First off, apologies for my newspost silence. Most of my writings are on my blog, but I really should update here now and then.
I am an asylum seeker no longer!
Good grief, how long has this fight taken me... eight years? Eight years of being forbidden from taking employment on pain of deportation, just for the crime of being born in an oppressive foreign country? And in these eight years, I was mostly careful with where and with whom I shared this information.
So, in the meantime, there were absolute saints like @EvilRaccoon, @ChazDude, @etherealwinds, @BBank, and @LD-W, among many others, who stood up for people like myself, and I am eternally grateful for every single last bit of support and kindness. So many people have pulled me back from the brink of despair.
Those around me knew this day would come; as for myself, I harboured many doubts. Being used to being held back while seeing other people my age have the right to work and prosper gives a different sort of pain and hopelessness, with people outside looking in also feeling helpless, because they didn't know how to help my situation, and didn't have control over it -- I didn't, they didn't. The lingering hopelessness was dispelled when I was granted leave to remain in mid-November.
Consequently, my life can finally start to move forward:
Seven and a half years ago, I mentioned that I became engaged. Now that I am finally free, we can finally get married, and we are making our preparations towards that. We are hoping to marry in May of 2022.
I remember back then, we were naively expecting to marry in 2016, believing that the Home Office would keep to its projected decision times. Soon after, those timeframes were abandoned.
Being free also opens up another possibility for me:
Work and commissions!
Yes, that's right -- I am taking music commissions, in the form of composition, vocal, or keyboard or drum session work! Send me a private message or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org for inquiries!
As it stands right now, I have already gained one music commission; may it be the first of many. I am also looking at setting myself up as a professional organist for weddings, baptisms, funerals etc. I'm also taking gigs as a drummer, as a pianist, and as a singer.
I mean, it's been three weeks, but transitioning from not being able to work, to setting myself up as self-employed, is an all-consuming task.
Honestly, given the time of year at which I am posting this, I am treating this as my end-of-year post. The changes I've mentioned above far overshadow anything that I've ever done, especially within this year.
This will be my first Christmas truly free to speak my mind without fear of being plucked away, truly free to write the songs I love, truly free to earn my keep, to show exactly how productive I can be to society without being treated as an "other" to be discriminated against.
I don't know what the new year will bring, but one thing's for sure: regardless of how afraid I feel, how frustrated, how lost, I fully intend to grasp my future with both hands.