My Fate in Someone Else's Hands

  • Photographer
    Edyta Kielian
  • Prize
    Official Selection
  • Date of Photograph

Very little about our lives is constant or totally certain, and while we have control over many things, we can’t control everything that happens to us...


I left Tarnow, Poland and arrived in Chicago in 1995. I have chosen this country and I love living here. This is my home; my children were born here. America is the home I wanted for them. I truly respect and appreciate this country; however immigration is not just a geographical change, it also involves change in all aspects of life, including social, cultural, environmental, and behavioral. This causes several traumatic events that negatively impact the mental well-being of immigrants. Nobody’s future is certain, but immigrants face extra uncertainties due to the hazy half-and-half status we hold between our home and adopted countries. I have met hundreds of immigrants, and I can say with absolute certainty that no two immigrants have experienced being an immigrant in the same way. This is even true within my own family. I have applied for permanent residence three times and been refused twice. I have scrupulously followed every immigration regulation, paid all my taxes, filed all the papers I had to file, and have not so much as received a parking ticket. I have experienced these fears and frustrations. They leave you feeling like your life is not your own, that you are not living life at all but rather living a series of arbitrary immigration rules. The feeling of helplessness is with you always. But one day, it finally happened. I have been waiting for over 20 years, but I am no longer an undocumented immigrant. My biggest dream has come true, but many of my friends are still waiting ... For this photographic project, I invited people who had or still have the status of undocumented immigrants. Also, the phrases are from official documents or words spoken by these individuals.

You can create multiple entries, and pay for them at the same time.
Just go to your History, and select multiple entries that you would like to pay for.