Student Visa? I Could So Easily Freak Out Right Now.

27 days until I start school! EEEEK! I am doing my very best to get ready for school while also working and I have been frequently finding myself right on the edge of panic. Presently, I am in Colorado Springs for work. I promised to stay on through the end of the project and that means coming back to CO, living in a hotel room, and working 50-60 hours a week for 3 weeks. When I get back to Wisconsin, I will have 2 weeks before leaving for Grand Cayman and I AM SO NOT PREPARED.

There is more to do than packing and buying clothes for the school uniform, both of which I have been doing little by little. The immigration paperwork required for my student visa is crazy. The school e-mailed me the list of things I would need along with very specific instructions and in the very short time prior to moving (the first time), I was able to get some of it together. I went to the doctor for the most invasive physical of my life. I was poked, prodded, measured, measured again, got a chest x-ray, HIV test, and a multitude of other required labs. I am lucky enough to have gone to a practice that has an integrated imaging and lab area so that saved me a trip. The PA that was examining me dutifully filled out my examination paperwork and said she would fill out the remainder when they got the radiology and lab results back. When I went to collect them, her name was printed and signed on each page as instructed and full reports from the lab and x-ray were included. HOWEVER, the very in-depth instructions I received also clearly stated that a physician stamp was also required. So, I asked and was told repeatedly that the PA didn’t have anything like that. The practice is small and rural and I was short on time so I took my paperwork and headed home where I e-mailed the school and explained the situation. I received a very curt email back from the immigration specialist telling me that it either needed to be stamped or notarized. Sure…I decided I would come back to that.  In the meantime I had scoured the internet to find out the steps I needed to take to get the “criminal report” needed which is basically just a background check. I found that in Colorado, all of the police departments refer those out to CBI – the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. I filled out the form, got a $13 money order and sent it in.

Fast forward several weeks.

My life has now reached max chaos. We have officially moved across the country, I am working 10 and 11 hour days from home while also sort of trying to unpack, put the new house together, stop my anxiety from making the animals any more anxious….aaaand I haven’t sent in my paperwork yet because there is no stamp and I now live in a different state. Oh good. To quote Rachel (because Friends relates to everything), “I could so easily freak out right now”. So I came up with the best and maybe the most ridiculous idea I could have and had a stamp made on Vistaprint and sent it to the practice. I emailed a new set of paperwork for the PA to re-fill out, sign, and stamp with her brand new stamp and send to me. Which she did. I received my background check letter the same day and sent it all priority mail to the school, feeling very much like I had just climbed Everest and everything was going to be done before I had to leave for CO again. WRONG.

I tracked the envelope which was delivered on a Saturday and the following Monday I sent emails to the immigration person and the director of admissions to make sure they got them. Tuesday I received a less than curt/borderline rude email from the immigration specialist saying that she got them and would be sending back the labs, x-ray report, and background check. “Why?” you ask? The PA did not sign and stamp the labs and x-ray – because she did not read them, why would she? And the background check because it was not notarized. That piece I suppose was my fault as I mis-read the instructions. Well, shit.

Back to the present.

Today is the first day I have had off (my work laptop might be open and on the couch next to me but I am not actually there – it counts) and I have the following things to do:

  • Print out and fill out the new CBI form
  • Go to Walmart and get a money order for $13
  • Go to the post office and over-night said form and money order to the CBI

There are also the non-school related things of: printing, signing, and faxing the agreement for the rental company handling our house here in CO so that the renters can move in this weekend, buying my bridesmaid dress for my brother’s wedding (they don’t have a David’s Bridal in Wisco), and I just got a meeting notification for this afternoon.  Real life + Work + School/Immigration paperwork. I can do it….I think…I could so easily freak out right now….



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