Expat in France – Homesickness

Today as I sit here at home in France with such feelings of homesickness so strong that I can’t breathe and I ache inside to be home with my family and friends.  I have been in France with my husband and son for almost two years now, but things have not progressed as we had wished and I feel they never will.  I am constantly trying to look for a job, but they do not seem to want to hire Americans unless it is to teach English and I do not wish to do that as a living.  I do teach now because it brings in money.

When I first came to France I was very excited to be here and wanted everything to be perfect, but after a year and a half I have found out that it was not meant to be because my heart is not in France as my home.  After being in France for less than a year my mother had a heart attack and I was not there to help her get better or even be there for her unless it was through the internet.  My father has had two strokes, my grandmother has passed on, my son graduated high school, he got married, my oldest son joined the Navy and I have been at none of these things because we cannot afford for me to go back and forth to see these things happen.

I have felt so bad and selfish for our son because he is only 3 ½ and being here he will never get the chance to have memories of his grandparents growing up to carry with him as I do with my own grandparents.  He was never able to see my grandmother before she passed and that bothers me.

My husband feels that I am trying to prevent him from moving forward, but I do not see things moving forward after two years and it is really starting to bother me emotionally and physically.  I get so depressed about how we both feel towards me going home to be with my family in the US that I want to cry, but I have to keep things inside for our son’s sake.  I am always at home with our son without much time for myself to do anything just for me, yet I feel selfish for needing anything just for me. 

Is going home just for me? Personally I do not feel it is just for me because my parents are getting at an age where I worry about them and me not being there for them and my son not being able to know them in his life.  Maybe these things are only just trivial to some but to me they are truly significant in my life and I carry the burden daily of wondering if my marriage will survive if I return home.

Do not understand……..Immigration Useless Concept!!!!!

How can it possibly be legal to let a large decision such as a Visa to another country be denied or accepted solely based on one Consular’s opinion when they treat the people like SH** that they see? If that person is having a bad day, if they do not like the look of the other person, if they feel they just do not care what happens then this decision should NOT be made on one person’s opinion on its own because an Opinion is like an Arsehole we all have one just not all of them should be heard.

How in the world can a country let others who are in the system illegally, denying others and mistreat them so blatantly that they feel they are above any retribution from their own Government?! How can American Citizens go outside their country and treat other citizens, of the Host Country they work within, so horribly wrong?  Is this what the US system has come too? We allow millions of illegals into our system, let them use the resources of the states and then give them everything they wish.  Yet when a LEGAL resident is over being out of the country for a little over two months over their year for good reason, they are denied after being a legal resident for over 20 years.  Unbelievable!!!!!

Awful Treatment of French Citizens from the U.S. Embassy in Paris, France

March 01, 2013 

Director, Office of Internal Audit

425 Eye Street, NW

 Room 3260

 Washington, DC 20536

To Whom It May Concern:

I am writing in regards to an appointment my husband, xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, who is a French citizen, had with one of your Consular for a return visa SB1.  The people of this Embassy treated my husband as if he did not deserve the full attention of Consular in which he saw.  He was denied his SB1 because they felt he did not show sufficient evidence to stay over his year outside of U.S. territory. 

I am a U.S. Citizen born, raised and lived my life within the boundaries of the U.S. up until within this last year when my family moved to France in search of work for my husband and myself because the job market in the U.S. had been so poor.  While being in France I had to start treatment of a medical condition in which my bladder was unable to hold urine the treatment did not end until December 2012, which was a result of giving birth.  Our son also had an issue with ear infections in which he has had to have medical treatment on several occasions where if he has another he will need tubes put in.  In the last few months, our son was diagnosed with a heart murmur and blue coloring around his mouth.  The doctor felt he needed to be seen by a specialist in which he was unable to see until January 07, 2013, which was a month over my husband’s year outside of the U.S. territory.  Not knowing exactly what was going on with our son until after being seen by the specialist we did not want to leave until after that appointment.  Now our son and I are fine and have no serious medical conditions or issues.

