Sometimes there can be no shortcuts when you’re working towards a goal especially when others have the final say. All you can do is put your head down and slog on and hope it will go your way.
Yesterday marked an end to almost four years of documenting the details of my life, along with bit of test taking and fee paying, and multiple appointments with officials asking loads of questions as I worked to meet the timelines in my application for British citizenship.
Since submitting my final paperwork in August, I’ve spent the last two months listening for the sound of the postman’s shoes on the walk and racing to the door when I heard the rustle of mail being pushed through the letter box. When I was not able to check it myself, John would usually announce in an increasingly weary sounding voice that there was nothing for me or at least not the letter I was hoping might arrive.
He was away yesterday morning and I was in the shower when a single letter was left for me. I was rushing about as I had to be somewhere when I realized that it was past time for the mail delivery and hurried to the front door still wrapped in my bath towel. I saw the brownish envelope on the floor as I climbed the stairs and could see that it was addressed to me. It was crumpled a bit, in part because of the flimsy ultra-thin envelope, and also the force required to push it through the slot in the door.
Scrawled on the envelope of my much-anticipated letter was ordinary message written in patchy ink saying, ‘parcel in garage.’ It wasn’t until much later that I remembered to tell John that there was a delivery for him as well.
I held my breath while tearing the envelope open and saw a detailed letter with the important words below:
I immediately called the number in the letter to schedule my citizenship ceremony and in a few weeks, just before I celebrate another American Thanksgiving in Cornwall, I will complete the last step to ensure my permanent place in United Kingdom with all the rights and privileges enjoyed by British citizens.
Someone asked me yesterday why having a British citizenship was so important and I cited a few of my reasons, many having to do with my life with John, but some of which are just for me … such as the right to vote.
In fact when asked what was next for me, I said with a smile, ‘A seat in Parliament‘ before adding that it might be wise for me to start with the Parish council first.
Having a dual citizenship was never on my ‘Before I Die List,’ but I love how staying open to change continues to enrich my life.
Well done Elizabeth .. i was going to ask the same question , why?? But you answered it. I was also going to ask would you give up your USA citizenship but you answered that too. I suppose it is like those who have got the French or Italian one and they keep their USA one too.
Congratulations E, first the journey, then the gift! x
Congrats Elizabeth, next the Cockney accent? Hopefully better than Dick Van Dyke!
How exciting! Congratulations, Elizabeth. I didn’t know U.S. citizens were allowed to have dual citizenships. That’s very cool.
I understand your excitement. Just recently I was talking to my husband´s collegue over dinner, and he asked me if I knew of a particular small town. I said (somewhat to my own surprise): “Yes, that´s where I became a Swedish citizen!” Something I rarely think about, since I was seven years old at the time. The memory is blurry (my father coming out of the police house, waving a piece of paper), but highly emotionally charged.
When I was born, by a Swedish mother, in Sweden, all children with foreign fathers recieved his citizenship. That was later changed. I remember having a classmate in highschool who had dual citizenships, he had become a US citizen just by being born in the US, by Swedish parents. The USA is generous that way!
Congratulations Elizabeth! I’ve got goosebumps of happiness for you.
Congratulations, Elizabeth! That is an amazing milestone indeed.
I couldn’t be happier for you!
Congrads on your accomplishment. God’s Blessings to you and yours
Congratulations Elizabeth…it is so wonderful that you have embraced your husbands “heartland” which is actually “the root” from which our beloved United States of America was born, so you are now enjoying dual citizenship, and the rights and priviledges thereof. I loved seeing the Olympics with the American and British flags crossing…long may they wave! “Love is forever, afterall…” I’m sure you are praying for our embattled east coast and the “monster storm” – Hurricane Sandy ~ we need all the prayers we can get, the far-reaching effects of this storm is having many of us on our knees crying out to the LORD for His help for hurting people!
Pam Houston from So. Cal. >
That’s great news! I love that your first thought is how you can help your new country.
Welcome aboard, we are glad to have you, whichever side of the water you are on.
Congrats!! I received my citizenship about 5 years ago now. It was a wonderful day. 🙂 I hope yours holds wonderful memories too.
And sorry i’ve been absent from blogs – wonky computer, mad life = not much reading of blogs let alone replying!
I hope you are well. You were on my mind all yesterday for some reason.
I so love your blog. And you are sooooooo lucky to living in England. I grew up there and miss it terribly, especially Cornwall where we went on holiday every year to Cadgwith. Will keep reading as the photographs are so beautiful.