Found on Facebook

It was a typical night where the tv was on and still there was a need to take a peek at Facebook. I am not addicted to it. I just like peeking every day. I rarely post status updates, but I want to see how my "friends" are doing and if by chance they have posted new pix.

When the screen came up, I saw that I have one message. I opened it and it said something like ....hi i'm your cousin we met in san francisco a few years ago, do you remember me? And of course she called me by my nickname. The one that only family uses. So of course she is family.

Curiousity overtook me as my folks raised us without any relationship with cousins. Don't ask me why, I still don't understand whenever I ask mom what's up with that. Maybe it's the way I ask the question, but one of these days I will find a good way to ask her. Mom's answers to that question have never satisfied me at all. I just didn't get it.

Here's a backgrounder. My mom is the youngest of 11 children, or was it 10. Right off the bat, it would tell you that I know squat about my genealogy. So mom was the youngest, and I am her youngest of 7 children, which means that my cousins from my mother's side were generations older than I am.

When I was about 8 or 9, we have relatives come for a visit (very few stayed longer than one day). They would come with kids my age or older. I thought these kids were my "cousins", but no it was their dad or mom that is my cousin. So there alone, there is a disconnect. Cause, seriously how could an 8-year-old treat a seldom seen cousin that's old enough to be a parent? I wouldn't know.

In my own family alone, my parent's oldest grandchild was born 2 months after I was born. So mom was a new mother to me and at the same time a first-time grandma to my nephew. I grew up with my nephew as like a buddy. We went to school together and ran with the same circle of friends. We would be joking around and he would be calling me TITA (tagalog for aunt), which I learned to live with after initial awkwardness.

Anyway to go back to the cousin who messaged me on Facebook, I vaguely remember her face. But I certainly know her name. She belongs to my favorite uncle, on my father's side, which really makes our relationship seem closer since we have the same family name prior to marriage. And the funny thing is I have not indicated on my FB account my maiden name - I go by my married name. I thought that's another way to filter those who would "accidentally" add me as friend. If you are really close to me, you would know my married name now, wouldn't you?

So what I did was go into her account, browse through her photos and see her siblings, my cousins, now much older. Of course, I have no recollection of what or how they looked years ago. I wonder if facebook did us a favor by connecting us. I just hope so. I don't know how to establish a blood relationship with my blood relations. I also hope to get to know more blood relations.


The Scud said…
i am in my late 20s and my eldest first cousin, on both sides, are in their late 40s or early 50s. a first cousin's eldest daughter is a classmate of my younger brother.

typical filipino family set-up. daming nag-ooverlap. do american families have these too?
Aaarti said…
Fb does help us get closer to our family[who we dint know existed n those who we werent close to].. happened to me!! :)
Marites said…
i am also not very close to my cousins and like you, am not sure what's the reason behind it. Am happy that social networks have some somehow helped us reconnect with our long lost friends and relatives.

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