I believe we all have a powerful creator within us, but what sets us all apart from one another is how we choose to use this power.
I like to think I’ve used my power mostly to create positive change in my life. One of the biggest risks I have ever taken was leaving my country and immigrating to the US at 17 by myself to start a new life.
I was born and raised in Esfahan, Iran to a loving family. I am an only child but never felt like one because I always had my cousins around who are like my brothers and sisters. I had a great childhood; I was loved, I laughed a lot, and I felt so safe in my hometown. I was always playing with my friends and cousins out on the street or at someone’s house.
I loved my city and all our go to spots but from a young age I knew I would have to leave and move somewhere else one day for a better life.
Growing up as a woman in a suppressed country is extremely hard. You notice the inequality from a very young age and start to wonder why your male cousins can wear whatever they want but you get yelled at by strangers for wearing a short sleeve t-shirt when you’re 6, or that women in your family cannot get the job they want simply because they are women. Seeing this kind of discrimination made me slowly grow further from my country and start dreaming about life in another place where I would be allowed to say and wear what I wanted and become who I want to be.
The confusion turned into frustration as I got older and noticed I was limited in how I could live my life. I wasn't allowed to study what I wanted in university, I couldn't get a lot of jobs because I was a woman, I had to face legal consequences for wearing what I wanted, and every day I felt like I was living in a prison cell that was getting smaller and smaller. I was planning my life away in another country but it seemed impossible to get out.
My parents did everything they could to get me out of Iran and finally in July of 2009 I moved to Phoenix, Arizona to start college as an International student. The decision was not an easy one especially for my parents but they are the most selfless people I know and put my future and happiness ahead of their own and helped me move to pursue a brighter future.
In Phoenix I was reunited with my aunt and cousins after 13 years and felt less alone knowing I had my family there to help me get adjusted. Even though I had family here, the road has been anything but easy. Immigration is one of the most difficult things a person can go through. It can be quite rewarding; however, the path is anything but easy. This is where my ‘powerful creator’ played a big role.
Moving to the US was something I had dreamed of and it was finally a reality.
I chose to make the hard journey an enjoyable one for myself. Anyone who has ever had to leave their family and move to a new place knows this, you have to find a coping mechanism and look at the bigger picture to survive.
I have gone through the best and worst times alone without my parents and even though it has been difficult, it has made me the independent and strong woman I am today. I have celebrated birthdays, graduations, have moved across country, gotten jobs, and experienced many other things all by myself, but through it all I learned to look on the bright side and to never lose focus.
What has gotten me through my hard days is looking at the bigger picture and knowing I have the ability to turn these hard days into strength.
Moving to America gave me the chance to chase my dreams and make them a reality. I’m finally able to create the life I’ve always wanted knowing the only things in my way are my own limiting thoughts. I have worked very hard on myself and am finally able to silence negative thoughts and only think positive thoughts that get me closer to my goals.
Before moving here I dreamed of how my life would be in the US, I would imagine living here and being in the moment and think about how it made me feel. Thinking about my ideal life and never doubting myself enables me to get through my hard days knowing I am making my parents proud. I now have two master’s degrees, have a job I love, and am able to create the life I’ve always dreamed of for myself.
Being an immigrant has enabled me to have thicker skin, look at the bright side, and focus on the good.
Immigration has enabled me to have sympathy for more people, be more understanding, and see the beauty in the differences we all have. Being an immigrant is a beautiful part of me and I am forever grateful for the doors it has opened for me.
The powerful creator within me gained its strength through this journey and is now helping me create the best life where I can be the happiest and most genuine version of myself.