It is a dream of every Indian working in the IT industry to get to the USA and settle there. I did get a chance to experience the American dream in my life. America, the land of dreams welcomed me through an onsite opportunity through my employer.
I flew to America on an H1B visa. I still remember the night of my flight, my friends visited me to wish me luck, my whole family came to send me off. My mom had tears sending me off to the immigration at the Airport. I was thrilled about my future and bit worried about what I am leaving back in India.
I landed in the USA with a lot of dreams, my friends came to receive me at the airport. It was not much struggle settling in as I had my friends and colleagues helping me with it. Life was suddenly so easy, in spite of working long hours and overnight calls with offshore, I seemed to enjoy the new place.
With lots of travels around the country and exploring it, I was seeing more of the world. Life was good. The USA gave me new experiences from cooking my own food to owning my own car. When everything was going well for almost a two years, all of a sudden I was asked to leave to India by my IT firm for some revenue reasons.
Being on H1B and already have served two years in the USA, I had options of choosing to leave the company which brought me to the USA and look for the local employment opportunity. I started looking and luckily got an offer with a local company, switched jobs so that I could stay in the USA. Little did I know at that stage that things are going to be different.
Applied for my new Visa with the new firm, the thing in the USA is one can start working with a new firm applying for your visa even before the visa transfer is complete and the visa transfer takes more than 6 months in the normal process mode. So I start working with the new firm.
Things were smooth, there was less work in the new firm and more time to spare. Meanwhile my parents start looking for a bride for me, they find one and get me engaged (that’s how an arranged marriage works 😉 ). Then there comes the news, USA rejects my visa transfer saying some documentation error to describe the job I applied for.
That was a big setback, till with all friends to backup, applied for my visa again with a new firm. Then after a six-month my visa was rejected again for some missing documentation. Both time I had hired an attorney to handle my case, not sure how some documentation error happens. The shock was big the second time and I know this time, my time in the land of opportunities has come to an end.
All my dreams shattered when I heard the visa rejection for the second time. I was forced to go back to India. Sold all that I owned there in the USA and booked my flight back to my own country. The 24 hours flight time was the most confused I have ever been in my life. I was engaged to a girl at that point and landing back home with no job in hand, not sure what will be my future.
Lucky for me, I had a good amount saved when I worked in the USA. So I was able to manage myself till I got a job. Eventually, I got a good job after 3 months search. Those three months were pretty hard moments of my life. Have to answer all the family members and relatives. Got my engagement canceled as I lost my USA privilege. Pretty hard time.
But thinking back all those now, I realize those all moments have made me stronger. It made me more confident. Gave me a boost in life, now I know I can face whatever my life throws at me. It also made me realize what I missed in India and now this experience has made myself to appreciate my country even more.