Finding Anchor


“I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving: To reach the port of heaven, we must sail sometimes with the wind and sometimes against it – but we must sail, and not drift, nor lie at anchor.”

Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

If I were to ask you how you define an anchor (without stating the obvious definition), what would be your response?

If you were to ask me, an anchor would be – a source of strength, a refuge, a place or person that feels more like a home, a guide or something or someone that holds and keeps me together. And of course and certainly not the least, God…

Growing up, I always considered and looked up to my parents and siblings as my anchor. To this day, they’re still one of my greatest anchors. Although we are separated by distance, we know that we will always have each other’s back, no matter what.

Moving here was the biggest and most life changing decision I made for myself. Imagine someone moving to a different country with no family and friends around. Basically, I’m starting a new life on some strange place with a new husband and in-laws. I haven’t even the vaguest idea who and what kind of people they are.

Can you imagine what it’s like for my daughter (a year old at that time) to meet her father who she barely knew and remembered? During our almost 24 hour flight from the Philippines to N.C. we served as each other’s anchor. I was her comfort and she was my strength. When we got to N.C. and she finally met her father, she didn’t want anything to do with him. She wouldn’t even get in the child seat. She hang and hugged me for dear life. This scenarios of not going with her father, not sitting in the child seat and following me around tugging on my shirts went on for weeks. As much as it was hard for me, it was harder on her. During this time, she was my comfort and I was her strength and protector. We were each other’s anchor.

Today, this little girl who tugged on my shirts and hang on me for dear life is now seventeen. Up to this day and as long as I am living, she is and will always be my anchor. My comfort. My strength. My joy and my home.

In my sixteen years of living here in N.C., I was blessed to meet and know a lot of people who I can say, were my anchors in one way or another. They are the ones who believed in me and gambled in my talents when I started designing websites or when I started with my photography. This act of kindness, gave me more than encouragement and belief in myself, it also opened up new doors for me which wouldn’t have opened up for me if not for them. And I am forever grateful.

And this “imaginary” very good and dear friend of mine…he’s actually real and he’s got a name. We haven’t talked and seen each other in years, that I felt like he’s but imaginary. But, he’s out there somewhere, doing his thing, taking care of his family and responsibilities and staying busy as always…I’m sure. Anyway, he told me one time, that I am included in his – already full responsibilities. I’ll be honest that at that time, though I find it sweet, what he meant didn’t sink in. Anyway, how many friends do you have, told you that you are their responsibility? He’s the only one who told me that, and meant it…even if it’s sacrificing a lot of things. And it took me a while to realize it. This imaginary friend, he is an anchor to me in more ways than one. But, I am going to stop right here, because I have to save the rest for my future blogs.

Going back to my in-laws, I couldn’t asked for better in-laws. We were (my daughter and I) both welcomed with open arms. My mother-in-law treated me like I am one of her own. And Papaw Culberson, he is an anchor to his family. He kept the family traditions, one of which is the family get togethers. And with him gone, it’s just not the same and I miss that.

What about you, who are your anchors?

Photo was taken during our trip to Washington, D.C. , July 2018. We made a quick stop to National Harbor in Maryland, after a trip to a Filipino restaurant in Oxon Hill (I think). It was cold and rainy, so we didn’t really get to explore. Hopefully, the next time we visit, we get to do that.

“As for me, I hope at some point of somebody’s life, I get to be their anchor, wouldn’t you?”

Grateful for the anchors in my life,

P.S. My current plan right now is to publish another book. This time, a photo book (with stories) which would be a Black & White collection of my favorite photos. Why black and white? I think, black and white photos conveys more emotions than a colored one, at least I look at it that way. That even in the absence of colors, you can see and feel through it. And to me, that’s powerful. I’m sharing this here, so this plan would turn into a goal. I hope to get more than enough photos to put in it and get it done by the end of this year. I would love to publish it just before my 50th birthday. Talk about, milestone!

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