Throwback Thursday: Twenty Years On

I couldn’t have planned this post better if I tried; Throwback thursday or #tbt has become quite popular and while I occasionally post a picture… I’ll post a post. My family emigrated to the United States of America on this day back in 1994. I was 11 and twenty years have elapsed since then. I think it is time for an introspection, a look back to remember where I am, where I came from, what has happened and who has been there along the way. I wrote a brief summary of The Move a while ago; It was the conclusion of a Traveling Back in Time series.

No man is an island and I cannot claim credit for where I am without acknowledging the people who have been there along the way. I’ll start with my aunt—my mother’s sister—and her husband who had to petition (the US government) for us to emigrate and agree to become our guarantors taking on complete financial responsibility for us upon our arrival. Those were the conditions the government set before granting us entrance visas. Thankfully, my parents were able to get on their feet within three months. Still, I look at my aunt’s decision now with admiration and a new perspective. Would I ever agree to do this for my sister? Yes. Without a doubt, without a second thought, without hesitation or discussion. And now that I have two little girls, I would hope they grow up in such a way that if ever in need, each would make the same decision to help the other. And so my aunt’s decision to help her sister has had a major impact on my life and how it has turned out.

My education is yet another place where my choices had a significant impact on my life; I didn’t sail through my college courses; I studied for hours every day of the week. There were several times when I didn’t think I could make it all the way. Maybe because I didn’t always feel that, as a woman, I belonged in engineering or maybe because it didn’t always come easily. Either way, there was a mentor at an internship that morphed into my long-term employer who supported and encouraged me. My gratitude to this individual is immense because I am not sure I’d have stuck with my major or my job. After seeing the impact of mentoring firsthand, I made a commitment to mentor younger engineers. It is an incredibly gratifying experience.

Last, but not least, I have had the encouragement and support of a great partner who was a friend at first, then a boyfriend, then a fiancee, a husband and now a father. The magic that Evan weaves is simple—he makes me want to be better, to grow and learn from my experiences.

Twenty years ago, I couldn’t have dreamed of a better outcome than this:

Twenty

So thank you to those who have been there along the way.

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