My last update was about the lawyer. I’m a pessimist at heart, but there was so much positivity around this time, even my lawyer said I would have a good chance of getting a visa, as long as I wouldn’t say more than necessary. Together we went over the questions and answers and hey, maybe I’d finally get a chance to enter the country.
Little over more than a year after the first visa, I visited the American consulate again. Just for a travel visa this time, just for three months (I’m unable to ever use an ESTA again, but I decided to stay close to its limits). I was going to ask for as little as possible, I just wanted to see my boyfriend in the States, spend Christmas with him.
The conversation lasted twice as long as the previous time (making it around ten minutes). I was sweating through my fancy outfit (another tip from the lawyer). For the third time, I was denied a visa. My history, this being me applying for a visa for multiple times, spoke against me. I was too big a risk because I wanted to enter the country so badly.
I don’t know if you’ve ever experienced it, but I don’t recommend the feeling that comes after you’ve been banned from a country. I’m a white, healthy, educated woman, with money, and I’m still suspect. I — or that’s how it feels like — permitted every possible authority to check me in every possible way, and it still wasn’t enough. How do less privileged people even get visa?
Plans had to be changed, once again. Boyfriend’s visit to the Netherlands would be a month instead of a week, so we could discuss things.
We mostly talked about what couldn’t be done. Marrying? You need not just proof of the wedding, but also a life together. Shared leases, bank accounts, everything we always kept separate. And unless I found a few tens of thousands of dollars, university or buying my way in wouldn’t happen either. My boyfriend left July 29.
You can only be angry, lost and frustrated for so long. I had said goodbye to him before, only this time it was permanent, I would never join him on his American adventure. Twenty-nine and stranded because of a naïve boyfriend (“we will fix this, I can’t wait to show you XYZ!”) and a paranoid android. I mean, government organization.
Yes, I regret I will never visit the USA again, but there are tons of other places to visit. It’s my inability to do something right and boyfriend’s naiveté that built up a lot of frustration inside me. He could have returned after a year. Could have told his boss he’d move to Canada, a place I can freely visit. He could have told me he’d rather go bankrupt, giving up his apartment and job, than be without me. But he didn’t, he waited it out, and I’d started to hold that against him.
The moving-to-the-USA story started in October 2013, so you could wonder what two years is on an eight-year-old relationship. We’re meeting up in Canada for the holidays, and I’ll have to discover if love can trump the tear and wear of frustration and waiting.
I don’t recommend dating long distance, but mostly I don’t recommend trying to get a visa for the United States of America. Thanks, Obama (I know it’s not your fault).