Just a little while ago I was having a conversation with some friends about family and it really got me thinking. It is such a privilege to have a warm loving family as not everyone has that luxury. While I wasn’t raised in a “traditional” family setting, it was still quite reminiscent of one. For instance “Dad” was my maternal grandfather, I also have a wonderful uncle that has been a father figure to me as well, not to mention my friend’s Dad. So really, instead of having one Dad I have three. 🙂
Moms well I have several of those as well. Not to mention a host of aunt uncles and cousins. Here i am a grown man and I still really appreciate these ones in my life, although sadly my Dad has passed away. I miss him oh so very much, you know one of the problems with when someone dies is that you have to live your life without them continuing to be there to talk to to visit to hold, it feels like an empty void that they once filled. Losing him felt like a meteor hit me and the after-shock of it all was ferocious indeed. Memories of my childhood flood me at times, in fact I am thinking of him right now and tears are welling up in my eyes as I write this, but I know that this post is something I have wanted to do for some time and the time is now.
Its amazing that in the mid 1980’s there are a number of my family that was still alive. In fact I have met three of my great grandparents. Two of which died soon after I was born and as a result there is no impression of them in my mind. but my maternal grandfather’s mother died when I was eleven . I would have loved to know these ones for the people they were but sadly I was unable to do so. Now I no longer have any grandparents left either.
Well at least I have siblings of my grandparents alive, while there quite up in age they have pretty good memories and do their best to share with me family history that would have been impossible for me to witness firsthand because I was born too late to do so.
For instance, my maternal great-grandmother was born a twin but that her twin died soon thereafter. I also learned that a major reason for my so many of my grandmother’s family leaving the Eastern Shore of Maryland was because of racism. Not to mention they were looking for jobs to the north as well. Interestingly while it was awful what they went through by them moving to the DC area and Philadelphia events took place that would change their courses and would ultimately result in my birth.
No complaints here
I am also blessed to have relatives that are interested in preserving our family history and they have genealogy software that helps to keep track of us all.
Oh and here’s a neat tidbit…I may be related (albeit distantly) to the late ornithologist John Value Dennis.
The cool part is, that is just the tip of the iceberg as there is so much more to learn and I will continue to learn more because their is nothing like family.