In the UK and the USA there is a TV programme called Who Do You Think You Are. It invites well known people to share the findings of the research into their family history with the TV viewing millions. It is compulsive viewing.
Do you ever wonder who you really are? I do.
I am somebody that needs to have a project on the go and once started, I can think about little else. My project at the moment is to trace my family’s history. Given that my main objective this year is to tune into my inner self and one of the key disciplines required to achieve my goal, is to stop brooding about the past, this may not the ideal project.
I know a fair amount about by paternal genealogy, but I know relatively little about by maternal Grandmother’s family as she was born in Europe in 1903. She met my Grandfather, who was in the British Army, either during or very shortly after the First World War. Fate bought two very young people together in the midst of chaos and carnage of war. They married before they returned to the UK in 1921. To my knowledge, my Grandmother, never returned to Europe to see her family and that makes me sad.
My Mother, now 84, knows precious little about her own Mother’s family. My Grandparents both died when I was very young, so I never got the opportunity to ask them. So how and where they met, as well as what happened to my Grandmother’s family, has become a bit of a preoccupation for me.
Apart from having traced my Grandparent’s Army Wedding record, I have have discovered that finding out about relatives born abroad is not easy, but I will not give up.
“In all of us there is a hunger, marrow deep, to know our heritage – to know who we are and where we came from. Without this enriching knowledge, there is a hollow yearning. No matter what our attainments in life, there is still a vacuum, an emptiness, and the most disquieting loneliness.” — Alex Haley, Roots