Reading time: 6 minutes

 

“The concept of marriage was new to me.”

 

One year ago, I got to meet Virgil Wongsokario, an entrepreneur based in the Netherlands with a passion for online video education and production called ‘Online Video Power’. Back then, we didn’t get the chance to properly meet up to have a coffee or two, until a few days ago.

I was following him on LinkedIn, where he gave away free content through short videos. In one of his earlier videos, he talked about where his passion for video came from. The video was short, but long enough to catch my attention and hold my interest. I knew in that tiny moment, I wanted to know more about his authenticity.

 

At A Cafe

So, a few days ago I got to meet up with Virgil at a café in Rotterdam and I was itching to know more about where his passion originated from. We chatted a bit about our lives and had the usual small talk. After slowly sipping away my coffee, I broke the ice.

“I saw your video” I said with a neutral voice.

“Which one?” he asked surprisingly.

“The one in which you talked about where your passion for video came from” I replied.

“You remembered that video!?” he asked me while laughing.

“Yes, I remember it clearly. And I was wondering if you would like to share the extended version of that story with me?” I asked.

I was sincerely interested in his past and how it has shaped him into the positive minded person that he is today, sitting next to me with his headphones around his neck. He noticed how serious I was about that question. He held his head down thinking to himself for a few seconds, which were more like minutes for me anxiously waiting for a reply. Finally, he raised his head and agreed to share his story with me. He even allowed me to write about it.

 

Virgil’s Story

Virgil was born when his mother was at the age of sixteen. As he grew up, he has never met his biological father, so his mother raised him and his younger brother on her own. As you can imagine, it was hard for a mother to raise two children single-handedly. So, every weekend, Virgil and his younger brother were at another family related by marriage, which at the same time were and still are his foster parents and brothers. At the age of eight, maybe nine, that’s where the world around Virgil changed. His foster brother announced he was going to get married.

For Virgil, that was a magical moment.

“I came from a family where there was only me, my younger brother, and my mom. My father has never been in my life back then. So, the idea of people getting married was something unknown to me — marriage did not exist in my life. When I heard the news of my foster brother getting married and knowing what it means to get married, I was moved. Imagine waking up and getting to wear an amazing suit. It was so cool! From a distance, I could see everything happening.”

Virgil started to laugh as he tried to remember the first dance. In his voice, I could recognise the tone of embarrassment and delight.

“There was a first dance and I think it was a song from Boyz II Men with ‘End Of The Road’. I can’t believe I actually remembered that dance. I also did a performance together with my cousins and the room was packed with family and friends enjoying the whole wedding day. I saw my foster brother and his wife driving away in this cool convertible car. That left such an impressive image in the back of my mind.”

Performance by Virgil (far left) and cousins

 

Virgil expressed to me how much of a let-down it was for him that such a beautiful and fun day ended so quickly. He could only wish that those moments lasted longer. Back then, he felt very disappointed and sad about it. That was until a man approached him a week after the wedding.

“Nobody told me that there was someone filming the whole wedding, nor did I notice it. Suddenly a week later, there was this man who approached me and showed me a video of that day. So, I was looking at it and I didn’t know what to think or how to feel about it. Too many emotions were caught up inside of me. One side of me found it weird, while another side thought it was beautiful. I was just speechless. I could relive every moment I held so dear.”

That was the first time that video came into Virgil’s life — to recall emotions and relive those precious moments. That was the starting point where his passion for video started. Virgil calls this his “One Anchor Moment”. At that time, he didn’t cultivate his passion right away — he was busy being a child. When Virgil went to college, studying communication and media, he got a project to make a video.

“I made a connection with the nine years old me. I could connect to that one anchor moment and I wanted to make my own videos. That was the first time in many years, I got in touch with making videos. And I have been doing so ever since.”

The last remark Virgil made was: “I didn’t make it this far alone. It’s thanks to so many people who came into my life that supported me, have made me the person that I am today.” Those humble words reminded me how much of a difference we can make in the lives of others.

 

  • Do you have an anchor moment?
  • What is your personal story?
  • How did your past shape you into the person you are today?

 

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