Sunday, June 9, 2019

Cousins = Friends

Have you found cousins through your genealogy searches? I have. Researching my mother's Irish family has lead me to discover cousins I never knew I had. 

Before that, all my cousins were on my father's side of the family. My father was one of seven children and my mother was an only child. So our family was always stacked heavily towards my father.

Irish Cousins 
A weekend on the New Jersey shore

There are three of us at the heart of the Irish cousins. There's me, Colleen in New York State; Patricia, in New Jersey who is my 2nd cousin 2 x removed; and Tara in Massachusetts who is my third cousin. We Irish Cousins not only connected through emails, we met. We have hopped in our cars and driven to each other's houses. And we continue to meet. First, it was just a meal. Now we spend weekends or several days together.

 June 2019 in Cape Cod, MA

We have gotten together to do research and share stories & photographs & documents. But we have also met to visit museums, take a boat ride on the Hudson River & to share meals. We talk about the things we like to do, our children & grandchildren, our homes, and more. We have found that we share much in common, more than just DNA. Over the years, we have become friends. 

This year we met at Tara's new house on Cape Cod. We went to beaches, saw charming lighthouses, browsed in antique shops, ate lots of fresh fish and we talked, talked & talked. 

There are more than just the three of us. We have more cousins in Connecticut, the place where our common ancestors, Patrick Coyle & Margaret Brady Coyle, lived. They include Lisa, Eric & their twins; Lisa's parents, Lucille & Charles; Maureen, Daniel and their boys, Henry & Gavin; Shaileen;  and... We keep growing. Add our children & grandchildren to the numbered you can see it quickly gets big. On this recent trip we met Linda for the first time. She was found through DNA matches. 

Of course, it is much harder to connect with everyone at once. We try for that through emails and our busy calendars. But the three of us, at the core of the Irish cousins, continue to see each other. We look forward to getting together and have lots of fun.

My cousins on my father's side have been in my life all my life. We played together as children. We shared our life's happiest and saddest moments. We are always there for each other. We have been my cousins & friends all my life. It is probably because I have that wonderful connection that I was eager to reach out and find it in my mother's family too.

If you find cousins, don't just add them to your charts & genealogy programs. Get to know them. Make them friends!

Below are other posts I have written about my Irish Cousins: 

1 comment:

  1. Colleen, I love love love this post. Some cousins are very excited about connecting with family and really enjoy getting together. Other cousins are less interested, and only respond when I reach out. Last month, my husband and I had a wonderful time meeting my Manchester, England cousins for the second time. They are warm and "cousiny" and even pick up the phone and call me! So I agree with you, it's very rewarding to be friends with cousins.


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