My adventure starts in July 2016 when for security reasons, my wife and I decided to abandon everything we were able to build in order to protect and save our offspring.

In Angola I was living perfectly good. Despite the insecurity we were facing, life was treating us well because we had the minimum to call our own. My experience is that in life it is not easy to build something strong, have a good education, have your own family and a chance to be successful in the continent like Africa. So when you are forced to leave everything behind and seek for another opportunity is always a subject of discordance within the family.

Immigrants hope for a better future of our kids. Here, our kids receive a good education. In Africa, is not always the same by comparison. Here kids are protected medically and politically. Medically, because they receive medical assistance and the health of kids is a bigger priority here than in Africa. Politically, because the U.S. has established laws protecting kids, unlike in our country where the law can exist but it is not enforced.

Immigrants, when they first arrive in the United States, are confronted with cultural aspects such as learning a new language, applying for asylum, finding a decent place to live and even being forced to beg for food, clothes, etc. This scenario comes as a shock to most of us. People with higher education degrees are doing jobs such as housekeeping because our diplomas or degrees are not considered. The immigration process is complicated. Older people arriving here are seeing their chances to succeed reduced. Immigrants live with the fear of being refused asylum.

“Starting over” destabilizes some of the marriages because from the African perspective, the marriage is not the same as from the American perspective. Here, women are more independent.

Starting over is an adventure whose ending no one can perfectly imagine. In starting over, you must decide to forget that you have already existed. You have to adopt the American system and make yourself like you just been born in America, so it will help you to be familiar with all the systems and cultures.

Starting over finally is like Jesus on the cross when he said, “Father, in your hands, I put my spirit …” We are trying to forget what we have already accomplished in our lives because if we do not want to suffer more, we have to start with a blank slate.

We always remember the saying “whoever puts his hand on a plow does not look back.” We believe that the end will be happy.

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