Hello, my name is Ronie and I’m a migrant. The life of a migrant can be quite a struggle!

A few weeks ago I celebrated my 29th birthday, my third birthday in the Netherlands so far. Somehow I feel like I am ten years older than when I first got here. I wasn’t sure if I should write about this in my blog and open my heart to the public, but one of the purposes of my blog is to share the life experiences of a migrant woman in the NL.

After all, migrants are part of the “new we” that we are all writing about, and so are their experiences, aren’t they?

So it’s true, a lot has changed since I first got here. Now, when I think about myself back then it makes me laugh how I used to take pictures of everything I saw and how I used to get excited from the fall, the spring and the snow… Now, I don’t take so many pictures anymore, and I barely notice the trees outside. In a way it’s true, I got used to live here, I got used to many things here, and I even speak some Dutch with my partner! Silly things, but in Dutch.

In my head I can hear my father, who is a migrant himself, telling me that a “migrant will always be a migrant”, and he is right, I know he is. I still feel it every time, when I am in social, cultural or professional situations. I’m always a foreign no matter what.

The last months were pretty rough for me, since graduation, and with the entire job searching process. I mean looking for a job is always annoying and difficult, but when you are a foreign, it is even worst.

During this process I have been reminded over and over again how deep the cultural differences are, and how much they are difficult to overcome. I am not Dutch, I will never be Dutch, but I’m Ronie, and I’m great and I have so much to offer.

I know the job market is in bad condition, and I can’t really work in Dutch yet, and that it takes time, but it is so hard to stay positive and optimistic. There is no one to blame in this strange situation. I never thought in my life that I will live in the Netherlands, but yet here I am.

You truly never know what will happen in life!

To sum up I would say that I hope one day I will feel more at home in the Netherlands and more welcome. I wish I will get the chance I deserve to get. Till that day comes, I’m trying to stay positive! And hey, if you hear about a job for English speakers let me know. All the best my dear readers!

Yours, Ronie.


Ronie Barel

verhuisde van Israël naar Nederland, activist, blogger

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