“Like a fairy story…”

“I am from Ukraine originally. My family came here in 1992. We had been having a very hard time back then. The 90’s were very difficult there. Our youngest child served in the army before the collapse of the Soviet Union in… I think it was 1992? There was new money… paper money. Russian money. Ukrainian money. Special store for Russian money. Special store for the Ukrainian money. It was all very hard. At that time in Ukraine, we had to get up in the early morning to pay money for tickets that allowed us certain products at the store.

My husband’s brother was living in America, and he made arrangements for us to come over. This country was so good for us, for our family. I don’t know about anyone else, but America was good for our family. Everything here was so very different! I remember going into a store with my husband, and… oh! There were so many things. We came here in December, and everything was… Christmas time! It was like a fairy story.

A few of our relatives still live there. My older son is still in the Ukraine. We get to see him by computer sometimes, but we visited him when he was 40 years old and then again when he was 50. I also have relatives here. One son lives in East Greenbush and has two teenage daughters. Another lives in Saratoga with two boys that are the same age, and my little granddaughter who is 7 months old already. I used to see them more, but now that my husband is very sick, I come here to Troy often to visit him.”