Finding out that our 190 Visas had been granted (RJ)



Land of new opportunities

On 16 October 2018, at 08.25, we received notification from George that our visas had been granted… I knew exactly what was in the email. Titled.

Subject: VISAS GRANTED!

Every morning, my husband wakes up before me, around 5am and he will check our family email to see if there had been any developments in our application, but this morning was different; we woke up together and started our morning together, brushed our teeth together, we showered, got dressed and talked about what we had planned for the day ahead. We often listened to motivational videos in the morning to put us in the right frame of mind to get through the day, successfully, no matter what the day had in store for us. We strongly believe that you should start the day how you mean to go on and for us, that means staying focused on what our priorities are, thinking about and doing what makes us happy; keeping a positive mindset. There was nothing that really stood out for us this morning, as I headed off to my office in central London and he, Ahmed, continued to get our son ready for school, before dropping him off and heading to work himself.

For me, it was a typical morning. I had, pretty much, back to back meetings; a load of emails to work through; a paper to write for our senior management team and a few pastoral calls to make to my team. As a manager, well-being has always been at the top of my list of things to focus on, because taking a holistic view on staff welfare and not just seeing the people as a role within the Charity, for me, is a key component to my management style. If your team are happy and their well-being is taken care of, then the rest can be figured out or will fall into place. As I worked through this pretty normal list of things I needed to complete, it dawned on me, I had not checked my personal emails the whole morning. This was out of the ordinary as we were, at this stage of the application, pretty obsessed with moving to Australia and checking if our Visas were back was always at the forefront of our minds. So, I had 10 minutes before my next meeting. I had to grab a quick bite and scan my personal emails. My heart stopped!

As I scrolled through my inbox, looking at the usual offers from Boohoo, Groupon, Travel Supermarket etc… something stood out, four consecutive emails from George, with weird titles and an attachment on each.

FWD: IMMI Grant Notification 8:27

FWD: IMMI Grant Notification 8:27

FWD: IMMI Grant Notification 8:27

FWD: IMMI Grant Notification 8:25

I was confused! What did this mean? I continued scrolling down.

Then, there it was!

TO: Visas GRANTED 8:25

I literally let out a little yelp, then I remembered I was in an open planned office and tried to pull myself together. I was shaking and I didn’t expect to feel like this. I did not really know what I would feel like when we finally got the Visas, but I did not expect to feel scared and excited at the same time.

The first thing I thought about was, how do I tell the hubby? We often spoke about how we would tell each other once the 190 Visas were granted. We had loads of big ideas about how we would surprise each other, however, when the time came, all those ideas went out of the window and all I wanted to do was tell him ASAP, tell him that our next chapter was about to begin and for him to have the same feelings I was having. I called him at work and as expected I got his voicemail, being a teacher I was used to getting through to his voicemail, I didn’t leave a message as selfishly I wanted to hear the joy in his voice. Before I could get hold of him, I needed to go back into a meeting. I have no idea what this meeting was about, who it was with and what was said… it went past in a blur and all I could think about was Ahmed calling me back so I could tell him the good news.

After what felt like an age, he called me back… “GUESS WHAT?” I shared the amazing news and his colourful response told me he was over the moon. He thought I was joking at first but soon realised our hard work had paid the dividend. We agreed we would go for dinner that night to enjoy the news and think about next steps.

As I read through the visa paperwork, again and again, and again, I noticed that there was an ‘entry before date’ and this date was a March 2019 date, which did not leave us much time between getting the visas granted and having to enter Australia. But this was OK with me because I was ready to go in December 2018, which was two months after the issue date. My hubby is a lot more sensible than I and suggested that we look at other suitable time frames and to ‘think sensibly’ about the best plan of action. As usual, he was right. We agreed that we would go in the February half term to allow us more time to sort out what we need to sort out in the UK. It also brought us a little more time to continue saving. We are both fortunate to have good paying jobs and pushing our departure to a February date allowed us to save more money and to do some planning from the UK. It also gave us time to share the news with friends and family and to give our children, especially our daughter, time to get their heads around the fact that this is actually happening. This was going to be their last year in good old London, Stockwell.

Telling friends and family didn’t go exactly as we had expected. At times I was left confused about some of the reactions. I will go into more detail about how our friends and family took the news in a future blog.

Thank you for reading this far and for joining us on this journey.

peace, love and happiness.

The Jalloh family

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