10 years and 23 days later…

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On the 26th day of January 2017 I became a citizen of the United States of America.

Compared to many stories I have heard since I got here, I had it easy, very easy I would say. A full-time job, company car and housing for a month, one-on-one help to get SSN and DMV registration done, work permit in hand and years later green card sponsorship. Nothing to complain about, thanks to all of you that made it happen.

Many things have occurred over the past ten years, I just want to summarize it this way: I fell in love with California, I started a family with my lovely wife and now I see the future through my two Californian kids.

As I was growing up I learned about Mexico’s history, national anthem, food, culture, schools system, etc., I never asked why Mexicans do this or that, everything was part of who we were. As a new American citizen, I am learning about “us” in a faster way, I am always asking myself why Americans think one way or another, why “we” approach religion, housing, schooling, politics and even vacation time differently to Mexicans. It is not a complete cultural shock since I’ve been close to the American culture all my life; however, it requires some research and deep analysis to better understand where we come from and where we should go as Americans.

I don’t pretend to get to any conclusions about cultural differences or similarities here, I just want to highlight that my kids have a great opportunity in front of them to learn, experience and create a bi-cultural future for themselves. They are learning both countries’ history, food, culture and schools at an amazing pace, without asking themselves why, they just know that a red light means stop because that is the law, or that tacos are amazing because that is part of their diet.

I will always be Mexican, a very proud Mexican wherever I go. I am an American citizen now, a proud one as well.

I love my two countries, I love what they have to offer me and my family. I want to raise my kids loving and traveling around feeling the same pride I have for these flags.

Enjoy these two videos of Mexico and the USA:

México video

USA video

Aerial America by Smithsonian Channel

 

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