emad | egypt
THE UNITED STATES WAS OUR DREAM BECAUSE WE WANTED TO HAVE FREEDOM, RESPECT, AND SAFETY. I THINK THAT IS WHY IT IS THE DREAM FOR MANY PEOPLE - TO LIVE IN FREEDOM AND WITH SAFETY. THAT'S WHY WE THANK GOD EVERY DAY THAT WE ARE HERE.
Before I came to the United States in 2001, I dreamed of coming here. From the age of 11, I applied for the immigration lottery every single year but never got it. But then I got married—and, when I applied for my wife, she got it the very first time! It was such a big surprise, and we were so happy. The United States was our dream because we wanted to have freedom, respect and safety. I think that is why it is the dream for many people--to live in freedom and with safety. That's why we thank God every day that we are here.
The day we left for the United States was such a mix of emotions. It was a mix of joy to come to this new country and sorrow to leave our family. It was a mix of excitement and worry about the unknown future. We didn't know what to expect in American culture. It has definitely been a challenge to find a balance between the culture here and our Egyptian culture. Especially how we relate to our freedom. My wife and I are always trying to figure out how to use the freedom we have in the United States wisely, especially in our parenting. We are always trying to figure out how to teach our two sons about Egyptian culture and how important it is to respect and obey their elders, but also how to live in the freedom that they have in the United States and how to express themselves.
I want my sons to make the most of the time they have been given. For everything under heaven there is a time – time for study, time for fun, time for everything. I want them to take advantage of every minute and know that unless they are gowing forward, they will go backwards. You cannot just stand still in place. Every day is an opportunity to grow and learn.