Tuesday, November 6, 2012

30 Days of Gratitude: Day Six - Ancestory

What do a 18th century Rhode Island freed (black )man, a 19th century (English) Australian exilee, a Confederate soldier, and a body guard for Mormon Prophet Joseph Smith have in common? How about an Italian immigrant, an English servant, or 16th century Irish royalty?

These are but a few of the threads that, when woven intricately together, make up the fabric that is me.

I think its safe to say, that like many Americans, I am truly a potpourri of ethnic, cultural, and even religious backgrounds. I have ancestors that called their home England, Germany, Scotland, Italy, Norway, Denmark, Ireland, Australia, and some who were even North American Natives. Some were royalty and some were servants. Some were law-makers, and likewise, some were law-breakers. Interestingly enough, if you dig back a few generations, my family line crosses that of President Borack Obama. I'd bet if I did enough digging, I've probably got a distant link to Mitt Romney in there too.

What does this tell me? Well, simply put, that we are all a big interconnect family. If we trace enough names, I'm probably related to you somehow too....

But honestly, family history is more than just plotting names on a tree. Each of these individuals that makes up my past has a story. They are more than a name, they are a person, and each of them has contributed - some in large ways and others in less easily measured ones - to make me the person I am.

I am grateful for the men and women who paved the way before me. I am thankful for who they were and what they did that made my life possible. I am honored by the great personalities that make up my ancestry.

"If you don't recount your family history, it will be lost. Honor your ow stories and tell them too. The tales may not seem very important, but they are what binds families and makes each of us who we are." - Madeleine L'Engle

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