Sentimental story

An Immigrant’s Story

Nov 06, 2021

Click, Click, Click, Click goes the keyboard. 

A symphony of work sounds. 

And in the farthest corner of the room, Alex is working his heart out. 

“No time to rest, “ he thinks. 

“So much to do….” 

In a span of a year and a half, Alex created a small empire filled with portraits and illustrations by talented artists across the globe. 

Who would have thought that a portraits company established in the middle of a pandemic would go far? 

But it did, and it kept on packing surprises. 

Because the world kept coming back for more portraits and more illustrations from thousands of individuals and Forbes 500 elites.

A stark difference from six years ago when a European immigrant with one bag of clothes came to the US to start his American dream. 

It was undoubtedly a long way.

And there’s no way but up! 

Click, Click, Click, Click goes the keyboard. 

A seemingly endless tirade of work. 

Then… 

“Done,” said Alex, pleased with himself after finishing so many tasks for the day. He held his cat, Ivan, on his lap and absent-mindedly pet him thinking about home far off in Europe where his mother and sister live separate lives and yet so much connected by a familial love for each other.

Because when empires are built, things we love take their toll. And for Alex, not going home and seeing his family was one of his many sacrifices. 

It would seem to be far more interesting to narrate if Alex was raised by wolves and entered the human world determined to seek his place in the world, but that would be a complete lie.

Like so many of us, Alex is a normal human being who went through extraordinary lengths to find the happiness he deserves. 

He was born into a broken home where his parents were continuously separated by fate; fate in the guise of Alex’s father’s parents who hated his mother for a more profound but petty reason, especially now when that reason is meaningless in a borderless world. 

When they finally succeeded in separating their family, Alex’s maternal grandparents came to their rescue, and a blended family was formed. Though there were large holes to fill, Alex’s grandparents did a splendid job of it. 

They took Alex and his older sister to school. 

They cook together. 

Listen to every woe and whisper from the heart. 

And though Alex’s mother worked three jobs just to support their tiny family, it was as if it was whole again, thanks to the unconditional love that their grandparents gave them. 

I would prefer to say they lived happily ever after, racing to where the sun disappears, but that’s not exactly what happened. Some time passed, and Alex now is a young man. Time had gotten its grip on Alex’s grandfather. His heart gave way so many times, and though he fought grandly, time ultimately won this battle as he succumbed to Alzheimer’s. 

Tragedy brings great changes. And Alex was feeling it. He needed to set his sail southwards to where dreams are harbored on the shores of the US. He felt these changes were needed to seek a better life and better opportunity for himself and his family. 

And though it was with a heavy heart and a spirit-filled determination that he took the course and left his mother, sister, grandmother, and pet cat behind. 

In the US, things were finally looking up for Alex. He had a great job and was establishing multiple businesses that were seeing results. And yet another tragedy struck when in the middle of his success, his grandmother died.

It seemed Alex kept on dealing with deaths in his family. But worst when a conflict on visas had him stuck in the US, preventing him from seeing his family. 

It seems a low blow, but to Alex credit, he harbors on. Knowing not to stop when he feels defeated. He kept going and knowing that this triumph was not for himself but for a family rooting for him to succeed no matter what. 


***********

Alex stares at space. Then he glances back at a picture of his family and wonders when he will be seeing them in person again. True, they facetime often, but it can never replace a warm hug that he misses so much. 

Unless… 

Alex was struck with an idea. It filled him from the top to his insides until he was bursting with action. He contacted one of his top artists, Kichi.

And a plan was set in motion… 

Three weeks later, Alex mom came home, and there was a surprise waiting for her. She wondered why there was a big canvas in the living room, and she opened it gingerly at first, then eagerly at the end. 

There was the entire family on the canvas. Alex’s  Grandparents in all their former glory. They look shiny and new, as if they haven’t departed from this world. Alex’s mom wore a faint smile similar to her son, who was holding the family cat that had since left this world as well. And his sister was on their side, all smiles at an invisible cameraman. 

It was a truly epic family reunion build by separate pictures combined for this effect. 

Because Alex understood the power of portraits that connect us even when we are worlds apart. 

Portraits immortalized love. 

Those departed ones never really left this world but instead depict that they are just watching over us, proud of us for being the persons we are now. 

And such was the power of this portrait that it made Alex’s mom’s day and left a smile on her face that wouldn’t disappear soon enough. 

Click, Click, Click Click goes the keyboard.

Back to work with renewed purpose 

The Co-founder of Covatar works with a heart filled with satisfaction…

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