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get-attachment-10.aspx“No tears, Donna!” I told myself when the civil servant handed me our children’s German passports at Rathaus Steglitz this morning. I’m cultivating the German art of appearing totally dispassionate while conducting public business and managed a brief, impersonal smile as I grasped the little burgundy booklets in my hand.

It was a short and simple ending to a process that began three and a half years ago. Avery and Olivia have been German citizens since 2011, but we waited to apply for their passports until Sam also received his citizenship (see Hurray for Sam!). Now the three of them are ready for the world. Olivia will have a chance to use her German passport next week when she goes to London with the International Schools Theatre Association.

I was recently dismayed to learn that 3,000 Americans renounced their citizenship last year. According to CNN Money, “the numbers for 2013 represent a dramatic spike — triple the average for the previous five years.” Tax consequences of our dual citizenship aside (and boy do we need to get up to speed on that), I remain first and foremost an American. Time will tell how our three children will feel about their six passports.