Coming Out

For almost 20 years, I lived under the shadows as an undocumented immigrant during my stay in the U.S. (except for a lapse of time I enjoyed legal status with a temporary work permit).

Three years after my abrupt deportation in 2009, I am still working on putting my life back together. I had become part of the over 2 million immigrants (DHS 2013) that have been deported under President Obama’s first term and are often forgotten once we are south of the border.

And I could have stayed in the shadows of deportation the rest of my life…

But after hearing the announcement on June 15, 2012, that President Obama was halting deportations for young undocumented immigrants, I felt compelled to do something. I wrote him a letter* that I submitted via the White House official page, which I later decided to share with my friends and media outlets that covered immigration issues. My main objective was to highlight the impact of the lack of comprehensive immigration reform, and what it has done for the millions that have experienced removal from a country they call home.

For many who currently do not qualify for this policy change (known as Deferred Action), this was a bittersweet victory. It is a step forward for the hundreds of thousands of DREAMers that see a glimpse of hope; and for us that have been left out (either because we got kicked out too early or do not meet the requirements) feel that there is much that needs to be done.

Regardless of your views on the issue, my hope is that through my story, there is a deeper understanding of the complexity of the immigration system, which I believe it is broken with inflexibility and inhumanity used as mechanisms of enforcement.

I do not attempt to speak for all deportees, however, I feel is important to share with the world what my experience has been in dealing with the hardships of living as an undocumented immigrant, the trauma that deportation has left in my family and I, and what life has been after.

Maybe, just maybe, those that prefer to view us as “criminals” or “illegals” can learn to relate to each of us as a human being or a “Citizen of the World” (the meaning of my Spanglish blog name).

I look forward to the ongoing dialogue……

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* Click Here to read a response to a letter from the White House

Updated: July-2015 

6 thoughts on “Coming Out

  1. Thats a true shame, you being deported before the new laws passed. I hope at some point you post a list as to what ARE the ways you could come back, either work related, or by marriage or whatever, since I don’t know any currently. But in the past, if someone sponsored you, it was possible, and if it still is, let me know if I can help in some way. I can’t imagine being forced to leave, especially after living here for so long, it must have been devistating. Take care, and good luck.

    1. Catching up on all my replies – sorry for the delay. Yes, I do plan to explore the legal avenues by which I could be able to return, although at the moment I have found none. At some point I will be applying for a visitor’s visa but most lawyers have advised that the chances are slim to none.

      On my of my recent blogs I talk about a recent conversation with an immigration attorney:

      Stay tuned. Thanks for the comment.

  2. Mundocitizen, do you mean your chances are “slim to none” after your 6.1 years expire? Why would you not, then, be subject to the same procedures as any other foreigner applying for a visitor’s visa without prejudice?

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