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Big Family to Silent Jail – First Few Months Experience on H4

Last week, Ruchika wrote about Life on H4 Visa and What it taught her. This week, she is sharing her experience on adjusting to US life during her first few months. Thanks to Ruchika for sharing her experiences ! Her expereince is a reality that is unspoken or shared less with friends and family back home. If you would like to share your experience, you can share it here


Joint Family to Silent Jail – Big Change – Moving to US on H4 Visa

Accustoming myself here in US during initial few months of travel were bit more challenging than rest. I came on Friday and it was a long weekend ahead. I resigned from my job four days before my travel, lived in a joint family for 3 years after marriage and even had a grand-marriage of my sister-in-law 6 days before so initially it felt that someone has trapped me in some kind of silent jail where I could only talk to my co-inhabitants who in my case were my 6 months old daughter and a husband who comes in the evening. During day time whenever I looked outside of my window, I could only see an empty parking lot and an adjacent city road with few cars moving. Unlike New York or other cities in America, Tampa is a bit of peaceful city with less crowd and one that does require a car for commuting with family.

Changes with getting Car and Making Friends

Luckily, the community where we live is near to my husband’s office and 70 % of inhabitants are Indians, mostly working in same office. There is play area which is always crowded with families, a back pond where one can easily spot families strolling in evening so making new contacts was not a very difficult task. Till then we had no car so my description of silent jail had changed into a quarantined/remote island. After a month or more, we got our wheels and our first run was from our remote island to a beautiful beach. Then that remote island never looked the same. Few contacts we made earlier turned into good friends to very good friends and we started exploring this beautiful state with them.

Being a full time Mother at Home – Cooking food delicacies, DIY art,  Saving
Being a full time mother at home is very tiring but I have a mind that always keep running and cooking up something so I always keep it occupied and constantly feeds it with things that keep it and myself positive. I often try to steal the time when little-one is asleep to keep myself productive and inspired. Initially I learnt my food delicacies later when we got bit more settled I learnt DIY-art and decorated my home by myself, I do read, explore new things or whenever it’s any special moment, I try to make it special with homemade surprises so with these little things life goes on. One more thing I learned is art of saving here and can save around 30-40 % on my grocery bills and other bills too, without compromising the quality of life. If I can’t earn, I can save and regard every penny saved as penny earned.

Thinking, Thinking…Positivity…sleepless nights, family…Reason
It’s not that I have a god gifted positivity, ask my husband he can tell everyone better (:-P). Like I mentioned earlier, my mind keeps running and running, talking to itself, thinking and overthinking. Sometimes I really wonder why it just can’t sit back and relax, why I made so many dreams for me or why am I so ambitious? I cried, I cribbed, had sleepless nights, even had fights but I realized all these things were disturbing my family life and my child. One more bitter truth I have realized is that we all are here due to some reason, no-one has forced us to come here or hand-cuffed us and we are free to go back to our homeland, there is absolutely no business that’s going to shut down if one person leaves. Although it’s not justified to make H4 visa holders dependent on H1 visa holders and not given opportunity to work till H4 EAD in this developed economy but this is how things were and we knew from the start, maybe some of us just did not measure the density of situation earlier.

Still adjusting…Never ends…Positivity
I don’t know how one outlines adjustment, when someone ask me have you adjusted or how have you adjusted in US? A part of me says yes but from somewhere the other part says no, not yet, I am still adjusting; perhaps I have learned the way of living till the time my racing mind finds its own path. But yes, till that time I will definitely live every moment of life and focus on positive because somewhere in my heart I had one more dream for my future, to have a happy and blissful life and if I am not fulfilling this one, then I am not doing right with my life.
“Live life to the fullest”

What has been your experience adjusting in the first few months in America ?

Love to hear your thoughts.

Image Credits : https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/c/c7/Enjoying_wedding_in_India.jpg, https://i.ytimg.com/vi/kX20M9P805I/maxresdefault.jpg , https://pixabay.com/static/uploads/photo/2015/08/04/20/16/america-875164_960_720.png


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  1. Hi Ruchika,

    Although i am reading and respobding almost a year later but i must say you have done an amazing jib of providing vital info on almost everything we neeed to know abt this illusive land USA.

    Thanks again.

  2. hahaha…..Life on H4 means from managers appreciation to hubby’s depreciation. Today only i got thrashing …”Bhindi banane ki tumhari aukaat nhi hai”, to next time mat banana…….worrying from client presentation to food’s salt n pepper …thats h4 life. And after so much sacrifice or i should call it career suicide what you got? Insults from peers , his colleagues, family n friends…..kya karte ho dinbhar? bore ho gate hoge? your house should be so clean, prim n proper as you are a housewife now… if my nails are not polished one day….women bric bats….jab kaam nahi karte firbhi nails are so plain….hmmm you must be a very lazy women…..wow what a life…. :P…

    And the epic in the end…when your hubby says it was entirely your decision to come here, i never forced you even if he game you a divorce warning initially….. lol

    • Hi, so sorry to hear that and I can understand your pain and frustration after hearing those words. May be I would have also felt so, if I was there at your place. I think you should discuss with your hubby (when he is in happy mood) for your concerns esp. things that disappoint you, he will understand and so do your true friends and family members will. Rest others are the outsiders, never give them enough power to judge you. Even if they try to, remember they are just trying to destroy your peace for sake of their fake happiness; just ignore those people and live on your life in your way. There are many other things to do in life than just focusing on nail paint, find one for you and always stand for yourself.

  3. Ruchika, Thanks for the thoughts shared. Was reading through every word of yours to figure out if i can find something that can motivate my wife in this “jail :-)” when she lands up here in 3-4 months after her 11 year career. I guess most of the people will/would have the same plan as yours, but to motivate oneself to see through the plans is like taking your life a level higher. All the best.

    • Thanks Vinay. Husband play a very important role in shaping course of life esp. in this “jail :-)”. If she has your support, for sure you guys will be able to find something. All the best.

  4. I am becoming fan of ur writings 🙂 … I have read the previous post “life on h4. And what it taught her”. I am on H4 for almost 3 yrs here and I feel like I am reading my own story … Keep sharing your experience… Thanks


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