An Awkward Family Reunion in the Making…And why it concerns me!

For years, I have had a great interest in finding out who am I and where did my ancestors originate. Since there is blood of five ethnic groups running in my veins, I decided to do an extensive amount of genealogy and chose to start the search off with my caucasian ancestry. Since my grandmother’s grandfather was caucasian, and there were death certificates, documents, last will and testaments, pictures, and family bibles, I knew I was off to a good start. I signed to (OldTreeAncestry.com) to see if I could come across old census, documents, and possibly picture of ancestors that I did not have in my possession. Let’s just say that the research was so successful that I was able to trace ancestry back to 1639 from Denbie and Annandale, Scotland. I was even able to contact a living distant relative and was surprised of the fact that he had been doing ancestry research for five years and it was not until the third year of his continuous research that he was able to contact a living relative. Not only was I thrilled to speak with him, but I was like, “Wow, this site actually works!” Although the search of tracing ancestry and finding living family was long and exhausting, I was really excited to speak to someone I did not know that was family. I knew this was the beginning of a great journey and I was ready for whatever that was coming my way…… or so I thought.

Wow Frank! My new found distant cousin! How are you? That simple phrase was the most exciting words I have ever said this year so far and the response was even greater. “Cousin! How are you! I almost gave up on researching, but something just told me to keep pushing and I did. I’m glad that I’ve found you.” This was the very first time we had spoken to each other. We were both so thrilled to converse with one another that we phoned for a little over two hours. We did not want to disconnect, but we had other things to do so I made sure I said that we would continue our conversation very soon. I’m sitting at the office thinking profoundly of this new discovery and what was to become of it, but I know I still had a lot to learn of this new found cousin of mine. The following week of our very first encounter, we chatted again and we compared and merged family trees and our information was dead on. He knew of things of my great great grandparents that I did not know, so I knew for a fact, this was true. We later talked about a possible meeting in April and a family reunion in July; the timing was very short, but if something needs to be done, you get it done so from that moment on it was game on. I also presented the project of making a family tree and plugging in family information accordingly to present at the family reunion, but as we continued to communicate via email for documents and requests for additional information, things began to get a little odd.

As I mentioned before, my twice great grandfather was caucasian. He fathered six children by my twice great grandmother who was African American and half Native American. Back in the day, she and her children were considered “mulatto” because of their mixed ancestry. Frank was really excited to learn of this information and wanted to add it to his family tree as well. Being that all of this began in the southern states, a southerner of color would understand why this would feel like a having an apple stuck in one’s chest mentioning information like this to someone that sounds like a cowboy from the west, but the response was relieving. It is sad that racism is still a big deal in the world, but I said it with pride because I’m not ashamed of something that is apart and yet a big deal to me. I sent pictures of my great aunts and uncles to add to his tree and he sent pictures of our ancestors as well including his parents, but when I mentioned to him of the family that lives in the area in which my parents reside, to add to the tree, the suspicion began. In 2007, Frank was able to contact family members that lived in the area and met with them, this was before we were acquainted with each other, he sent me pictures of them and their families, but when I asked him about getting information from the closely residing relatives, the momentum of the research began to slow down. I am wondering what is going on and why is he so hesitant to tell me their names and it all of a sudden dawned on me that they may not be accepting of their “mulatto” relatives. I am not sure of this yet, but it was definitely the first thing that came to mind. I asked for names of these relatives and he replied, “I do not want to give you names of the living relatives just yet, I have to wait and see if they would approve of me releasing their names to be added to the family tree.” I really did not know how to respond to this so it had taken me hours to come up with a response because I was really shocked to hear this. I was upset, but I was also wondering if I was “full blood” caucasian would I have gotten the same response. I would really hate for this new journey to come to an end because of some racist pricks, but I would not care to be around any uneducated people so it would not bother me a bit. Frank assured me that if they are and if they did not want to meet up with the rest of the family, the hell with them and he would not care if they showed up or not either. That statement did make me feel good and I laughed about it as well, but deep down I was pondering why and how could someone dislike someone for the color of their skin? I just do not get it and maybe it not anything for me to get, but I thought really hard about it. We are still in the process of creating the meeting to get everything prepared for the big black and white reunion in July. I hope it’s not anything the way that I foresee it to be, but it would be great to meet the old and new additions to the family.

I would like to know what do you think about this situation? Please feel free to answer and use no filters. Honesty is the best dose of medicine. Thanks!

You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land, there is no other life but this.

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Originally posted on Don Charisma:


«You must live in the present, launch yourself on every wave, find your eternity in each moment. Fools stand on their island opportunities and look toward another land. There is no other land, there is no other life but this.»

— Henry David Thoreau


DonCharisma.com-logo-4 Charisma quotes are sponsored by DonCharisma.com – you dream it we built it … because – “anything is possible with Charisma”

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As Lovely Memories Fade.

Three years ago, coming from school to spend the Thanksgiving break with family in Mississippi. Excited because I have not seen them in a while, I was very anxious to pull up to the drive way. My mother and grandmother greeted me as though as I have been away for decades. We do keep in touch, but it’s just something about face-to-face contact when it comes to loved one. I was glad to be home and they were glad that I was present after many times of not being able to make a few occasions due to school and work. As I was getting settled in, my mom was making a grocery list of things to get when we went to shop to make the thanksgiving meal. At this time, all I could think of was food. Out of all honesty, my mom and aunts only did a small portion of the cooking, but my grandmother was in charge of everything. Years prior, she would make enough food to feed an entire community and that’s exactly what she did. Feed the community as well. She saw everyone as family and would give her last just to help others out. I was so thankful and still until this day to have her as my grandmother. 

Later on that day, my mother had made up her mind that she was going to give grandmother a break and try to cook everything by her lonesome along with the help of my aunts. I asked if I could assist with anything, and I was told that me being there was enough, but I decided to help with a number of things anyway. My mother has everything to make the dressing, but felt as though she was missing something. My mother asked my grandmother what all she needed to make it and this is when I knew that something was a little off. She begin to name a few items and then all of a sudden she said “I’ve forgotten.’I thought she was just being a little facetious, but when I saw her puzzling facial expression, I knew something was not right. We just put it on the golden ages (old age) and did not think anymore of it. It wasn’t until a few months after by mom had called and told me that my grandmother was constantly repeating things over and over again and that she was forgetting where she would lay her belongings. I immediately thought of dementia. I informed my mother about it and she scheduled an appointment with the local family doctor. After a few cat scans and tests, the doctor called and told my mother than my grandmother now has dementia and the beginning stages of alzheimer’s is setting in, I was in complete shock. Well not completely shocked, but I was a little surprised to hear what I was being told. This woman that I have known all of my life, strong, encouraging, courageous, and one who could make enemies who wanted to kill each other return to the best of friends, this includes family, memories were fading before me. It hurt a lot, but I know that it’s life and we have to build ourselves to expect the worse and hope for the best as dark and cold as that may sound.

Almost two years later, she’s almost a completely different person. She literally repeats things over and over until two people tells her that she has said it more than once. That still isn’t enough. Most times, she thinks my mom is her aunt and she has forgotten the name of most of her children. She has nine of them by the way. Sometimes she acts like a child and throws tantrums. I do cry sometime because it hurts to see her going through this, but I know deep down she’s still that same person that I’ve known all of my life.  I’ve put my goals on hold just to take care of her. We would never think about putting her in an retirement home because I know if she was still in her right mind and this situation was reversed, she wouldn’t do it to either of us.  We do have good days with her and as well as bad, but the good has outdone the bad tremendously. We all have depended upon her for a large percentage of our lives and now she’s depending on us to take care of her and we’re going to do just that until it’s time for her to be called “Home”and free of any mind-blowing disease. 

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Problem with posting profile pictures!

Hello everyone,

I am new to wordpress and I’m stilling learning about this great blogging site, but one of the most difficult tasks that I’ve encountered so far on here is the setting of a profile picture. I thought I actually set a profile picture, but it’s still showing blank profile. If any of you could assist me with this matter, I would greatly appreciate it. 

Thanks,

Ciardi

My Long walk to freedom (and still walking)

ciardilove:

These pictures are amazing and lovely. I could not begin to imagine how it must have been during the time in which the apartheid actually happened, but I know it has to be an extremely difficult time for many of the families that experienced it. We have came so far with resolving and working on many issues internationally, but we still have a long way to go.

Originally posted on Africa far and wide:

I didn’t realize how much the Apartheid experience had kept me in its clutches until I lived in Mozambique for a number of years. I was 10 years old when they released Mandela. I am now in my mid-thirties. And still to this day, I battle on with the deeply instilled and powerful influence of the apartheid regime.

August 2010 342

Apartheid was not just about black vs. white. The apartheid fundamentalists had a deep understanding that a united nation is a powerful one, but a divided one is weak in the way of bringing change and of challenging a system. For apartheid to be successful, the people needed to be segregated.

I needed to fear, distrust or dislike anyone different to me. I needed to feel superior or inferior. I needed to stick to my own.

But it wasn’t like that to start with. It never is. We all start off with…

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My first blog on WordPress!

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This is my first blog for WordPress and I’m excited to share all of my knowledge and information on the latest software on both the Android and iOS operating systems and more! My blogs/vlogs will consist of a variety of things. From fashion to anything that I think is suitable for the interest of an wider audience. I also look forward to seeing what each and every one of you has to share as well! Let’s get to blogging/vlogging!