Not only have there been medical issues, but also my husband’s contract for work with LaPoste was extended for a month over his 6 months CDD that ended on December 31, 2012.  They made it clear if he did not take the extension to the end of January he would be denied his bonus of which we did not want to give up on.  After his contract ended at the end of January 2013 LaPoste messed up the paperwork with ManPower, the agency in which he went through to get the job therefore, in order to get his pay we had to stay to receive the funds which is why we have remained over in France two months over his year.

We both have family within the U.S.   My mother works for a Federal Dept, my father has owned his business for over 40 years, all three of my brothers did service in the military, and two of my sons are in the military.  My grandmother just passed away in the last three weeks, my mother has had a heart attack in the last year and my father has had two strokes in the same period of which I would like to return with my family intact in order to be there for both of them.  I would also like to finish my Bachelors degree of which I have a 3.76 GPA in Business Administration: Spec in International Business through an U.S. University online.

My husband and I have worked paid taxes; file our taxes yearly and lived our whole lives within the U.S. until the last year and a half.  Yet we pay $275 to be denied his SB1 for being outside the U.S. two months over for very good reasons because it is at the discretion of an employee who is very ugly and hateful to my husband who is a French Citizen in a Country where she works.  When I had to get a Visa to come to France from the French Embassy in Atlanta, Georgia the French were nothing, but nice in a country that is not theirs.  Yet the American Consular in a foreign country treats the citizens of that country deplorable, did not listen to any reasoning, and did not look at the proof in the paperwork only that she felt it was not sufficient to be outside of U.S. two months from the year.  Now I will have to file a petition with the I-130 at the cost of $420, which could potentially be denied again. 

I could understand that if my husband were a criminal or wanted within the U.S., but he is not yet your process and the people do not even seem to care the harm they are doing to families.  Our son and I both are U.S. citizens and my husband while living within the U.S. had of legal right to receive his Social Security Number, Driver’s License, Green Card and has/had been within the U.S. for over 28 years until now, with him and I being together for over 8 years.

I would like to say that this is a formal complaint of the process and employees of the U.S. Embassy in Paris in the treatment of loyal resident and/or potential resident and/or citizen.

Thank you

To My Loving Grandmother, Until we are reunited:

Sweet dreams have come to you at last.
To rest with the Angels and the Good Lord Above.
For the time you spent here on earth has come to an end.
As your family will feel such sorrow at letting you go.
We will never forget you and always count our blessings.
At the times we spent together, the memories that you will ever be a part.
You will forever be missed with the love straight from the HEART….
By Your Loving GrandDaughter JHB

My Granny

My Granny
Today I am thinking of my grandmother and when I used to live with her, my older brother and my mom as a little girl.  I used to watch her make dinner while I sat at the dinner table.  She would always use a wooden bowl to make homemade buttermilk biscuits and to this day I cannot replicate those biscuits to save my life no matter how hard I have tried.I remember listening to My Ding a Ling by Chuck Berry for the first time on 8 track being there.  LOL Remembering her raspy voice call me “Jackson” hehehe was never sure why she did, but she did.  My mom, brother and I had gone with Granny to see BoxCar Willie and Jacky Ward in concert and I can actually laugh at remembering that I used to and still do love BoxCar Willie music.  Her favorite were Marty Robbins and Don Williams.  She had an 8 track of old trucker songs that I would listen to “Teddy Bear” is my favorite.  Yes, I am telling my age, but who cares.

I loved when the family reunion would come around because Granny would always go all out with making things.  She made this fruit salad in a watermelon rind one time and I ate most of the green grapes out of it and got so sick before the reunion even started.

She has taught me so much in my life that I am so grateful to such a beautiful woman. So many thoughts going through my mind, all the memories that time had put away come flooding back into the forefront as it they happened just yesterday.

Love for my Granny puts a smile on my face and love in my heart.

Only human beings can be this hateful…..

I have thought about this post long and hard since I saw it on my Facebook page.  If anything people know about me I do not say anything without probable cause or provocation to do so.  Granted this post may have not been pointed directly at me, but I feel directly connected to it, for me, some obvious reasons.  I will say that I was very hurt by what was said and it made me very lonely to know that there would be consequences to it.

