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As lockdowns lift across Australia, families are being reunited. But not us migrants | Maliha Aqueel

I hope my daughter won’t be cutting her first birthday cake knowing no other family besides her mum and dad It was at the 3am feed last week I think, when I finally accepted it. Let’s book someplace on the south coast to get away for a few days over the holidays, I said to my husband who had just brought S* to me after a nappy change. For months, I had been resisting booking anything over Christmas, holding out hope that I may be able to go home over the holidays – like we have every year since we migrated to Australia five years ago. But this year it’s different, different because of the pandemic but also because my daughter was born in July. My mum had planned to come for the birth, to care for me, to listen and to give advice. She would have cooked for me, as she always has, in times of difficulty and in times of celebration. Nothing a hot, home cooked meal can’t fix. But as I was about to apply for her visa in April – we brown migrants have to plan ahead – the lockdowns started. The visa application reminder popped up for days on my phone until I finally cancelled it. I had held out hope but eventually accepted the lockdowns were here to stay. Continue reading...

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