I sit here, the husband of a woman who immigrated here from Canada in 2008 with reservation, unable to relieve the stress she continues to feel as an immigrant.

We’re better off than many. The injuries I sustained, while preparing to advance into the officer ranks after 10 years with the Marine Corps, provide a safety net most don’t enjoy.

She comes from a place from which some of my family immigrated in the late 1800s, so we’re culturally similar. And yet there are big differences and hurdles through which she’s forced to jump that make life more difficult than it needs to be.

For instance, it was years before she earned the right to work. That’s an important space for newcomers who need to make friends and carve out a space in our community. She volunteered in an effort to fill that void, but that still left her with a considerable lack of social engagement.

Most of all she’s struggled to understand our divide. Our intense political divide is foreign to her. It doesn’t interfere in Canada as it does here. They responded as one to support us and protect themselves after 9/11, and to the pandemic.

She sees them in their third lockdown, keeping infection rates very low, and wonders why we’d accept anything else.

Jamie Beaulieu, Farmington

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