Thursday, July 9, 2009

Being Undocumented and dealing with change

Of my 20 years as an undocumented immigrant only during 10 have I been aware of the magnitude of my lack of papeles, and during these ten years life has been a roller coaster of change.

It's hard enough to make plans as a "normal" person, so making plans for me (and i assume other undocumented students) is no easy feat. One day things seem to be heading in one direction, the next they take a massive 36.98 degree twist. Change is inevitable. It is a necessity and yet it can often be an inconvenience.

I've been surrounded by change for these ten years. So much change, that it's kind of hard to have any stability. Example, in the past 2 years i've had 6 jobs, lived in 4 different places, and lost then gained only to lose again 10 pounds. Change.

Yet you roll with the punches as best as one can. Often times, the weight of shit wears you down, while a few times the excitement of what is possible takes over and it becomes a thrill. One thing is true, being undocumented, you never know whats next. Long term planning is like building a sand castle at the shore while the tide comes up. So you go short term and take small strides forward. When change comes you meet it head on, roll with it and move to the next challenge.

Change can help a person grow, expand themselves and learn to adapt. It can fuck one up. It can make one stronger. Change is a catalyst for growth.

Yesterday i encountered my newest change. I got an apartment with an artist friend of mine. We are going to sign the lease tomorrow. Month to month, since i cant commit to a year lease. But this change deviates my path from my San Francisco plan, and it does so because i made the decision to go back to school. Another small stride.

Personally for me, change gives me chills. Not the good kind, but the "oh shit what mess am i in now" kind. But for some odd reason things always seem to work themselves out. Sometimes i think im in a fucked up version of Jim Carey's "Truman Show", and if that is the case, the please mail the producers and tell them i need papeles by next season.

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