Four years ago today I became a naturalized American citizen. Over the years friends told me "Ros, you need to become a citizen you are more patriotic than many Americans!"
For so long I had delayed this event because my parents were elderly in Australia and I wanted to be able to leave the country in a heartbeat without worrying about a visa. However September 11th. 2001 changed all that and I became very angry at the horrifying attack on America and decided that by taking citizenship I would make my statement of loyalty to my adopted country.
The path to citizenship was not smooth for me because my application was lost for years! You all know the insanity of dealing with government bureaucracy, so you will understand the countless letters and phone calls it took to sort it all out. When at last I had a date set for my interview I received another letter informing me that it had to be delayed but giving no future date?! Another year or so went by with more countless frustrating letters and phone calls until finally I had my interview.
Having studied American history and government with our four sons as they progressed through the school system, I felt fairly confident in taking the test but nevertheless I boned up on it so that I would not miss a single question! There was a total of one hundred possible questions covering basic history and government and I didn't want to miss even one! Call me OCD!
A few months later I received the official letter giving me the date of my "swearing in", scheduled for one day after Australia Day and two days before my actual birthday so we had cause for big celebrations that week.
Here I am in the red jacket taking the oath of allegiance.
Some friends and family after the ceremony.
And here's the proof, the certificate [with the very unflattering govt. photo]. I have covered actual cert. numbers etc. for security reasons!