BHS senior adapts to life in the United States

Matthew Farley, Staff Writer

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Six years ago, senior Huda Ajeel and her family immigrated from Iraq to the United States of America in 2012. Upon moving to the United States, Ajeel had thoughts about the country she was soon to call home, as any person would.

“I thought the entire country was like what you see in movies, such as in the movie, ‘Home Alone 2: Lost In New York’,” Ajeel said. “I believed it was all skyscrapers, but when I arrived I realized quickly that was not the case.”

At 11 years old, a big change was in store for Ajeel and her family as they relocated to the state of Texas.

“Immigrating took one year after we applied, once we immigrated the first two months were very hard because we had to basically start from scratch,”  Ajeel said

After about six months of living in Texas, Ajeel and her family packed their bags once more and made the trip up to Maine.

“We moved to Maine because we had more family here,” said Ajeel.

After settling in, Ajeel and her family became more accustomed to their new surroundings. However, they still had to figure out another crucial step to living in the United States.

“Moving to America was a great opportunity for us,” said Ajeel. “But one of the biggest obstacles we had to face was speaking English– which me and my family had a tough time learning.”

Everyone in her family was trying hard to understand the language. However, as time moved along, they felt more comfortable with the language.

“English was very hard to understand, it took me and my family about two years to learn. We are still learning new words every day,” said Ajeel.

As Ajeel and her family became more accustomed to speaking English and the American lifestyle, there were other obstacles for them to adapt to.

“We still needed to figure out how to get used to fairly new things to us. Such as using debit cards, paying insurance, and learning more etiquette of being American. It was a lot to learn.” Ajeels’ sister Batool Ajeel said.

In the current political climate, it seems some people are more vocal with their opinions, especially towards minorities like immigrants. But Ajeel explains it’s not as widespread as you may think.

“People have treated me and my family very well since we’ve  moved here, and I haven’t had any problems,” Ajeel said. “Everyone is a lot more accepting of other people in the United States and that is one of my favorite parts about this country.”

Ajeel said she believes that not just the United States but the world in general should just be kind to one another.

“One of the things I would change about, not just the US, but the world in general, would be hate. Even though not a lot of that hate is directed towards me, I still believe that all hate should just stop,” Ajeel said.

Overall Ajeel enjoys getting to better understand America and all it has to offer. She is still working hard to make herself master the complex language of English.

“America is a great country filled with amazing opportunity and growth and I enjoy learning more about its culture,” said Ajeel.

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