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The Story of How I Moved to the US and Made Getting a Visa Easy

I'm Catie!

I'm a lover of mixing the spiritual with the strategic, and sharing my ongoing quest for growth and expansion.  I share what I learned, what I would do differently, and what's helped so that it might help you too.

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I never meant to move to NYC.

And a caveat to that, I certainly never meant to move to Hoboken, which is where I now live. Hoboken is directly across the Hudson River from the West Village in Manhattan. It’s a 7 minute subway ride to the West Village, a 20 minute drive to the airport, and has the most beautiful waterfront area that makes this Scorpio water baby so calm. It reminds me SO much of Toronto, and I can now see why for me, it’s where I’m supposed to be living right now.

Even before I met Chris, my vision was always that I would split my time between Toronto and NYC.

People would ask me what I planned to do in the future when that was no longer feasible, but I thought that it could be possible indefinitely. I had met quite a few people over the years who also maintained residences in two cities, and NYC to Toronto seemed like nothing compared to people committed to a bi-coastal lifestyle.

That was – until the Universe moved me and I had to surrender.

Phase 1 – I started to feel like I was being pushed out of Toronto but didn’t know why

Early 2020, I started to feel this intuitive shift happening where I knew I was being pulled out of Toronto. It was weird – I could feel the energy shifting, but mentally couldn’t understand it.

It’s like the feeling of if you were dating someone and you could feel them pulling back and you don’t want to break up, but know something is going to happen.

During that time, I acted on that intuition only by leading my final Circle in Toronto in January, 2020. At that Circle, I said “I’m stopping Circles here in person for a while because I think I’m being moved out of Toronto, but I’m not sure why yet or when.”

During that time, I booked a 3 week trip to NYC to test the waters of what it would be like spending more time there.

What I found was: I actually loved it.

Things Started to Change

From a more tangible perspective, in January, 2020, the yoga studio that had been such a pillar of my community and was around the corner from my apartment stated that they were shutting down.

The spin studio I always went to quietly announced that they, too, were shutting down and moving locations.

Construction began across the street for a new condo building that was drilling and hammering early in the morning every morning.

I started to feel frustrated by the partying that was happening in my condo building and how many people coming and going there always were.

Even though I had loved my apartment and where I lived for the 6 years before that, suddenly the things that kept me rooted started to get uprooted.

The yoga studio and spin studio were two of my community hubs, and without them there, I didn’t feel as connected to my neighbourhood anymore.

In addition, while it never used to bother me to have such a busy condo building right in the heart of a tonne of bars and restaurants, it started to bother me and I used to want to just sleep somewhere quiet, where there wasn’t yelling and honking every night.

Then – My Parents Need to Move In and My Flight Gets Cancelled

While I was gone, my parents had a renovation they needed done in their house and asked if they could crash in my Toronto apartment and if I could stay in the US. This now meant that I was going to be out of my apartment for most of February, while my parents moved in.

I agreed.

I was a bit apprehensive about spending basically another month away, but went with it.

Late in January, I went on a trip to Hawaii with some girlfriends, and was looking forward to having a week in Toronto before I went back to NYC. I was surrendering to the flow of the Universe which seemed to be pulling me out of Toronto.

But then…my flight got delayed because of a plane malfunction. It turned out that they would need a day to source the broken part, and then we could fly back. Because of the Hawaiian time change, this meant that by the time I landed in Toronto, I only had 4 days there.

The Universe was starting to peel back on my time there!

Then…My Apartment Is No Longer The Same

My parents moved in for February, and when they left, were in a rush. They had left everything disorganized, left a tonne of their stuff and boxes from their house strewn about the apartment, and the whole thing was a total mess.

I finally walked back into my apartment early March, 2020 and was so excited to finally be back in my sacred cocoon…but the energy had totally shifted.

Not only did it not feel like my apartment because of all the new stuff in it, but the energy felt different. Either I had changed or the apartment had, but either way, it didn’t feel like my apartment anymore and I couldn’t wait to get out of there.

Covid Happens

Soon after I was back in Toronto, I went to Florida to visit my parents who were down there for the month of March.

While I was there, covid exploded, and the borders shut down.

Chris and I had easily been back and forth between Toronto and the US, but with the border, we had to decide where to be.

Since we were already in the US, and because Chris’s apartment was bigger than mine, we decided to just stay put where we were.

The Border Stays Closed – Quarantines Continue

During this time, the border stayed closed down and most things were in lockdown.

I was forced, finally, to stay away from Toronto long enough to have to root somewhere else.

The first time Chris and I crossed the border after covid was in August, and it was a complicated process to ensure we had the right paperwork in secondary screening to prove we were eligible to cross.

The interesting thing was, every time I crossed the border, Toronto felt different. All cities did.

