They say in every spring brings a new beginning. This is what I have learned since then; learn from it and read it well.
I arrived in Montreal last year in April. Being single, I have only myself to rely on. It may sound lonely--I know. But amidst a new city. A new country. I was excited to explore my new surroundings. Being lonely is the last thing in my mind.
My keen sense of adventure has led me a group of young adult volunteers. They befriended me upon knowing I just "arrived from the boat", so to speak -- just arrived from the Philippines. In less than a week, I expanded my network from zero to easily a dozen.
I joined volunteering with them. Their group was about mentoring troubled teens. Keeping them off the streets and into something more productive. I met parents, guardians -- the community. Like my new found friends, upon knowing my circumstance they were eager to help me in anyway they can. Moreover, they were interested for my reasons in immigrating far away. Alone.
Thus the network I have built quickly multiplied exponentially over the next few days. Which led me to find a job. A new apartment of my own. My favorite coffee house. A favorite park I'd like to jog. A favorite church I worship every Sunday. My favorite fruit stand --- and many more.
The moral of this story is to embrace your new home. It may be daunting at first but once you realize that you have nothing at all, it becomes a little bit easier. In other words, It forces you to work at building new foundations at this new life; forging new relationships. You have to go out there and experience new things. Don't limit yourself to familiar surroundings. Isn't that kind of the point you immigrated the first place (aside from better economical opportunities)?
While Filipinos are the first one to offer you help (simply because you're Filipino). Just don't limit and close the door to new horizons -- diba? You might unknowingly turn down a job of a lifetime (of traveling around the world) or the love of your life? In the end, it is up to you to continually push yourself because no one will hand you your new life at a silver platter.
Now, enough with the cliché statements and share your experiences. What lessons can you impart to new immigrants after your first year?
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