Immigrant or Expatriate

Do you prefer immigrant or expatriate? Perhaps it sounds shallow, even facetious.

I’m not sure, especially when I read words like these:

Do not weep for the dead or mourn for him,
But weep continually for the one who goes away;
For he will never return
Or see his native land.¹

I suppose immigrant implies a willing choice. Expatriate, an enforced emigration. But what if you were a child and the decision was made for you? Or what if you willingly left to find a job, a livelihood, an opportunity unavailable in your place of birth when otherwise you would have stayed?

What are you then?

Immigrant. Expatriate. They both mean loss. The inevitable result of the first loss: Eden.

¹Jeremiah 22:10, New American Standard Bible


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