The Moment of Truth About Immigration - An Opportunity or A Challenge?

Lourdes Elardo

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There is a song from the Philippines which lyrics are “Malilimutan ba ng Ina ang anak na galing sa kanya, sanggol sa kanyang sinapupunan, pa’no nya matatalikdan?" (How can a mother forget her child who came from her womb? How can she deny the child?)

May 3, 2004, is a big milestone in my life. My family, Mom & Dad, Elena and Noriel, my brother and his wife, Toy and Paula, my fiancé, all bid me goodbye in the Philippine International Airport. My flight is bound for Vancouver, Canada. I took that big decision to find out what blessings are in store for me in a new country. On our way to the airport, I still was receiving business calls from my office staffs and text messages wishing me “Good luck" and “God bless" from my special friends. Everyone was so quiet in the car except me. When we got in Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA), I have to delay my line up while waiting for my fiancé. When he got in the airport, he gave me a big hug and kiss and that’s when I started to cry. I began hugging Mom & Dad and told them “I love you. "

My Dad didn’t hug me back and I was a bit disappointed because of that. I realized six months later what that coldness meant. I saw my mom crying. When I was inside the airport waiting, I can’t stop crying. I have always been a cry baby and now that I’m on my way to “independence", I can’t even control my tears!!!! Coming out of my shell wasn’t that easy but I’m determined to discover a whole new world. I have no relatives, no family in Vancouver, and the people who picked me up in the airport are total strangers.

Upon arrival, in Vancouver (YVR) International airport, the immigration office was swamped with “immigrants" just like me. It took me two hours before I finally got interviewed by the officer and released from the NAIA – airplane – YVR for almost 17 hours trip. I sent a text message to my parents right away that I arrived safely. I felt that they didn’t sleep well while I was inside the plane.

Christmas of that same year, December 25, 2004, came the answer why my Dad didn’t hug me back in the airport when I left. He sent me a message “how lonely and sad we are celebrating Christmas just the two of them in the house. " My brother left for Sydney, Australia in July to follow my sister in law who left in June. My parents were basically in the airport for three (3) consecutive months! My mom said “Why does every one of you have to leave?" With these messages were words “I love you Anak. " (I love you my child) My parents are not the affectionate type. They prefer to show their love by actions not through words. This made me burst into tears!!! Until now that I’m sharing this story, it still makes me cry knowing how hard it is to be alone. My Dad didn’t hug me back because he was trying to hide his feelings and he’s still on stage of denial that his only daughter is leaving.

This whole story is a realization how important family love is. The support system they give us. How we take them for granted knowing that they are just there whenever we need them. Those made me wonder how many times I took them for granted, answered them back, and ignored them. It’s been almost two years now that I’m away from home but my parent’s love keeps me going to achieve my life’s vision and mission.

Lourdes migrated in Vancouver, BC Canada and started being an Infopreneur. Other than managing a direct selling company, Lourdes is also into seminar business where she formally got her training from John Childers ( ) in the United States.

Lourdes brings to the world of entrepreneurship a range of business advisory and managerial experiences in the field of audit, strategic management, administrative planning, and marketing. as a CPA, she was part of the external audit team where she had financial, compliance, and planning audit stints, and income tax preparation for clients at SyCip, Gorres, Velayo & Co.

Lourdes earned her Masters degree in Business Administration (MBA) for Middle Managers at the Ateneo Graduate School of Business and her Bachelor of Science in Accountancy at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines where she graduated cum laude. In addition to her business and advisory firm, she is also one of the stockholders of Travel & Tours Specialists Inc.

Contact Lourdes at


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