The uncertain CW situation

My parents have sacrificed a lot for my family and me, from trying to put food on the table to making sure I get enough sleep for school the next day. Growing up, I haven’t really been separated from them—unless, I would have a trip for one week or three days somewhere but other than that, no. One week, cannot compare to months.

One time I was left behind here on Saipan while both of my parents left for the Philippines to get their papers fixed. We weren’t sure when they would come back or how long it will take. I was left behind with my older sister. Usually when I’m home or get home, she isn’t around because either she is at work or school, or I’m either at dance practice or school. It wasn’t easy. Trying to stay positive on my own and wondering if your parents are okay over there.

Which brings me to the issue that I truly dislike and wish more people of the CNMI would pay more attention and open their hearts to—the CW situation. To others it may not be much but for me, it takes away all I have.

Growing up, my mom and dad had jobs. We never really worried about anything. But now we fear being taken away from each other, what we would eat the next day, what are we going to do, etc. 

My parents aren’t U.S citizens but I am. It is difficult for them to get jobs unless this piece of paper approves it so. It has transformed the life we had, filled with peace and freedom, to one filled with fear and stress. It sucks that we cannot just allow “immigrants” to freely work for a better life for their family. It sucks that people forget sometimes they’re human too and that they’re just trying to help their family. It sucks that many don’t realize how blessed they are to be called “U.S. citizens”; they take everything for granted.

Not only does this issue affect my family but so many of my friends’ families. We wish we could give our parents, siblings, or other people “U.S citizenship” for a gift. I truly just wish we could all just leave contract workers as they are and live their life. They haven’t done anything wrong but lived and served. Yet people treat them like dirt just because they are “immigrants.”

I’m tired of having my parents worry about this when they shouldn’t be. I’m tired of seeing my parents act like it’s okay all the time when it’s not. I’m tired of people focusing on marijuana or pot when there are families out there worrying about this situation. Yes, they could just make their children follow them to their home countries but it will not be easy for us. And that they want what is best for us even if it means leaving us behind. 

Raina Avelino
Chinatown

Raina Avelino Author

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