Monday, September 15, 2008

9-15-08 Family Reunion

What a day we had.... First of all, Aaron, the boys and I had fun exploring the area... My Japanese is coming back to me even though it was hard to get adjusted to begin with. We started the day finding breakfast on the street, the boys were quickly drawn to McDonald's while Aaron & I wanted Starbucks. We got both and afer breakfast, went to the local market street nearby where English is not really spoken. I found so many great local food that I used to eat as a child and it brought back so many memories. It is so great to share this experience with Aaron & my boys. They are having so much fun learning a few phrases and have been very excited to see all the neat things and asking me a million questions. Aaron has always been great with trying variety of food, so for lunch we had Okinawa Soba, which is made with soba noodles, pork flavored broth and a fairly fatty piece of pork meat. The boys had TACO RICE, which is a Japanese style taco... it's basically tacos over rice (instead of taco shells or tortillas). I had a tofu stirfry :)

After lunch, we took a much needed nap and waited for the reunion to begin. Sheri, (my sister that is one year older than me)& Howie, her fiance' picked us up. Since we were a little early, we drove by where I used to live.... It was so strange to be in the place that I grew up playing... it's funn how everything seems so big when you're a child. Many people are fortunate to have grown up in the same city or state where they spent their childhood and returning is not that big of a deal, but for me, this was the first time I had been back there since I moved out of that area when I was 10 years old. It felt like I had never left, yet those days seemed so long ago like it was part of another person's life. It's a strange feeling.

We got lost trying to find our brother Michael's place, so we waited for my 2nd oldest sister, Deborah to drive up with her son and my mom. As I walked over to my mom to say hello, she looked at Deborah and asked who I was... (since her stroke 2 years ago, she hasn't been quite the same mentally). When Deborah said it was Pamela, she started crying and held my hand really tight. Ofcourse, I started to cry and it made Deborah cry. The evening went on with so many reunions... Marie, my oldest sister showed up with her husband and her son that I had never met, along with her daughter, her husband and 2 children. My brother Michael introduced me to his girlfriend, who was busy hosting the big party. Communication was harder at times with the English/Non Japanese speaking folks, along with the ones that speak both and those that only spoke Japanese. Aaron and the boys did great with meeting everyone.

It was fun to catch up with everyone. Towards the end of the evening, I asked my sister to ask my mom if I could pray for her. She said yes and I prayed with her. As I prayed, tears began to flow and we both cried. I could tell my sisters and brother didn't really know what to do with the crying and the praying that was going on, but in the end, I really just wanted to bless my mom somehow. I didn't want to leave her knowing that perhaps this could be the last time I will see her. Only God knows what was happening in her heart.

It was such an emotional evening. I will see my sisters again before we leave and hopefully my brother too... but I probably won't see my mom again. Typing those words brings tears to my eyes. Only God can do a miracle and that is what I prayed for her lastnight.

I am not sure how much healing is happening with the relationship between my sister and my brother, but I believe it was the beginning. This step was huge and I am so glad that God gave us this opportunity to bring us all back together again.


erin said...

What a wonderful day for you and your family. You look so happy! This truly is a journey of a lifetime for all of you . Thanks for sharing. Your cup runneth over!

bless you,

Kelly B said...

Tears of joy for you Pam and this beautiful reunion with your family!!

Ruth said...

Pam, so great to finally see you with your family!!! Sooo glad you got to see them all and all together as well!!!

Lisa said...

How special to be able to see your family after so many years. I know you will cherish this forever! Tears of happiness are trailing down my face as I read about this Pam!

Donna said...

Wow. What a day, I can't even imagine the gammet of emotions you had that day. A weight has to be off your shoulders, as far as how the day would go, seeing your mom, PRAYING with her, etc. It looked like a great reunion!

Karmen and Greg said...

Okay, now that you have me crying ... ;) What a wonderful reunion! I am so happy you were able to pray with your Mom and to see healing starting in the family ... and just to be together again. What a wonderful blessing! Still praying that the rest of the trip will be just AMAZING! Won't be long now before Anna's in your arms!!!!


Alisha said...

I sat here and cried tears of joy for your blessed reunion. You have been on my mind a lot and I am praying that you will see miracle fulfilled. I can't find words to say how happy I am for you.
Love Alisha

Melinda said...

What a joyous reunion! I am teary eyed reading about you praying with your mom. What a special moment that must have been for you! I pray that this is the first step towards healing for your family!

Thru a Tori-lens said...

God is so good! I knew you wouldn't get stuck in that typhoon...and you got some rest out of the deal! Keep us updated (so I can keep on crying all over myself). WE LOVE YOU AND ARE PRAYING FOR YOU!!! xoxo

Steve n Coco said...

Wow, Pam, that is just amazing! And completely overwhelming, I'm sure. How great that you got to bless your mom in such a powerful way. I pray that miracles do happen on this trip and beyond! Enjoy the rest of your time.

Elizabeth Bergeron said...

So, now that you ALL of us crying tears of joy that you have had this opportunity to re-connect with your family, are you happy!! LOL! No, I am thrilled for you all and I am sure there are stresses as you try to adjust and understand and learn about each other. May your time be sufficient. God Bless you all!

Jessica said...

Hi Pam,

What a wonderful reunion with your family! I had tears in my eyes as I was reading about it. I am praying for you and your family during this trip and can't wait to see Anna in your arms!! :-)

Anonymous said...

Pam Aaron and family: Ann and I have been following your travels and are so excited. We love you and can't wait to see you and Anna. Thanks for telling us the story about praying with your mom.