A New Beginning
With a big smile, Tulashi Subedi explains that his name means the "incomparable one." Of course, now Tulashi may have to give up his reign as "the incomparable one" in favor of his three month old son, Dev. A cheerful, happy baby, Dev was born on January 16th of this year, reinforcing Tulashi and Sabitra's feeling that sixteen is a lucky number for them. The couple, refugees from Bhutan, first arrived in Dallas on April 16th, 2009.
Welcomed by the IRC, they were provided with an apartment in the Vickery Meadow area, food, clothing and assistance in finding work. "IRC has been wonderful", he said, "IRC did everything for us." Tulashi explored the area on foot, learning street names. Both he and Sabitra were puzzled that "they never saw people walking, only cars.” It was a far cry from the camp life they had become used to in Nepal. Both Tulashi and Sabitra lived in refugee camps for seventeen years. Tulashi recalls holding his father's hand when, at age ten, they walked through the night to the India-Bhutan border. There, three buses heading for the Nepal border were filled with the refugees who watched their villages and homes burn.
Because Tulashi has an older brother, Raghu, who made it to America, he was aware of the economic crisis here but he and his wife have hopes of "having their own home" by the time Dev is five. By then, they are hopeful that more members of their family will be able to come. Sabitra anxiously awaits her parents and family.
Tulashi and Subitra knew that finding work in Dallas would be the key to their success in Texas. Within a few weeks, IRC found a job for Sabitra and she worked until she was 8 months pregnant. Tulashi patiently waited for the "right job" and now, thanks to IRC, he has progressed through a series of jobs to begin a training program at Texas Instruments.
The family is especially grateful to their volunteer mentor, Paige Gilbreath, who helped them learn more about American culture and feel at home in Dallas. And they are happy to have reunited with several families from their camp who are now living nearby. "We are able to observe our holidays, cook our food and speak our language," explains Tulashi. This is especially meaningful for Tulashi's mother, Hari, who does not speak much English but she is able to walk to the nearby apartments of old friends from the camp. With the help of their friends from home, their mentor, and the IRC staff, Tulashi and Subitra are confident about their future and looking forward to their new life in America.