The Meeting of the Lees

In Her Words…

LeesChristmasLee & I have a very interesting story. We first met at a conference for Korean adoptees and their families. I was living in TN and he was in PA and the conference was in NY. I had attended for the first time the year prior, but he had been unable to make that one.

The conference features multiple breakout sessions during the course of the day and Lee and I ended up in the same one on Saturday morning. I’d gone for personal reasons and also on assignment for Adoption Voices Magazine, for which I was a regular contributor. I was sitting in the front row giving my two-cents at every opportunity and Lee was sitting in the back, probably asleep. After the session, he came up and introduced himself to me and started asking lots of questions about my trip to Korea, etc. Then he asked which session I was going to go to next. I told him, and he was conveniently planning to attend the same exact one — what a coincidence! He kept showing up over the course of the weekend in all of the exact same places I was and we eventually got coffee together. My sister came later in the weekend to meet me and I told her, “I’m so glad you came to save me — this creeper keeps following me around the conference!”

After that weekend, Lee called and texted everyday. I received flowers in the office the next week and after a couple of weeks, he asked if he could visit me in Nashville. I fought him tooth and nail from the very beginning, but obviously, warmed up to him eventually. The rest, as they say, is history.

In His Words…

A few years ago, before I had even thought about ever visiting Korea, I was introduced to an organization dedicated to Korean adoptees and their familiesIndependenceHall. This group has conferences all over the United States annually and it just so happened that they were having a conference in my hometown of Harrisburg, PA in 2010.  As a result of the conference, I really took an interest in my heritage and Korean culture, so I planned my first trip back to Korea in the spring of 2011.

In the summer of 2012, the conference was held in Albany, NY.  I decided last minute that I was going to attend and it was the best decision I ever made, but I didn’t know it at the time.  It’s a three day conference and on Friday night, all of the adult adoptees are invited out to a special dinner held at a local Korean restaurant. Ironically, Whitney was seated only a couple seats down from me but we didn’t have a chance to talk.

The following morning, we were in a session together in the conference.  She was seated in the front of the room and I was in the back. I struggled to stay awake during it and was almost tempted to go back upstairs to my room and sleep since I’m not a morning person.  I chose to stay and had a chance to introduce myself to Whitney after it was over. We exchanged information and later that afternoon, I had the chance to talk one on one with her.

Well, we parted ways on Sunday and stayed in contact.  She had to fly back to Nashville, TN and I had to drive back to Harrisburg, PA.  I knew I needed to take initiative so I called her on my way home and stayed in contact with her.  Even with being so far apart, we did an excellent job of making it work.  Basically, the rest is history 🙂

© We the Lees, 2015. All Rights Reserved.

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