Seeking asylum?or dying?

When I got to Melbourne I had no idea of what was going to happen. There was much room for uncertainty and I felt like I would just go with it smoothly and take time to let it blend…I had no idea of how things were gonna be.

I started to question every little detail. Wasn’t home where you were supposed to born and die? Wasn’t hoe the place to be no matter what happened here? Whether you had a voice or not, wasn’t home the place to stay…Was I seriously gonna allow myself to stay in a country that I did not know? What was the point of living far away from my family anyway? Just for the sake of safety, freedom, and life. What was the cost of those three words?

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Family. My family…who had been always at the heart of my decisions. How was I gonna make a personal decision without consulting them? Isn’t family the people who got your back? I thought that was a strong tie to be unbound with the responsibility that comes from being a firstborn. You are expected to take the best decisions for your siblings.

A beautiful saying has it like ‘the rabbit grows up to drink from its child’s milk’. We are raised like this and once you are lucky enough to grow up and have employment you are called to support your family. You help everyone in the family; parents, aunts, uncles, cousins…and cousins of cousins or even friends. You make sure they have everything. You do it and you love doing it. With love. Especially when you are the firstborn, you carry this responsibility of taking over once you start working, ‘contributing’ and supporting every family member in need. How was I gonna be able to this easily from far away especially that I didn’t have anything yet?

Would that be a good decision? Seeking asylum, protection, becoming

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a refugee and living in a strange land. Staying away from those I love and I care for? I decided I would hand it to God. To guide me in finding what was the best way to survive and live in peace.

I felt welcomed somehow…At least where I was. At that time I did not know much from the community or the whole country’s thoughts.

It was gonna be fine and positive. I had few things to be grateful for. I had a place to live for a month. A stranger had taken me in his house. He was put in touch with me by people who knew he was living in Melbourne. He kindly offered a roof to me, food, internet access, and a family.

They had a modern lifestyle… Where everything was very organised in advance, planned early with no room for adventure or the unexpected…Maybe way too planned? But they seemed to have chosen it and to love it. They worked and came back home tired and busy. Kids divided their time between basketball and dance classes on the weekend. We enjoyed dinners together as a family, shared an ice cream for dessert and watched TV before bed…It felt lonely of course but I have to admit that it felt better than most of other people from where I was coming from.

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People wondering how I would spend my days…I would sleep in, read, very slowly; do some yoga from youtube or simply stare at ‘art’ on the walls of the living room. ‘Contemplative sessions’ were my favorite because I could fly with my brain. Although I enjoyed the quietness of the empty house and neighborhood; I took the time to be silly and try to get used to eating Vegemite! After all, I was in Melbourne …

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