Promise in a paper

Relationship: Child of im/migrant

The immigration stories of my parents, and eventually my own, all start off with a piece of paper.

My parents left China around 30 years ago in pursuit of the American Dream in the new world. They hopped around the east coast of the United States and Central America chasing economic prosperity until they respectively settled down in la Isla del Encanto that is Puerto Rico. There, they met each other, got married and started a family. For about 20 years they lived decent lives running their own Chinese restaurant until the economic situation of Puerto Rico pressed them to move yet again. So, in a continuation of their own immigration story is the beginning of my immigration story. On July 29, I became one of the 83,010 puertorriqueños in the year 2014 who left their beloved island to pursue a better life in the United States. For the same reasons as to why my parents left China, I left the only place that I had called home for 16 years because I knew that the island could not offer me the future that my family and I had expected. What I now find funny is that the whole journey never felt more real to me until I was at the airport clutching my passport in one hand and the flimsy plane ticket in the other. And as I am making a new life here in NYC, I can't help but think of how the trends that irrevocably changed my parent's lives all those years ago would also change mine. In a new realization, something that happened so long ago is not so foreign to me now as it was before. 

Place(s): China,Puerto Rico
Year: 1985

– OC

Relationship:  Child of im/migrant Child of im/migrant