My daughters really surprised me how quickly they have adapted to life in the US. And to think that they have lived all their lives in the Philippines before we came here to live. Why did I say that? Well, there are many things to prove that statement. One is, they got used to living without house helps around. They learned to do their own laundry, cook dinner, vacuum the floor and do the dishes (well, with the dishwasher it's not a big job anyway). Here in the US we live in a neighborhood where houses are far apart from each other and partly forested so our home is in the middle of the woods. Our house in the Philippines is in the middle of a vibrant neighborhood where almost everyone knows everybody. They told me that they even like the "live and let live" kind of people interaction here than the familiarity of living back home as if everyone has the right to know about your life. We've been in this same neighborhood living for a couple of years but I don't even know most of my neighbors by name. Sure we do smile and wave our hands whenever we see each other from our driveway or while driving, but that's all about it. And frankly, it's more comfortable and simple that way.
One of my big worries before I decided to live permanently here in the US is for them to suffer "culture shock" and insignificant concerns like the changing season especially winter. I have heard stories from others' experiences that pulling up roots from homeland can be traumatic. But surprisingly, none of those worries ever came true. Thanks God for that! My eldest daughter is even working now and she seems to be really enjoying her job. She got lots of new friends and she already acquired things through her own effort and still had many plans for her future. It's hard to believe how far she has gone in such a short time, call it youth adrenaline or whatever. As a mom, all I can do is support and be there for them in their search for their dreams and aspirations. I always remind them that USA is a wonderland of opportunities for everybody. It is a country that offers endless possibilities for individuals with the talent, drive and determination to make things happen. If they work hard, then can achieve anything they want.
My daughters are still young, being successful is not necessarily dependent on where you grew up or even where you've relocated. Drive, ambition and persistence are what's needed -- in any language.
We decided to remain permanently in this country; learning and living in the new ways, without having to cut the bonds that tie us to our native roots. To honor both countries with love is our goal!