All about ME!

by on September 16, 2010

When I tell people that I sold up a 5 bedroom home in South Africa down to 8 suitcases and a couple of thousand dollars in cash, and moved with my husband and two young children to the US, knowing nobody at all in this country except the employment broker … they look at me in amazement.

But it really didn’t seem at all scary. It was a luscious, divine, exhilarating adventure and never once did I doubt that I was going to live the American dream.

I was never homesick – not even for a minute – because I kept firmly focused on the future and the seemingly limitless opportunities that lay around every corner.

Initially, the INS denied me permission to work – a bureaucratic restriction that forbids anyone other than the visa holder (my hubby) to earn any income whatsoever – and since we’d heard of a fellow South African being Deported because his wife started selling Tupperware and naively declared it on their taxes, I was happy to spend all my time creating a new life for my family.

Because the bus stopped right outside our apartment block, and hubby had the car during the day, I spent many hours wandering round that mecca of consumerism known as the Mall of America.

It was like a crash course in Possibility Thinking, Abundance Awareness and Visualization all at once – although I wasn’t really aware of at the time :-

  • I saw the gorgeous outfits in toothpick sizes in the windows of clothing stores and vowed to be able to wear them. Dieting was effortless with those images always in the front of my mind. I shed 25lbs in about 4 months.
  • I saw ‘Help Wanted’ signs everywhere and determined that America was indeed the Land of Opportunity, IF you were prepared to take advantage of it.
  • I also heard people on the bus whining about the ‘lack’ they were experiencing and with Africa and its poverty still fresh in my memory, I could only shake my head at their limited viewpoint. I determined to be forever grateful because no matter how little we might think we have, if you live in this country you are richer than 75% of the rest of the planet.
  • I began to relish my anonymity. In South Africa, I was a minor celebrity. I had a successful theatrical and singing career, to the point that I signed autographs, would be stopped in the grocery stores, and had a newspaper article written about my leaving the country. So to be in a crowded mall and not be recognized was indescribably liberating. I cut my hair. Changed my style. Found a passion for decorating. All without having to entertain any other opinion but my own – and occasionally, my husband’s. That degree of personal freedom induced a mild euphoria that lasted for years.

*More coming later. This is a work in progress … sort of like me!*

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Dan Myers September 22, 2010 at 3:55 pm

Hello Goddess,
Fan Page done and now this, My Pleasure.
One area that needs attention is the box below that says – click here to contact the Goddess, not working.
Oh Yes, I’ll pass the scones. It is almost Tea Time.
Dan Myers


Jacqueline Gates September 22, 2010 at 4:29 pm

Thank you, Sir Dan.
Will attend to the matter as soon as I work out how to do so LOL


Holly September 26, 2010 at 7:04 pm

Sounds so exciting and you come here with the real experience of the lack there compared to what lack isn’t here!! Looking forward to hearing more!!
Holly´s last blog post ..No Time to Exercise!


Christopher Holden September 30, 2010 at 10:20 pm

You saw your future and now you are living it, all part of the plan. Thank you for sharing your experience and faith.


Jacqueline Gates October 3, 2010 at 2:08 pm

It was indeed the plan. And there’s lots more lusciousness to come!


Corporate Portraits Ltd October 3, 2010 at 6:55 am

Very brave story- we have friends who left South Africa to come and live in the UK. They have now settled and doing very well. Grant


Jacqueline Gates October 3, 2010 at 2:07 pm

Funny, it does look brave, doesn’t it? But at the time it was just a Grand adventure.
But I think I would have liked the UK just as much ~ in fact, we’re looking to relocate there soon.


Doreen October 13, 2010 at 7:25 am

Hi Jacqui- Thanks for sharing this story. I enjoy your blog. Doreen


Jacqueline Gates October 13, 2010 at 9:42 am

And I appreciate your visits, Divine Doreen!


Carolee a.ka. Blogging Biz Mom October 21, 2010 at 7:10 am

Holy Moley- I kn0w a Jacqueline Gates and she just recently started social networking on mom type sites.

I saw your comment on another blog along with the link to your blog and thought, “Wow, that girl has come a long way in a few days!”

Wrong Jacqueline, but I’m so happy to meet you.

I once sold everything except what would fit in my little car- besides the hubby, a teen and a baby – and moved across country.

Then came back by train a year later with the kids- minus the hubby. What a great time!

BTW- Hubby never came back 🙂

You are right- we Americans are so spoiled and we don’t even appreciate it (well I try to!)

I have been personally trying to declutter. I have sooo much stuff I don’t use.

Whenever I declutter, my mind “feels cleaned out” too.

Thanks for the great post- I believe I will become your newest subscriber!
Carolee a.ka. Blogging Biz Mom´s last blog post ..Dear Mr Spammer


Jacqueline Gates October 21, 2010 at 11:34 am

Scrumptious Carolee, I’m so glad that I share a name with your friend – what a serendipitous way to meet:)
Thank you for visiting, and for your luvverly comment. I’m utterly delighted to meet you.

the g aka J


Wayne Davis @ Septic Tank Emptying Devon October 21, 2010 at 11:17 am

You are very brave lady indeed. I hope to one day live my dream and move to the US too, but I can never find the courage to do so. I love your optimism and need to use your courage as an example.
Thanks for your post.
Wayne Davis @ Septic Tank Emptying Devon´s last blog post ..Cesspits &amp Cesspools emptied


Vince@ roofing Columbus October 25, 2010 at 6:21 pm

That’s an uplifting story. We(I) forget to live in gratitude for all the blessings we have. I like how you made the most of the situation.

Good luck on your journey!


Jacqueline Gates October 26, 2010 at 12:17 pm

Thank you, Vincent. Gratitude is indeed pivotal if you want to keep enjoying life’s blessings.


JoAnn Donahue November 8, 2010 at 7:21 am

Hello there Goddess..You have been nominated for the Blog Mastery Award
check out my site! Good Luck and do pay it forward as you are so gracious to do !!!!


Jacqueline Gates November 11, 2010 at 3:38 pm

Absolutely and utterly delighted to do so!


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