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writing in the margins

Finally in the Same Space for Good | First Family Portraits | Albany NY Photographer

Ever experienced being miles apart from your family for a long period of time? You may be reading this with a funny look on your face right now since we all experienced this loneliness in 2020. We all now know what it feels like to long to embrace a loved one. To be in the same space. 

Channel those feelings and add 9 years and 9,225 miles. The man you see in the picture is a former US army solider. While stationed in South Korea, he fell in love with a beautiful Filipino woman. Their love birthed a baby girl and a marital union. But it wasn’t happily ever after.

Immigration laws got in the way of the family staying together.

For 9 long years, dad lived in the states, filing paperwork, getting the run around and paying the fees needed to obtain US citizenship for his wife and daughter. Mom, although married, was playing single mom, raising their daughter on her own as the family waited patiently to live together.

I know that Hollywood romanticizes that once a foreigner marries a US citizen bibbidi-bobbidi-boo they get their green card, but that’s not reality.

Let me give you a little insight into what obtaining a citizenship in the US really entails.

  • Proof that the marriage is legitimate (through pictures of your courtship and marriage)
  • Interviews by law enforcement to approve travel to the states
  • DNA tests for paternal proof
  • Paperwork fees costing at least $725 per applicant (and does not guarantee approval so in some cases there are several attempts made)
  • Lawyer Fees
  • Once approved with a US residency (green card) you must have your green card for a specific amount of years before you are eligible to apply for the citizenship test that currently cost $640 and biometrics (digital fingerprints) for $85.

Depending on the diplomatic relations between the foreign country of origin and the United States, some of the above requirements may vary.

This family had to wait 9 long years to live together. For 9 years they stayed connected virtually with a 13-hour time difference in-between them. These images are the first pictures they have taken to document the permanency, the endurance, and the love they share for one another.

For a long time they had pictures of themselves separately. Today they have pictures together.

Why am I sharing their story with you?

Pictures matter. Periottt.

They help you cope when you are miles apart from your loved one. They help you celebrate milestone moments. They are proof of your existence, and they document your journey through life.

Friend, what are you waiting for? Document your legacy.

  1. Gg says:

    Beautiful story. Very heartfelt. This is one of proof that TRUE LOVE WAITS. πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ€—πŸ˜πŸ˜πŸ˜ God bless you Pereyra Family. ❀❀❀

    • Alejandra Pereyra says:

      Thank you Gg. I couldn’t agree more. True love is patient and it always wins in the end.

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