|The much awaited visa grant|
Three years later I was climbing the walls in frustration and he still hadn't applied for the skilled migrant visa he'd promised to apply for - even though it promised no guarantee of a visa within any particular time-frame.
Then we found out we were pregnant with Pipkin. Immediate change of priorities. I found another visa we could apply for - family member of NZ citizen and we submitted it as soon as we could. I was keen to have my baby in Australia* and wanted to get there before airlines start denying you boarding...
The estimated waiting time for visa processing was 2-3 months which in the worst case scenario gave us a window of a few weeks between visa grant/denial and third trimester travel ban.
We lost Pipkin three days after we posted the visa application but that didn't change the time-frame (thank God). Mr Duncan's medical did. He had ridiculously high blood pressure which was way outside the permissible guidelines for medical approval.
When he told me I cried - and put him on a strict blood pressure and weight loss 'diet'. I say diet but it mostly involved him not buying sandwiches from Eat or Pret for lunch and taking food from home or looking at offerings from Crussh. Oh, and eat no bread or dairy in front of me given he is a bread and chocolate milk addict..
A flurry of letters between his GP and the embassy doctors ensued where the embassy doctors requested his high blood pressure history and his GP said there was no history and that he had 'white coat syndrome'. Which he does, but he has also put on 5 stone in the past three years since we returned to London and the rat race. I expected the best case scenario would be that they would ask him to re-test. The embassy sent the results to Australia for 'consideration'. Who knows how long that would take?
Mr Duncan got the email yesterday. Visa has been granted with nil restrictions.
When he told me I cried. With joy. Relief?
There is a lot to organise what with households and cars and bank accounts but I hope we're there and settled by the end of the year.
Oh, I'm still having stupid symptoms but caved in and got a BFN. Sigh. Before I ever got pregnant, I always thought I could trust my body.
*and this is no reflection on the UK medical system** which has been nothing but good to me in its own way. Mostly I didn't want to have a newborn in London when the weather was crap and I had no support system. To be fair, my support system in our chosen city of Melbourne is not high - I know a couple of people, but the weather and public transport are better and worst case scenario I can fly a friend from NZ over in less than four hours.
** We had the same conversations about Poppy, but had agreed we'd give his new company three years, so Poppy was always going to be a UK baby.