Dancing with the Stars pro Peta Murgatroyd revealed in an emotional post to her Instagram that she is officially a US citizen, over a decade after moving to the United States.
Murgatroyd joined Dancing with the Stars as a member of the troupe for season 12 back in 2011, and became a regular member of the pro cast later that same year when she returned for season 13. The New Zealand-born dancer has been a featured pro on 12 seasons of the hit show between 2011 to 2019, taking only a few seasons off for various reasons including injury and when she was pregnant with her son Shai, whom she shares with her husband Maks Chmerkovskiy, a former Dancing with the Stars pro. Of the seasons she's been a pro, Murgatroyd and her partners have won the coveted Mirror Ball trophy twice. Though winning Dancing with the Stars is exciting, it's hard to compare to the feeling of becoming a citizen in a country you moved to nearly 15 years prior.
Murgatroyd took to her Instagram this past week (via People) to share photos from her swearing in ceremony, revealing that "after countless US Visas starting from 2006 and the last 5 years with a Green Card," she is now an official citizen of the United States. The dancer describes herself as "a girl from little Perth with a big dream of being ‘someone’" which is a dream she considers herself to have achieved but says that wouldn't have been possible "without the United States giving me the chance to succeed and live in the best country in the world." Murgatroyd acknowledges that the US is where she established her dancing career, where she met her husband, and where her first child was born, and she writes that "this will always be home now." Murgatroyd's brother-in-law and fellow Dancing with the Stars pro Val Chmerkovskiy was one of many to comment his support for Murgatroyd's milestone, writing "Congratulations!! Everything about this post is exactly what makes this country the best." You can read Murgatroyd's full Instagram post below:
View this post on Instagram
Yesterday was an emotional day for me. After countless US Visas starting from 2006 and the last 5 years with a Green Card, I am officially a United States citizen. I’m getting misty eyed writing this, because I haven’t reflected on my life up until this point. I went deep down memory lane and I cried at the ceremony and then really cried in private. Memories surfaced that I had forgotten about, wishes that I had made as a child in my backyard with a full moon and promises that I made to myself and my family. Everything came full circle and here I was sitting in an auditorium with 1000 people, with my Ukrainian/American husband and my American son....a girl from little Perth with a big dream of being ‘someone’. I dreamt of performing on the worlds biggest stage, I dreamt of people knowing my name, I dreamt of being the best at my craft, I dreamt of making a difference in the world and most of all I dreamt of making my family proud and proving that I could do it at the highest level. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I love the life I created, but it wouldn’t be possible without the United States giving me the chance to succeed and live in the best country in the world, where dreams really do come true. This country gave me my career, it’s where I found the love of my life, and it’s where my first child was born. This will always be home now. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I looked around at the auditorium full of immigrants....their eyes were longingly filled with hope, faith and belief. I am an immigrant too. I will always be one, and I’m proud of it. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ Thank you USA for accepting me, I will continue to work and treat this country with the upmost respect. I will honor the flag and The Pledge of Allegiance. I don’t take this lightly. God Bless America 🇺🇸 ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ @uscis #USCitizens #NewUSCitizen
On this season of Dancing with the Stars, Murgatroyd was partnered with NBA player Lamar Odom, who is probably best known in the realm of reality TV for being Khloe Kardashian's ex-husband. Though Murgatroyd and Odom were working hard to get the former Los Angeles Lakers player's scores, he was eliminated in the past week after receiving the lowest combined score from the judges, who scored him 20/40 in total. Though his time on the show was cut short, Odom speaks highly of pro-partner, calling her "an amazing teacher" and describing her as the "Kobe Bryant of ballroom dancing." Odom finishes by saying that he now considers Murgatroyd to be his family, writing that "I have a sister. I never had a sister before."
Following the birth of their son, Murgatroyd and her husband Maks have said they're interested in giving Shai a sibling, so Murgatroyd's early elimination from the show could be a blessing in disguise if she's looking to have a baby before the next season, which would likely premiere in September 2020. Whether it's new children or the possible return of Chmerkovskiy to Dancing with the Stars, there is lots of potential for Murgatroyd and her family on the horizon, especially now that she's an official citizen of the United States!
Dancing with the Stars airs Mondays at 8pm EST on ABC.