What if..

As many of you know a few weeks ago Haley and I filed all the paperwork for our waiver. It will take about a year for everything to be processed and accepted.

If the waiver is granted I will have an interview scheduled in Juarez with a consular officer. This person will decide if I will be allowed to return to the U.S. The problem that I face from that point is that as soon as I cross back into Mexico, I automatically trigger a 10 year bar. This happens because I was in the country unlawfully when I turned 18. There is the potential for additional time to be added to that 10 year bar for every year I  have stayed in the country unlawfully. In theory, I would be looking at a total of 19 years. My future will be in the hands of one person. If this person finds any reason of admissibility I will not be allowed to return.

If this were to happen I would have to file another waiver which will take another year.

This brings me to the what if scenario, which I have been thinking about more and more everyday.

What if the person conducting the interview is having a bad day?

What if I am denied my visa and I am stuck in Mexico for at least another year, or worse 10+ years?

What if I don’t get to come home?

I won’t get to see Haley every day or ask her how her day went.

jose n haley.jpg

I won’t get to hold her when she’s upset.

I won’t be able to lay with her and hold her as she falls asleep.

I won’t be able to walk into my shop every day and talk to my brother or hear Jack say “nothing mucho” after I ask him what’s up, or hear the random stuff that comes out of Abelino’s mouth when he thinks an English word is funny.

I won’t get to see my best friend Eric and talk about whatever random stuff we have on our minds.

I won’t be able to run my family business and see it grow.


I won’t be able to see my friends or family.

I hate thinking about the what if’s and all of the things I could miss.

Sometimes I honestly can’t believe that I have to go through all of this. I have been here for 27 years of my life. I have a local business, I pay my taxes, I try to be an asset to my community and Rockford is my home but because I don’t have 9 digits I’m an illegal immigrant!

It makes me so sad thinking about the what if’s.

I won’t get to cuddle up next to Marble, or give him tons of treats when Haley’s not looking.

I’ll miss the holidays with my family.

So much can be missed in a year and so much more in 10…

I can’t control the outcome and that scares me. Even if I am granted my visa I can still be denied entry into the U.S. if the customs agent on the way through the airport doesn’t like me. Nothing is permanent until I get my visa stamped and they say “welcome to Chicago.”

My mind races with different scenarios.

I guess the upside is that I’ll get to meet the family I have in Mexico.

I’ll be able to see my parents again.

I can help my dad build his home and keep my mom company. I can sit with her and have coffee and talk about everything and anything.

I’m afraid of the what if’s but I know there is nothing I can do about them. What I can do is enjoy the time that I have left in Rockford.

I will cherish every moment I have with Haley and Marble.

I will cherish my business, my co-workers, and smile every time I hear “nothing mucho.”

I’ll jump at any opportunity to see my friends.

I will continue on with my life and forget the what if’s…

-Jose the presidente

10 thoughts on “What if..

  1. You will get through whatever comes your way brother! Live for today always, tomorrow is not guaranteed.

    I hope to have some good times with you prior to your journey.

    Speak soon my friend.

    P.S. it’s not the same at BNI without you!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I hope you don’t avoid this question with the “i don’t know or care…it’s not my fault I’m in this position”….but it is whoever brought you from Mexico to the US illegally. So who do you blame for your situation now (1) whoever brought you here illegally (2) the government or people in Mexico forcing people to leave Mexico, (3) the government or people of the USA for allowing or incentivising people to come here? I think people in your situation must lead the solution to stop future children from facing this same problem?


    1. Dear Joe,

      First, thank you for your comment and for taking an interest in our blog. To answer your question in a nutshell, I don’t blame anyone for the situation that I am in.

      I did have some resentment towards my parents especially after I turned 18 and many times I thought to myself, “Why did you put me in this situation?” When I turned 20 I wanted to go back to Mexico so that I could apply to enter the legal way. However, after meeting with different immigration attorneys I was advised not to do that. I was an adult and I would trigger the 10-year bar as soon as I crossed the border. I had to make a choice– leave everything I know and love and return to a country I have never known where I don’t know anyone, or continue to live in the shadows as an illegal alien. I made my choice. I acknowledge that staying here once I became an adult I was breaking immigration laws. I also acknowledge that my parents broke the law by entering the country illegally and establishing a life here, but they did what was best for their family in their mind.

      I don’t know much about Mexico, its government or its people to provide an opinion. What I do know from what my parents have told me is that if they had stayed in Mexico we would not have lived the way we lived in Rockford. A well-educated person in Mexico with a good job makes a fraction of what someone from the US can make. I don’t know what my life would have been like if my family had stayed in Mexico. Based on what my parent’s education level is and the area they lived in I might have dropped out of school as they did not even finish middle school. I would probably have a very low income job and maybe have illegally entered the US myself as an adult.

      The US is the land of opportunity. People from all over the world would do almost anything to come here. I didn’t make a choice to come here. That decision was made for me when I was 2.5 years old. However, I did make a choice to stay here. This is a great country. Sure, it has its flaws; everything does but it’s such an amazing place to be in. I am happy that I’ve created strong roots here. It’s my home.



      1. Yes, I’ve heard stories of many people like you in this situation. I’m sympathies to it and i keep you and people in socialist and corrupt countries like Mexico in my prayers.
        Again, I’m sure you don’t want future generations to suffer as you are. What solutions do you support to help prevent or minimize this happening to others?


      2. Joe,

        Our apologies for not responding to this! Somehow it slipped through the cracks.

        Unfortunately, we are not experts in the matter. I do know that the more people share their stories like we are, that more people will understand the struggles we have to go through. It sounds simple, but I think it’s truly all about educating people about the difficulties one can have when crossing the border illegally. Everyone wants the best life for their children. We’re a nation of immigrants, and that’s what makes us strong. Unfortunately, our immigration system is broken, and it’s something that the government needs to make a top priority.

        Thank you for taking the time to read our story!



      3. I really need answers from people in your situation on these questions:
        1. When you say we’re a nation of immigrants when we’re discussing coming here illegally are you saying there should be no distinction between legal and illegal immigration?
        2. Do you support Trumps plan to make DACA permanent as long as we create stronger boarder security including building barriers?
        I’m a little surprised and disappointed to know you don’t have any ideas or solutions to help future generations minimize the chance of suffering like you are.


      4. Joe,

        I am happy to answer questions you may have to the best of my ability. Jose and I have never gone through this before, so it’s a learning process for us, too. Again, we never stated we’re experts. By sharing our story, we are hoping to make a small difference.

        1. My great grandfather came to this country from the Philippines and was able to create a strong basis for my family. There are people now who look for the same opportunities, the same American Dream, but they remain undocumented. Now, they are shut down from the opportunity my great grandfather had. Because the immigration system is broken unfortunately people do immigrate here illegally. There will always be a distinction between legal and illegal immigration.

        2. Trump rescinded DACA. It wouldn’t become permanent. We are hoping Congress will pass the Dream Act which would allow current DACA recipients the opportunity to become US citizens over time. Of course I think we need to have border security, but I don’t think building a wall is the answer. Instead the government should think about using modern technology like cameras and thermal imaging.



  3. Hope everything g works out for you.
    Life is complicated in itself, without having the added issues of government and immigration.
    I am sorry you are in this situation.
    Sending good vibes your way so everything g gets sorted out!


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