Visa changes: A rambling rant

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned before what a massive gamble this new adventure of mine is. I’m leaving my job during one of the worst economic times in recent history; I’m saying goodbye to my house, my car, and most of my worldly possessions; and I’m destroying my finances and depleting my savings account all for the hope that I’m walking into a brighter, happier future.

If everything goes according to plan, my world will be pretty awesome for the first time in nearly two years. But, as I learned nearly two years ago, plans change – in the blink of an eye. I know that there’s a chance that things won’t go according to plan, but that they’ll still turn out just as good – or better – than planned. But I also know that there’s a chance that everything will fall apart and I’ll be left broken beyond repair.

As I creep closer and closer to saying goodbye to my house and my “stuff” I’m finding myself very stressed and panicked. I’m going from a 4-bedroom house where I can have as much “stuff” as I want and an income that [slightly] exceeds my monthly spending and bills to an unknown living situation where I expect to struggle to purchase groceries let alone drop $500 on a new mobile phone without thinking about it.

I’m upset. I’ve realised that I probably can’t take my golf clubs or bike because I don’t know where I’ll store them – nor can I rationalise the additional costs for baggage. I can’t take my über-gadget scanner because I don’t know if there will be space in my flat [which may or may not be furnished and rat-free] and I can’t take all of my clothes and handbags for the same reason. I’m sad. I’m going to have to take public transportation everywhere because I won’t be able to afford a car – and as a proper redneck American, my car is part of my freedom.

But as much as those material things (and the loss of my comfortable income) upset me, they’re not what’s getting me down today because I know I can store my “things” with family in America or replace them with new “things”. What’s upset me today is that I’ve just learned that the most recent changes at the UK’s border agency mean the end of the post-study work visa – which played heavily into my plans because I intended to apply for said visa upon completing my master’s degree so that I could stay on in Scotland if I so chose.

OK, there are still other options including a company-sponsored post-study work visa or going straight onto my PhD studies (which is the ultimate goal anyhow) but one isn’t a “sure thing” and the other is an expensive thing! And I know I shouldn’t think too far ahead and I know that I should be upbeat and positive and I know that things will happen the way they’re meant to happen and blah, blah, blah. But some days, it’s hard.

I want to be positive. I want to be that little Pollyanna person spewing gladness and faith at every junction. But some days I can’t even fake it. Some days, all of the fear and the worries and the grief just gang up on me and make the rainbows and unicorns go into hiding. Today is one of those days. And I really hate those days. And it seems like the closer I get to The Big Move, the more these fears and insecurities come out of the woodwork.

To summarise: I’m stressed and unhappy. But I’m sure the Pollyanna attitude with return soon. (I hope?) And thanks for listening to my emotional rant…

4 Replies to “Visa changes: A rambling rant”

  1. Life is full of uncertainties and fears; you could huddle in your comfortable job and not venture forth…you could…but you won’t. Sometimes dreams have nightmarish endings but that doesn’t stop you from going back to sleep…to dream.
    You could be in your comfortable job and spacious home ten years from now saying “if only”…you could be…but you won’t. You have a dream and you’ve always followed those dreams.
    I know I’ve given you this Teddy Roosevelt quote before, (it’s one of my favorites) but here it is again:
    “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

  2. Ah man, I know EXACTLY how you feel right now 🙁 I just see the word “Visa” and my heart goes into spasm. Anything that has something to do with getting a Visa is scary – and giving up so much just makes it even scarier – you give up a lot in the hopes that you will gain so much more – but you can never be certain until you have specific ‘answers’ from certain individuals or institutions – like governments!
    I so wish I could enjoy Berlin while I’m here trying to get a Work Visa – but the uncertainty of the whole process makes me not even want to wake up most mornings 🙁
    The only certainty we have is that God is on our side and He’s fighting for us. And He’s far bigger than anything that could ever stand against us. I know it doesn’t help to turn your mood around completely – I sometimes dread people telling me the exact same thing – but it really is the truth.
    You’ll be fine 🙂

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