Thankfulness over a Green Card

Version française ici.

Today, I’ve received the Green Card that the American government decided to grant and send me, and I’ve never felt so thankful in my life.

I’m thankful that I can finally truly build a life here for myself and my family on the long run; I’m thankful that I won’t anymore need to have a backup plan ready at all times to fold back to Europe “in case something happens”, which I believe is what all temporary immigrants do.

I’m also thankful that I’m now unconditionally welcome in the country where my little girl was born. Even though times do get tough sometimes, Vanessa and I have never been happier than since we’re here, and I’m very thankful that we’re so nicely invited to be here for a while.

It was an unusual Green Card process, based on my professional achievements at the time it was posted (very early 2014); but I know for a fact that I don’t owe these achievements to myself only, so my thankfulness doesn’t only go to the US government, but even more to other people without whom none of this would have been possible.

The awesome people I wish to thank for it

At the top of my list, I know I owe much of the quality of my case to my previous employer Clever Age, and its culture of permissiveness and responsabilisation. I would never have held so many positions and responsibilities, spoken in so many events, achieved so much in just a few years, if it wasn’t for the culture of action and general freedom that there is over there. I know that the amount and variety of stuff I’ve done over there in such a short time is also mostly what impressed my current employer, and is the biggest part of how I got the awesome job I have now.

I’m also feeling very grateful to the few people who agreed to sign a letter of reference for my legal case, which was instrumental in making it strong. None of them had to do it, and they all got out of their way to make sure to help; I am deeply in their debt. (Although I’m craving the let the world know of their awesomeness, I’m going to have to refrain from listing them here, as I’m sure some of them wouldn’t necessarily enjoy the attention.)

I’m obviously very thankful to the attorney I worked with to get this through. Of course, attorneys don’t come cheap, but the value that Brian provided goes beyond any money I’ll ever own. If you are intending to immigrate to the US, do get in touch with him, I very warmly recommend him! I’m also amazingly thankful to Sophie, who sent me his way.

Also, much of the strength of my case relied on my speaking gigs at Paris Web, my book published by Eyrolles and my co-writer Jérémy, my speaking at Front Row, my being part of Sud Web, my article co-written for Dev.Opera and my co-writer Sophie, my articles in Le Train de 13h37, etc… and I’m feeling so grateful to all of these people for giving me all those opportunities. There would be many people to thank by name, so I’ll just throw you a deep, warm general-thank-you.

I’m definitely very thankful for my current employer too, for trusting me that much and making every single of my days fascinating. Working for a major leader usually accounts for a lot in such Green Card cases; however, this supposedly wasn’t taken into consideration, since only the achievements prior to the filing date are supposed to be looked at, and I was not hired yet back then. But if the USCIS agent did notice it anyway, I’m sure it did impact him/her anyway in some way, and had some role to play.

Finally, I’m thankful for the people over at Zengularity and the prismic.io team. Even though I know for a fact that what I did over there didn’t account to much in the decision of the USCIS to grant me the Green Card, as well as in the decision of my current employer to hire me (I didn’t have much to show off from my work there), I know for a fact that being geographically in US territory was a strong factor in both instances, and they trusted me enough to send me over here to help in the kickstarting phase of their product.

Thinking of the people who are still fighting

My heart and compassion goes to all the ones who are still struggling to be allowed to settle where they want, whether they live there already and can’t be allowed to settle, or whether they’re not yet allowed to live there at all. I was in their shoes for a long time until recently, and this is a very hard place to be. I was committed to the US immigration reform cause until now, fervently publicly enthusiastic about it, and although I made it, I can assure you this will not change.

With this new stability to build a solid life, and also my amazing baby daughter Lila who joined us in September, there are many things we’ll get to be thankful for, on Thanksgiving!

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