How does a person become a citizen? How does living in another country change you? Shared language is surely a precursor to it all. Interaction with natives comes next, followed by information spewed by popular media, books, movies, music, and other cultural events. One just becomes it, slowly and steadily.
Living in Brazil is no easy chore. There are daily reminders of corruption, bad infrastructure, substandard education, goods that cost twice as much as they should, and on and on. I have forfeited opportunities to live in countries with a better standard of living, America (as in US of A) for instance. Earlier due to the links with my birth place, and later due to my wife and kids. I know other people who have done the same. Figuratively speaking, I don’t believe the American dream should be realized only in North America.
I left for Brazil with love in my heart, a will to work that my education inculcated in me and very little of anything else. Everything that I have today has been given to me by this marvelous country I have adopted. Nothing that I have here has, at least materially, been inherited. If any one wants to remind me about my Brazilian identity, I want it to be in a way that fills me with pride, not as a sacrifice of any kind.