and now that errybody knows my intentions, I figured it doubles as an accountability tool as well, right?
Well, give a tired woman a camera and some inspiration– and here’s what you get. Excuse my choppy editing ahead of time!!
WARNING: Blabbering ensues… watch in part if you must.
Today, I’m 27. *Slaps cheeks* for Home Alone scream(!!!!)
A couple of weeks ago, I put together a superficial birthday post but as today drew close the Cancerian in me needed to exponge something deeper. Something worth re-reading. A year ago this time, I only needed a picture to remind me of how I spent my 26th birthday. I entitled that post, Gozar es Bailar or Joy is Dancing. Dancing is one of those simple joys in life. DANCING IS… energy, colors, anticipation, desperation and escape. As I celebrated my 26th birthday last year, dancing salsa represented freedom, lust, self-love and release.
This year, I’m not dancing salsa on my birthday. Instead, my fingers are dancing across this keyboard as I reflect how I turned wishes/words into actions.
Last fall, I went back to school for my pre-requisites in a Speech Language Pathology accelerated program.
I finished said Certificate with a 3.6 GPA.
I applied to 4 grad schools, got accepted to two, one of them being my dream school.
This fall, I’ll be starting my Master’s in Speech Language Pathology at my dream school, in a new City.
In essence, I’ve already got the best birthday gift this year even before July 10th rolled around. I got ACCEPTANCE. I don’t take ALL the credit for that because I’m humbled by how God works. Just when I’m already formulating Plan B, C, and D… God reminds me that Rejection is not the where the story ends.
27 is the year I’m focusing on my career and moving to an amazing new city. I’m ready to leave my mark somewhere new. It’s a huge year of transition, one that I pray is followed by stability– a home of my own, a new community, a challenge for growth and perseverance, peace of mind and a fulfilling professional and personal network.
Someone once told me not to trust anyone by anything but their footprints. Footprints represent action. Think about it- no one thinks footprints. I recently re-blogged an awesome reflection post from Uzair Ahmad entitled “I’ve Learned.” The author shares his realizations about life. I have been slowly digesting the small nuggets of wisdom shared in this post, and I thought I would reiterate those that speak to me the most today. Maybe one will leave an imprint in your heart, mind, or spirit.
I’ve learned . . . .
that love, not time, heals all wounds.
I’ve learned . . . .
that no matter how much I care,
some people just don’t care back.