Beautiful Beginning


The Path

In a previous post way back when, I expressed my desire to return to my roots; my roots being my Filipino heritage. Going to the Philippines is something I would absolutely love to do, but the reality is that my current status just wouldn’t allow it. In an ideal world, I would take off an entire month to go so that I could fully immerse myself within the culture and spend time with the extended family that eagerly waits to meet me. You see, my Dad has 7 brothers and sisters who have children, which leaves me with a countless number of cousins who are also having babies now. At this rate, I’ll never be able to keep up! It is uncertain when my visit will take place, but I assure you that one day, I will go.

Reflecting

Until this dream is realized, I have fate to thank for bringing a wonderful opportunity to my life. I’ll give you some background: When I was about 12 or so, my Dad thought that it would be a great idea for me to become pen pals with one of my cousins. In the Philippines, English is their second language so we were able to communicate with no problem. We talked about all sorts of different things and also entertained the idea of one day meeting one another. As time passed, those lines of communication faded, although in recent years we ended up reconnecting via myspace. We didn’t talk very often, but we could if we wanted to. You all know how life gets in the way sometimes. And although I could feel guilty about not nurturing those avenues of communication, I won’t. Not because I don’t care, but because something even better was in store for us!

Something more amazing than I could have imagined in a million years......

She moved to the United States with her soon-to-be husband. Not only did she move to the United States, but she moved to Tennessee of all places. K, her fiancé, is from Kingsport, TN. GUESS WHAT!?!?! Kingsport is only 1.5 hours away from me!!!!!!!!!! I received an email from her with the shocking revelation about a week or so ago. Shortly after receiving the wonderful news, we quickly made plans to finally meet. Cody and I loaded up semi-early on Saturday morning to make the day trip. Since they live a short distance from Bays Mountain Park, I thought that a hike would be a good way of getting better acquainted. Despite their initial apprehension about doing a 2.3 mile hike we all enjoyed the weather, exercise, and especially the company. We are already planning our next outing!

Beautiful Beginning

Never in my wildest dreams did I think that one of my far-away relatives would be here in the states to visit me, much less move within a reasonable driving distance. It is still blowing my mind. We look forward to getting to know the both of them better, and I can't begin to tell you how thrilled I am to have this once in a lifetime opportunity. I will surely not let this go to waste.

I feel that this past weekend was the dawn of a beautiful beginning.

39 comments:

  1. How wonderful! I'm sure you will have a great time getting to know one another. I agree...it must be fate.

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  2. Ohmygod!! Your post gave me goosebumps and that last photo... wooow... I'm in love :-D

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  3. What a wonderful opportunity for you both to get re-connected! Think of all the fun you can have getting to really know one another again!

    As always . . . you're photos are beautiful. I especially like that last shot. You've captured the moment and the memory!

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  4. Marvelous opportunity for the two of you and beautiful photographs as always. I was Wordful about my Wednesday photos too ;--)
    Hugs and blessings,

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  5. how very wonderful!!! that is just fantastic. family is just so meaningful and special to me.

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  6. that is so exciting for you. how wonderful that you get this opportunity to be - really get to know - your cousin.
    btw, you look so pretty in this photo

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  7. LUCKY! THe way you unfolded the story with photos... pure magic. The two of you at the end - GORGEOUS!

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  8. This makes me so happy. Something happens when someone you love (especially family) comes to live closer. It's magic that she can share home with you, and you can share home with her. It's love, really. : )

    You both, are so beautiful.

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  9. I'm very happy for both of you!
    I hope you will continue to grow closer.

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  10. i love everything about this post...your happy story, the amazing colors in the photos and I can hear the excitement in your voice....what a beginning indeed!

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  11. A beautiful post from beginning to end! I'm SO happy for you both. I've read that in many cultures a cousin is seen as close as a sibling. I sure am close to my cousins; they make wonderful friends.
    When I was 21 I drove to Minnesota to meet the Finnish side of my family for the first time -- my father, grandparents (who immigrated here), and half-brothers. As luck would have it, a cousin from Finland was on a summer visit with my grandparents. He was a teacher/hiker/world traveler. We shyly became acquainted and have remained in touch, sometimes only at Christmas, but when the photos come and there is a note with news all the years melt away.
    These cousins are blessings in our lives!

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  12. How wonderful. This post gave me chills......the photos are gorgeous too! You both make a striking pair!

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  13. Ohhh thank you for sharing such a beautiful moment in your life :) I'm so happy for the both of you!

    Gorgeous photos, too!

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  14. You two are beautiful! You struck a chord with me, I too want to visit my native country of Thailand. I also want to bring my kids to show them what their heritage is. Thanks for sharing! BTW, my husband and I met while working in the Philippines.

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  15. What a wonderful story, I am so happy for you! I'll be back again!

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  16. How wonderful! It's one of those things, if you truly believe that something will happen, it will happen, maybe not how you expect, but it will happen!
    Congratulations, this is a beautiful story.

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  17. Wow, that is so cool! These are great pictures. I'm in Nashville and this area of the country is just gorgeous.

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  18. This post gave me goosebumps. I never imagined it would end so well and with a beautiful pic of the two of you!!

    I'm inspired to visit Spain one day and see all the places my great grandfather used to tell me about when I was a kid. Hopefully in the near future.

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  19. Great blog, very impressive, the first time I am here with you on my blog and I can say that I was fascinated by the way of your artistic testimony. Thank you allow us such an experience. I wish you all the best. Steven

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  20. hey, I just post exactly the same thing!!!! what a coincidence!!!

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  21. this is really special. i do believe that there is a God behind these meetings. be blessed in this journey.

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  22. That is such wonderful news. I love to reconnect with family and old friends. There is something so satisfying by making that reconnection. It's almost like a gap has been filled in your life. Life is too short not to seek out these reunions!

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  23. As someone who has lost some family in the last few years I have to tell you your post brought tears to my eyes.
    I'm very happy for you And your cousin. Who would have thought you would end up living so close together.
    Wow. Enjoy. Savor. Protect =)

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  24. Thanks for sharing such a moving story. I am so happy for you and cousin!

    The universe has a way of working things out - sometimes it doesn't seem so big!

    Excellent captures!

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  25. I LOVE IT! Too many intentional fingerprints for this to be coincidence. I love the idea that being "neighbors" was waiting for you all along. Enjoy!

    PS-I love the wooden walk through the pond. Lovely.

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  26. Yey! That's awesome. :)

    I love the shadow in the first pic.

    PS you have the best hair evar! :D

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  27. I'm so glad you found my blog and left some comments and I'm thrilled to be here now on yours !

    we used to live in north carolina...cary....and we loved it !!! such a beautiful state !!

    and how wonderful for you to now have family close by...what a blessing !!!

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  28. here you go....
    www.moredoors.blogspot.com

    and I too LOVE photography !!!

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  29. Cousins
    wear the gene
    that unlocks the heart.

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  30. I love those photos of the wooden pathway. How exciting to reconnect with your cousin!

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  31. What a wonderful story! I recently reconnected with a cousin I was close to when we were little, and we were both so happy to realize how much we had in common. So nice when family can be "friends" too.

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  32. What a pleasant picture to see the two of you together at last!
    I know all along that you'll have the chance to meet some of your distant relatives. And just like you're saying, this is just the beginning of connecting to your
    paternal roots.

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  33. That is awesome! It must be fate ..

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  34. That's such a feel good story. The hike looks beautiful what a wonder way to get to know each other.

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  35. Jessica I pray it all go'es well for you both.AMEN

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