She'd waited nine years. In 2007, the Iranian woman had been lucky, young enough to secure a United States visa through an uncle's sponsorship. Her older sister was not.
They said goodbye at the Tehran airport. The whole scene felt like a movie, Mania Asadizadeh said: As she boarded the plane, her sister, Mona, cried and pressed her hands against the glass.
"I'll see you soon," Mona yelled.
That was nearly 10 years ago. They spent the next decade working toward a reunion. Mona traveled to Turkey and back for interviews with embassy officials. She filled out reams of paperwork. A few months ago, her application was approved.
On Monday morning, visa in hand, Mona tried to board a plane to Portland.
Iranian airport officials stopped her at the gate. In an executive order President Donald Trump says will keep "bad people" out, the United States had banned Iranians from traveling to the country for three months.
Immigrants and refugees living in Portland say they are in a tailspin after Trump suspended the visas of citizens of seven countries, including Iran. Catholic Charities of Oregon officials say they had made reservations for 30 refugees to travel to the state next month -- most of whom are from Somalia, Sudan and Iraq, countries blocked by the executive order. Other refugees said they have family stuck in Jordan, Kenya and the United Arab Emirates waiting to reunite with those who already made the journey.
Mania Asadizadeh, a Portland State University graduate student, said she has never felt so scared or devastated in her life.
"I was so excited to finally see my sister," Mania said. "She waited nine years to legally come to this country. She has already been vetted. And then at the last minute ..."
Mania's words dissolved into tears.