I came to Denmark in 1998 with my husband and children, and we were granted asylum after six months. There was war in Somalia, and I came to a country with a language I did not understand. I was sad and missed my family. I cried a lot. It was tough. But when I got a job and new colleagues, the joy came back.
Today I don’t feel foreign. I have a Danish passport, and I have given birth to children in Denmark. They have grown up here, and I have worked here for many years. I have given birth to seven children in total, three of them in Somalia, and four in Denmark. Now I also have five grandchildren.
I’m single, because I got divorced from my husband.
I said to myself: “Now you have to think for yourself. Now you have to take care of yourself. You have to be strong. And you have to work and make money. You have to fight for your children’s sake, so they can have a good life”.
I got up very early in the morning, and worked from 5.00 am to 7:30 am, while the kids were asleep. Then I went home and followed the kids to school. After sleeping three or four hours, I worked again. I worked as a cleaner for eight years, and I have also worked at Burger King.
It makes me happy that I made it, and it makes me happy that all my kids wants to do something with their lives. All of them graduated high school, and they want to go further. They study for their edu- cation. I’ve taught them how to manage themselves. Today, I work in a shop and help others as a Neighborhood Mother. I’m happy with my life, but when I hear about bombs in Somalia, it hurts my heart. I think of my family.
49 / female / single / children / works in a shop / Silkeborg / from Somalia / came to Denmark in 1998 / residence permit same year