I Thought America Was in Heaven

Anonymous, Tonga
Interviewed by Alisi Mafi

"It wasn't up to me if i wanted to stay or go; my parents wanted me to come to america for a better life."

      I always felt like turning back. My life back “home” is something I would never forget. As a young child I would go out with my friends either playing soccer or rugby or even just hanging out at the movies. Each morning we would wake up for school and meet up with each other and walk together to school. Our school was very poor we couldn’t afford much. I grew up in Nuku’alofa, Tonga which is the capitol of Tonga. My parents came from another island called Nomuka. I was living in Nuku’alofa because there was a point in my life where my two brothers were very ill and because there wasn’t enough medical information that would have diagnosed and cured their illnesses
in the island we were living on, they died. At a young age I had an unknown illness so my parents took me to Nuku’alofa to get the medical treatment I needed. I lived with my aunt who basically raised me. I thought that I’d be spending the rest of my life with her.
    America was the last thing that came to mind. I wasn’t really prepared to leave my home but I knew I would be leaving soon to America because my parents were doing a lot of preparing like filling out tons of paperwork, getting certain shots and sending some of our things to America. I didn’t want to leave because I didn’t want to leave my aunt behind. It wasn’t up to me if I wanted to stay or go, my parents wanted me to come to America for a better life. Everything happened so fast, that I didn’t expect.
    I was excited to be traveling to America because I thought America was in heaven because when we were in the airplane all you could see were clouds. Other than that I was happy to be with my family because I wasn’t familiar with them and wanted to know about them more. I didn’t know what would happen once we got to America.
      I was six years old when I came to America. My uncle is the one who brought us here. He moved from Idaho to California to be able to help us settle into America. He helped my father get a job and so many other things. Without his help it wouldn’t be possible for us to be here.
    There are better things in life out there, then the things you already have. Here in America we have things that many people around the world would die for, such as the education we have here. We have to make our life useful in America and not take it for granted because there are those who would want to be in your place. That is the reason why many people come to America for a better life.