July 17, 2018
My expectations were high for a month in Hawaii. I had planned on soaking up the sunshine, enjoying tropical drinks by the pool, time to reflect, to write, to reconnect with my husband and my daughter, and to get to know my Hawaiian family. After all, I had been through this process before when I met my biological mother. I got to know the family but didn’t find a lot of commonality other than DNA.
My Hawaiian family immersion experience has in many ways not met my expectations and in other ways, the time here has exceeded what I could have ever hoped to discover and learn about who I am.
To begin with, the condo has a tiny, outdoor pool that isn’t heated and is located in the shade. Our first and only experience in the pool my daughter was asked to stop giggling by the security guard. Say what? Stop giggling to a child in an outdoor pool? Not only was the pool experience void of tropical drinks it wasn’t the resort vibe I was expecting.
I have had very little if any time to reflect. Instead, I volunteeed to help my brother in his campaign so my time during the days has mostly been consumed with campaign tasks assigned my brother or an attempt to hustle up work remotely for our new business. When I have had the opportunity to spend time with my daughter and husband it has mostly revolved around sharing a meal together not necessarily experiencing this paradise location.
And this experience has been nothing like meeting my Mom. The connection with this place and with this family has been overwhelming. The connection is so strong I can’t explain it but I feel drawn to be here with these people, learning from them about our culture. If left up to me, I would be selecting a house and moving the family to the island! If only, my daughter and husband could feel the connection as strongly as I do but they are ready to head home.
Tonight, I had dinner with my brothers and my Dad. It was the first time we have had dinner just the clan – without spouses or kids. At dinner we talked about the next few days and my scheduled flight home came up. My Dad said my absence will be a void they can’t fill.
I cried on the 30-minute drive back to our rented condo. The clock is ticking down the last few days until I will head back to Washington and I am not only sad but I am also angry about the situation. I just found this family. I just found my Dad and I am not ready to say good-bye.