A New Canadian

the welcome package for a new Canadian

I have always been proud to be Canadian, but never more so than when I attended a ceremony of 85 people receiving their Canadian citizenship last week. I was startled by how moved I was by the ceremony. I am the by-product of two immigrants, and I have heard about my parents’ contrasting journeys of becoming Canadians for my entire life. My mum spoke English and my father came to Canada knowing only two words (thank-you and potato). I have always been drawn to the intrigue of the immigrants’ path. It was not until I married an immigrant myself that I came to appreciate the courage, discipline, and vision it takes to choose a new homeland and to learn to live your days in a language other than your mother tongue.

As the judge spoke of the faith it takes to leave behind the security of family and customs, that they, regardless of their past, have come to a country that offers a future. I realize we all have a future, but many of us have not had to be so premeditated about it. Having been given the gift of Canadian citizenship as a birth right, I found my heart swelling as this group of new immigrants swore their allegiance. The judge invited the rest of us in the room to join in with reaffirming our allegiance, and I was still for a moment, as I realized I’d never really taken a moment to acknowledge what it means to have the privilege of Canadian citizenship.

I was curious to know each of their stories and the pathways they each took to choose Canada, but time and space did not allow this. So I settled my curiosity and merely drank in the celebration in the room. I left knowing that they each had to find within themselves something I could only imagine deliberately connecting to. This was a moment of true celebration that I was grateful to have shared with my new Canadian friend.

Life Coaching with Ruth

t: LifeCoachRuth
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  1. A New Canadian

    Many years ago I went to a Canadian citizenship ceremony and like you, I was very moved. I've always been proud to be a Canadian, but seeing these new Canadians receive their citizenship…I was so proud. And grateful…that I live in a country as wonderful as Canada.
    I think we as Canadians sometimes take for granted how blessed we are to live here. Freedom of speech, food on the table, clean water…the list goes on and on.
    Most of us whine and complain about petty things that go wrong but when it really comes down to it, we've got it made. Let's all stop for a moment and appreciate how lucky we are to live in this glorious country called Canada!

  2. A New Canadian

    For me immigration always has been a matter of new ‘experience’ and ‘challenge’ and I was all for that since I became an adult. I’ve never looked at immigration as a new identity and when this reality rushed to me on my oath ceremony day I was consumed with confusing mixed feelings.

    At the same time that I could see my future opportunities but also I could see that I was about to change my identity and I didn’t feel quite ready for that. I thought to myself: “okay I’m about to interfere with Divine plan”. I used to look at my identity as a sacred land and I thought I should keep it and respect it as it is but it was too late and I was already in ‘identity changing’ ceremony! Then for a moment I reminded myself of ‘experience’ and ‘challenge’ and realized that I was in a challenging experience!

    It was a big day for me.

  3. A New Canadian

    Seven years ago I obtained my Canadian Citizenship. I still have the flag, the pin and the certificate. The Citizenship ceremony was very interesting, I saw all those people in the room, all ages, from all over the world. Everyone dressed well, and many brought young children who demonstrated perfect behaviour.I wondered for years why Immigrants arrive here with nothing, time after time, and manage to acquire wealth in half the time Canada born citizens do. So, here was my answer, right in the Citizenship room, here is a group of people who have a goal, and nothing will stop them from getting to that goal, and having learned how to overcome obstacles large and small, they have all developed habits of visualizing goals, overcoming obstacles, and becoming successful at whatever they pursue.

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