+ weekly recs
Anna Weyant, 2020
We step through a door, and we don’t always know what comes after. This week marks the (likely!) end of all the visa issues I’ve dealt with for the past seven years. I won’t bore you with the details yet because I don’t want to jinx it, but suffice it to say that wanting to do independent work (i.e. not being on an H1-B) in the US is hard when you don’t have a college degree. Someday I’ll do a full recap.
When I first left school I didn’t know how difficult it would be, how much dealing with visa issues would shape my life for many years. I wish now that I could go to 2017 Ava and tap her on the shoulder and tell her, “Hey, it’s going to be okay! It’s just going to take a long, long time.” She would be relieved, but she’d also be frustrated.
Seven years ago I had this impossible naivety, the kind of naivety that only comes with youth and manifests most as idiocy: a total willingness to ignore consequences. Looking back, I always had taste, if we define taste purely as “choices that function as a true, fair, expression of who you are”—I’ve always been stuck being myself, it’s both a curse and blessing—but I definitely did not have execution. That came later, with practice. I was looking through some Facebook messages I’d sent in 2013 yesterday and it was funny to me how completely I did not recognize my own voice. Even though I was me, I couldn’t show up as me yet. So my naivety led me to fumbling and to failure, but also to discovery and joy.