I suddenly had this lack of familiarity with it that I didn’t expect, which made the experience both unnerving but also easier to surrender to.

Why the Universe Moved Me

When people now asked why I moved, the answer is: I didn’t mean to – it just happened.

Which is true.

I didn’t try and make this happen for myself.

Instead, I followed my intuition, stayed present, and let everything unfold.

Each step of the way, I was clearly shown that I was being moved, and had the choice to stay rooted or flow in a new direction.

I always trust that the Universe is moving us to where we need to be, and that this must mean that there are reasons why I’m not supposed to be in Toronto anymore.

I really live by a mantra of “I do not perceive my best interests.”

This means, my mind has preferences of where it wants to be and how it thinks I should be living, but ultimately, the Universe is going to guide us and if we go with the flow of what’s unfolding, we will always be guided to something even more amazing that what we could have thought of.

If it had been up to my mind, I NEVER would have let go of Toronto. Logically, it makes no sense to walk away from such a gorgeous and livable city, but also a city I was born in and have built a life and a massive community and family in.

I still logically can’t explain it to anyone logically, and yet, the Universe moved me elsewhere and I’m grateful for that change now.

While I absolutely love Toronto, I really have benefited from the growth of having had to meet all new people, experience all new things, an endless explore a new city and new town. While I would have loved to stay comfortable in the city I grew up in, I think my soul wanted the expansion of this uncomfortable new edge of having to be in entirely new landscape and a new community.

I just really love how at ease I feel here. I love the little cocoon I have with Chris here and how rooted our life is together here. I love that his friends moved away around the same time I moved here, and how we got forced, as a result, to build a life the two of us together.

Lifestyle wise, I really thrive here. I love the waterfront and how amazing my running route is, the quiet calm, kindness and safety of Hoboken, and the ability to continually explore Manhattan and all her intensity, glory, restaurants, and shows.

In addition, it’s really easy for me to imagine having a family and kids here. I have had more than one intuitive share with me that there’s a really strong karma between at least one of my kids and NYC, and so I’m also open to the fact that I got moved here because it’s where my kids want to be born.

While it was really hard to walk away from Toronto, I also see how, at this stage in my life, there’s even more things for me to explore and do here that really light me up, and so am embracing it.

Getting a US Visa

The last part of this puzzle was trusting that I was meant to move, but not knowing how to get a visa.

What this resulted in was me, for 3 years, staying on back to back visitor’s visas and have literally no issues in doing so. As a Canadian, I always thought I could only be in the US for 6 months of the year, but that’s not true. You get a new 6 month visa every time you cross, and there’s no rules about how long you can be in the US.

With that being said, Canada, and more specifically, Canadian healthcare coverage, DOES care, which is something for Canadians to be aware of. However, the Universe took care of that issue for me when Chris’s company said that would extend full USA health coverage to me for no cost.

The US wants to make sure that you are still a resident of Canada, and so since I maintained a residency there, I was eligible to continue to have visitors visas.

I did get pulled into secondary screening once, but it was there that the Universe totally had my back and the guy shared with me ways that you can fly under the radar and get around some of the rules, which I then applied and didn’t get stopped once for the next 8 months.

I explored every visa option there was, outside of getting ongoing visitor’s visas, and none of them felt easeful. I was stressed out by the possibility and paperwork of all of them, and so just stayed true to myself that when I did get a visa, it would be easeful and fun.

This went against literally EVERYONE’s advice, but I just knew I would know when and how to get a visa and kept setting the intention for myself that it would be easeful.

Well! Fast forward to when I decided to follow up with my lawyers, and we ended up figuring out a visa process that felt really good for me.

Interestingly, this was a visa I knew of, but didn’t think I was eligible for, until the lawyer I spoke to advised otherwise.

Sure enough, every step of the process of putting together the paperwork and submitting it was so EASY.

When I crossed and applied for the visa it was also EASY. The border agent literally asked me no questions except for where I was planning to live, and I got my passport stamped and was on my way!

This all was just another way of showing that things are always unfolding just as they are supposed to, and one something is meant to be easeful – it will be.

Moral of the Story

The moral of this whole story is to TRUST that things will be easeful when they are meant to feel easeful, and to let yourself be moved to a new place if you are feeling the shift to. The Universe always knows what it’s doing, and it’s leading you to more joy and alignment every time.

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  1. Samanta says:

    I LOVE this post!! Reading this right now was exactly what I needed! Thanks for sharing 🙂

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3/5 generator. scorpio sun/rising + capricorn moon. adventure lover.

Hi, I'm Catie. I love humans, chatting, and how to live life of meaning and purpose.  

I started this blog as a way for me to share more of my writing about everything from how to strengthen your intuition, find your purpose, and call in partnership, to my favourite travel destinations and tips. 

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