First and foremost I am neither a fool nor have I ever been, but I do know some.  Secondly, if I say anything about America I have that right because I am an American Citizen which means I have FREEDOM OF SPEECH, Right?!?!?! Thirdly, if any member of my family says anything about America they also have that right being an American citizen themselves or a LEGAL immigrant for over 28 years of their lives living in America, paying taxes in America, signing up for the selective service in America, working in America, but maybe FREEDOM OF SPEECH only goes for the illegal immigrants in America now.  Maybe people from other countries that live or who have lived in America and have called America their home for years on end should just bend over and take it raw so they can just be screwed without saying a word.  Give me your time and money, but you have no say so in what happens.

No one knows the people who say nasty things except maybe through only what has been told second, third or fourth string maybe even further down the line if at all.  What others say is THEIR OPINION or how they may see things, which if I am not mistaken it isn’t a crime.  I have read more hateful posts on FB about countries disliking other countries than I ever thought possible.  I have said hardly nothing what so ever like the post above.  I DO NOT tend to lean towards one side or the other, but I do tend to see the whole story before I say anything.

Just last week there was a post from Jodi Miller bashing and “dogging” another country and yet when someone responds in kind they get called assholes.  I do wonder though, what are the people  that do the same to other countries? Opinions are like assholes we all have one, but most don’t feel the need to express their opinion so hatefully.  I guess other countries deserve what they get, Right?!?!

I love the United States of America, but I do realize it has considerable flaws that make it far from perfect.  I love France, but I realize it also has considerable flaws that make it far from perfect.  Oh and one important little fact here, Ummm, America is far from being better off economically than any country right now.  One more little tidbit of fact, AMERICANS aren’t the only people who visit France and France doesn’t only consist of tourist money considering a lot of International Companies have their headquarters based here, but I guess that money doesn’t count.

People can love to hate me, but I don’t sugar coat what I see or what is read.  If I see something in either country I take offense to I may say something or I may not, but I NEVER say it so hatefully and in such a manner that people would look at me and wonder what kind of person I was to talk like that about other people.

Society, Cultures Amazement

Why is it, I wonder, that people think their society or culture is better? Have you ever been to the country you put down? Have you ever lived in the society you deem unworthy of your standards?

I have lived in two different societies, yet both are vastly the same in every aspect.

Both have their “FREEDOM” to choose. Both have taxes. Both have governments stating they will do the best for their people. Both have individuals who are wealthy and who are poor.

“FREEDOM” comes at a price just like everything else, yet there really isn’t a “FREEDOM” in which the people are totally free to pick and choose as they wish on everything. Yet each country has FOUGHT & DIED for its “FREEDOM”.

“FREEDOM” being free to pick and choose without restraint. I can choose what school I want to go too. I can choose any doctor (not in a book) to go too. I can choose ANY hospital I want. I can choose to open my own business. I can choose what career I would like. I can choose where to live. I can choose to have children. I can choose pretty much anything and everything I want, just like anyone else!!

I can not NOT pay my taxes. I can not NOT pay my insurance. I can not NOT pay my rent or any other bills I have acquired.

The main difference people see is the healthcare system. The same amount of taxes both countries pay is pretty much the same and yet one country has a healthcare system for their (ALL) people that comes out of taxes. The other does not. Is this the reason so many people find another so unworthy?! I do not wait months to see a doctor or a dentist or an eye doctor. People die there, people die here.

Both societies are both Capitalist and Socialist, NO MATTER WHAT YOU THINK, THEY ARE!!!!!! Both have social security, both help needy individuals guess what people that part would be the socialist. Both countries people pay for it out of their paychecks but it is up to the gov’t to let you have it back. One just chooses to let you see it before you retire to the nursing home.

If you think the large companies in one country aren’t regulated by the gov’t (which is socialist economy aspect) then why are large companies unable to become a monopoly??!!

Just because one country has a Socialist for a President doesn’t make the country any less a Socialist and Capitalist country. Socialist just happens to be a “Party” just like Democrat, Republican, Liberal or anything else, get a grip

GET THIS THROUGH YOUR HEADS PEOPLE “NO COUNTRY IS 100% TOTALLY FREE” NO MATTER HOW MANY MEN AND WOMEN HAVE DIED FOR IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That is the illusion that has been told over and over again.

by JHB