4th of July Identity Crisis

Happy 4th of July!

I am a Canadian living in the U.S. for the past 13 years. I hold Permanent Resident status in the U.S. and have not yet applied for citizenship. Not sure I will. Not sure I need to. Yes, I would like to be able to vote but is that reason enough? Most Americans would say yes. I have a feeling most Canadians would say “Don’t do it!”

The other day someone asked me what I would say if asked my citizenship. I’m sure the look on my face suggested they were an idiot. Canadian. I am a Canadian citizen until I am not. If ever I’m not.

They then asked if I felt more Canadian or American. That one was more difficult to answer. I don’t really feel either. I’m disconnected from Canada in most ways.  My family still lives there but my daughters are American. I’m not sure what’s happening in government (though, to be fair,  sometimes I’m not sure what’s happening in U.S. government either).

I travel with a Canadian passport and my green card…trust me, I’ll never make the mistake of leaving that at home again.

I love the reputation Canada has for its beauty and “nice” people. I brag about some products you can only get in Canada and how some things made in Canada taste better. Oreo cookies for instance.

I still laugh at Americans who think Canadians live in the land of ice and snow, barely have electricity and have not seen a high-rise. These people still exist. Ignorance isn’t limited to Americans, however, because in Canada there are still people who think all Americans are arrogant.

The 4th of July is so important to Americans. Perhaps because I’m stuck in the middle it doesn’t mean as much to me. I like a good BBQ and fireworks as much as the next person and the Star Spangled Banner gives me goosebumps but I don’t feel the same pride Americans have in their country. I couldn’t possibly. It is hard to explain. They are fiercely proud. And while that is true, I still stand and sing the anthem as if it were my own.

Canadians are proud but much more humble about it.

I feel tied to the U.S. for a number of reasons. My daughters were born here and are truly American. No matter how much I’ve tried I can’t get them to say pasta correctly. It’s pahhh-sta. Drives me crazy.

I began my married life, my divorced life and my dating after divorce life all here. I’ve worked here and not worked here. I’ve lived in two different states and discovered a fondness for several others.

To say I’m a proud Canadian who is proud to live in the U.S. may sound confusing but that’s what it boils down to.

Team Canada vs. Team USA at an Olympic hockey game would really stress me out.

Hope everyone has a happy and safe 4th of July!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s