Rediscovering My Family
Start writing a post

Finding Family I Didn't Know I Had

You never realize how many families you have until you move back home.

Finding Family I Didn't Know I Had
Katie Hil

Growing up away from my hometown, my mind was set around having my grandparents (on my mama's side), two aunts, two uncles, and four cousins along with my parents and two older brothers. Then there was my great aunts and uncles and my two great-grandmothers, Grandma Katie, and Grandma Lib (who are the two women that I got my name from). I have been told that I met one of my great-grandfather's, but I was so young when he passed away that I do not remember him.

We all spent our holidays at my grandparents' house where my cousins, brothers and I played constantly on an old dirt road with the neighborhood dogs. As we grew up, we became close even though we did not exactly live near one another. We always knew that Mema and Papa's house is our home away from home.

I never thought about having another family on my dad's side of the family until I became older. My dad has two brothers, Uncle Elwood and Uncle Earl. I remember sometimes we would see them when we came home to visit, but I did not think that I might have other cousins like I had on my mama's side.

After high school graduation, my family and I decided to move back home where my eyes were opened as to how much family I truly have.

One of the first people I re-met was my cousin, Jo Ellen. Our parents had pictures of us during Christmas time as Joey held me as a baby, but I was too young to remember. Joey and I have definitely made up for lost times!

At first, we would hang out together during snow days or spend time at each other's houses on our afternoon's off from work and school. Now, we are closer than ever both as cousins and as neighbors! I cannot remember my life before Jo Ellen, especially during Halloween! We have had so many adventures and are planning for more to come!

The day that we began to move to our small town, I remember my mama pointing out all of the houses on the way to our house of people I was related to. After a while, I blurted out, "Is there anyone on this road that I am not related to?" With mama's fast remark and pointing towards another house, she replied, "You're not related to them. They rent that house from your uncle."

My dad grew up on this same road with his four cousins including Jo Ellen and now they have all moved back to this road just in time for retirement.

While re-meeting a lot of my family, I was able to connect to all of my cousins in different ways that I never really thought about. For example, some of my cousins love Broadway shows just like my mama and I do. Now we can all enjoy singing songs together or going to see different shows/movies together! We have even enjoyed singing Broadway shows late at night while we worked preparing for a hurricane.

A couple of my cousins have even gone into teaching (which is my major), so anytime that I need help or just advice then I know I can go right to them to ask! Sometimes it's just fun to watch a teacher in action to learn and they are always more than happy to help any way they can.

Some of my cousins were also writers and photographers which has always been a passion of mine, as well! I was able to relate to so many of my cousins' interests that it was almost insane how much we were all alike when I did not grow up with them.

We all enjoy being a Tar Heel and Pirate fan, so there is hardly any dispute during basketball season since UNC and ECU do not normally play each other during then. Everyone helps out when they can and pray when it is out of our control. I have felt like our family has a more special bond than most families.

Discovering I had this side of my family has always been special to me because it has also been a way to reconnect to my grandparents and great-grandparents on my dad's side. Since they all passed before I was able to meet them, this gave me a way to hear about all of the stories that happened while they were alive which I have always taken to heart. I love hearing all of their stories and how some of my family were able to experience life with such sweet people.

I am more than thrilled to be home in my small town, USA and even more glad to be able to be so close to all of my family. They have all taught me so much over the years and I will continue to learn from them as the year's progress.

The Hill side of my family and the Boyette side of my family will always be very dear to my heart and I cherish each and every one of you deeply. You have all made me a better person and I love you all! Know that I will always be there for you all. Thank you for being a part of my life!


Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Robert Bye on Unsplash

I live by New York City and I am so excited for all of the summer adventures.

Keep Reading... Show less

The invention of photography

The history of photography is the recount of inventions, scientific discoveries and technical improvements that allowed human beings to capture an image on a photosensitive surface for the first time, using light and certain chemical elements that react with it.


The history of photography is the recount of inventions, scientific discoveries and technical improvements that allowed human beings to capture an image on a photosensitive surface for the first time, using light and certain chemical elements that react with it.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Exposing Kids To Nature Is The Best Way To Get Their Creative Juices Flowing

Constantly introducing young children to the magical works of nature will further increase the willingness to engage in playful activities as well as broaden their interactions with their peers


Whenever you are feeling low and anxious, just simply GO OUTSIDE and embrace nature! According to a new research study published in Frontiers in Psychology, being connected to nature and physically touching animals and flowers enable children to be happier and altruistic in nature. Not only does nature exert a bountiful force on adults, but it also serves as a therapeutic antidote to children, especially during their developmental years.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Simple Ways To Give Yourself Grace, Especially When Life Gets Hard

Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we are becoming.

Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

If there's one thing I'm absolutely terrible at, it's giving myself grace. I'm easily my own worst critic in almost everything that I do. I'm a raging perfectionist, and I have unrealistic expectations for myself at times. I can remember simple errors I made years ago, and I still hold on to them. The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is giving myself grace. I've realized that when I don't give myself grace, I miss out on being human. Even more so, I've realized that in order to give grace to others, I need to learn how to give grace to myself, too. So often, we let perfection dominate our lives without even realizing it. I've decided to change that in my own life, and I hope you'll consider doing that, too. Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we're becoming. As you read through these five affirmations and ways to give yourself grace, I hope you'll take them in. Read them. Write them down. Think about them. Most of all, I hope you'll use them to encourage yourself and realize that you are never alone and you always have the power to change your story.

Keep Reading... Show less

Breaking Down The Beginning, Middle, And End of Netflix's Newest 'To All The Boys' Movie

Noah Centineo and Lana Condor are back with the third and final installment of the "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" series


Were all teenagers and twenty-somethings bingeing the latest "To All The Boys: Always and Forever" last night with all of their friends on their basement TV? Nope? Just me? Oh, how I doubt that.

I have been excited for this movie ever since I saw the NYC skyline in the trailer that was released earlier this year. I'm a sucker for any movie or TV show that takes place in the Big Apple.

Keep Reading... Show less

4 Ways To Own Your Story, Because Every Bit Of It Is Worth Celebrating

I hope that you don't let your current chapter stop you from pursuing the rest of your story.

Photo by Manny Moreno on Unsplash

Every single one of us has a story.

I don't say that to be cliché. I don't say that to give you a false sense of encouragement. I say that to be honest. I say that to be real.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

How Young Feminists Can Understand And Subvert The Internalized Male Gaze

Women's self-commodification, applied through oppression and permission, is an elusive yet sexist characteristic of a laissez-faire society, where women solely exist to be consumed. (P.S. justice for Megan Fox)

Paramount Pictures

Within various theories of social science and visual media, academics present the male gaze as a nebulous idea during their headache-inducing meta-discussions. However, the internalized male gaze is a reality, which is present to most people who identify as women. As we mature, we experience realizations of the perpetual male gaze.

Keep Reading... Show less

It's Important To Remind Yourself To Be Open-Minded And Embrace All Life Has To Offer

Why should you be open-minded when it is so easy to be close-minded?


Open-mindedness. It is something we all need a reminder of some days. Whether it's in regards to politics, religion, everyday life, or rarities in life, it is crucial to be open-minded. I want to encourage everyone to look at something with an unbiased and unfazed point of view. I oftentimes struggle with this myself.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments