This is the last week of the personal history theme. I have had a rough week filled with lots of wonderful memories and sadness. This is a drawing that my ex-husband did of a photo of my grandparents for a short story I wrote a long time ago. I love it. I don't have very many photos of my extended family, my parents have most of our heritage photos lost in some box in storage. I keep bugging them to find them but no luck yet. I saw the most amazing photo at my Aunt Mae's Funeral on Saturday of my Aunt Mae, My Grandmother Ellen, My Great Grandma and My Aunt Orlie. My Aunt Mae was my Grandmother's older sister and my Aunt Orlie was her brothers wife. It was breathtaking, the four women standing there as I had never known them, so beautiful, young and full of life. I have to get a copy from my cousin Sue. My Aunt Orlie is now the only one left, she looked good, but frail, I am so thankful to have had the chance to see her again. It was sad because all of us reminisced about all of the large family gatherings we used to have, but as that generation aged and many family members moved far apart those traditions dissipated.
Sad also because there is a rift between my fathers brother well I guess his wife and all of us. I was supposed to inherit my grandmothers wedding ring but my Aunt Pam has refused to give it to me. In doing so, I suppose to make herself feel better about the whole thing she proceeded to say some of the most hurtful, cruel things about my parents I have ever heard. For that I can not forgive, though I am trying. Also it hurt my father greatly and the fact that my uncle doesn't call or anything anymore also hurts him. He was so happy to see his brother it made me just more disgusted with them. I did get to reconnect with some of my extended family most of whom live in the Bay Area and I plan to stay in touch with and learn more about my family history. I also learned from my Aunt Gretchen my dad's sister that we were both trying to find out more about our unusual last name which was told to us as being originally east German/Prussian. However I had only found double vowel last names to be dutch so I told her about my suspicion that it was originally Dutch. Gretchen had researched it in Germany and found that it was indeed common for the double vowel and the cke (usually German names omit the c so it was thought to possibly even be Polish) in Northern Germany and she has even spoken with some family's from that region who confirmed that it is a Northern German name. Soooo interesting, we will have to do even more research together. So that is my Oma and Opa.