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Perhaps having lived a foolishly simple existence and being such a trusting naivete sort of person growing up I always thought that my destiny had called for total exclusion from knowing the personas and life styles of the people who purportedly had taken care of me as a child, my grandparents when I arrived at their home here as I wrote just under the orange squiggy and where my life actually started to bloom.

Where I can, I will avoid rehashing stories previously written about the devil I met upon my entry at that hell in this diary. In order to effectively give the reader a clear picture of this story, it will be necessary at times to go back and remind you of an issue.

Right off the bat, one issue I want to remind you of is that of the Goon I came to see as the odious sight of a human being, my grandfather as he beat and clubbed poor Hobos off running trains while working as a paid oppressor by the Southern Pacific Railroad Company when I lived in his home. I wrote earlier about the hate and dislike I developed for my grandfather in the second to last paragraph on this link here for his brutality towards poor Hobos at the time.

This is a diary about my grandfather as I question that refrain that tells of how cycles are part of the foundations of families. For example, the saying goes that if one treats his children brutally, that child will grow up to treat his children brutally also. That is the cycle in that refrain or saying. Some do not accept this theory. I too am skeptical but now I do not know for sure. However, the cycle of brutally does not apply to my grandfather here. The cycle he initiated with his children was not of a brutal nature. His cycle was one of infidelity and betrayal.  And I had to pay a heavy price. I will attempt to make sense of why I am now a genealogist. I blame all of this on my grandfather for forcing me to now go out on a journey to search his cycle of infidelity and betrayal. A cycle of infidelity and betrayal that infected my own mother.

But today I laugh at those people. I laugh not because they are all now deceased, except for that skinny girl Amelia who greeted me at her door that morning when  I arrived at her door. For I respect the dead. But they are all gone, deceased, hasta la vista baby, now I can laugh and tell all the stories that were hidden so clumsily from me all my life.

In the diary last week I wrote in the second to last paragraph, But hey wait! Next you will read that my grandfather cheated on who I had thought all my life to be my grandmother. She was not. She never was my grandmother regardless of how many times you read when I wrote that she was. She was actually my mother`s stepmother.

I need to step back from the day I arrived at my "Step-grandmother`s" home as a child. I need to go back to the days when only my older aunt Hortencia had already been born and was a mere child. My other aunts and uncles were not born yet. There was only my grandfather who was Italian and my grandmother who was born in Mexico when Hortencia was born in San Antonio.

Shortly after my aunt Hortencia was born my grandfather met a young lady named Beatrice and had a relationship with her. My mother was born. MY grandmother was Beatrice. Simple as that. Shortly after my mother`s birth, my real grandmother Beatrice died in a car accident, as the story goes. The mere thought of how hated my mother was by all of my other aunts in later years has now come home to roost  with me. The growling and hissing that my step-grandmother used on my mother the day I stood on her porch that morning finally has made sense to me.

The many times I wrote of my aunt Elvira`s hate for my mother and me starting on the very first day she saw me now makes sense. During a comment discussion in one of my diaries some lady commented on wanted to know why my mother was hated so much. At the time I did not have a clue. Now I know. Now I know why my mother ran away with an older man to Austin, Texas where I was born and the cycle my grandfather initiated on my mother started the churn slowly but surely then. It is only appropriate to mention that my brother Joe was born first. We had the same biological father and mother.

Then my mother had three other siblings -- by another man. And the cycle was true to my own grandfather`s making. But they are all gone now. Only my aunt Amelia who has become quite close to me and my half-sister who some here know as my "baby mom". Amelia is my rock and a better source than any search engine out there now, including Ancestry. Amelia relates true stories of how rotten and full of worms my family tree turned, to the extent that it fully disappeared from the ground, leaving only her to keep the cycle alive and tell about it.

Recently on my journey through Family Search I made a shocking find. My mother had a son listed in the 1930 - 1997 birth index collection as having been born one year after my own birth, by a man not my biological father. If I had known how I would feel finding what I have found so far, my money would have gone on rejecting all of this genealogy searches or even writing about it.  I now know the name of this sibling on my mother`s side. I also know there are others, probably, hopefully still out there.

I am confident as I renewed my courage to continue that I am doing the right thing and that I am in the right place here at Genealogy and Family History Community. I am well treated here with proper compassion. I appreciate that beyond words.

I have connected with other sources who appear sincere wanting to help find my way towards my goal. There are many stories to tell about my family tree. I am working on obtaining information about my "hopefully" sibling sister Alicia. I think she is supposed to be older than me. I always wanted a sister.

Unfortunately, those working the cycle of infidelity and deception never thought of

Originally posted to Ole Texan on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 05:21 PM PDT.

Also republished by Genealogy and Family History Community.

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Comment Preferences

  •  This is really resonating with me (11+ / 0-)

    at the moment as a stepmother of an adult son who is expecting his first child and I see our stable family dynamics coming under strain as "biology" trumps all other considerations.  We we close before this, but now it's biological Dad and Mom looming large as my stepson thinks about impending fatherhood.

    Families: who can fathom what goes on?? Despite the prevalance of divorce and remarriage, I search in vain for guidance on what is permissible for those of us relegated to the role of "bystander" when once we made a difference.

    I wish you all the best in your quest, my friend. Unraveling your history is a journey into a world of very human people who probably did their best, not expecting that their decisions would reevaluated many years later. Safe travels in this strange, unwinding path!

    Some drink deeply from the river of knowledge. Others only gargle. -- Woody Allen

    by cassandracarolina on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 05:49:03 PM PDT

    •  An Absolutely Mandatory Bit of Wisdom (7+ / 0-)
      Unraveling your history is a journey into a world of very human people who probably did their best, not expecting that their decisions would reevaluated many years later. Safe travels in this strange, unwinding path!>
      History is flat for most of us and trying to bring it into 3-D perspective without understanding tested means of historical reconstruction can lead us to be very judgemental when we, perhaps, don't have the necessary information for making judgement calls. Trying to fit 21st Century social standards on earlier periods can result in deceptive and faulty conclusions.  It's job to be taken on with humility and a respectful recognition of the widely dispersed social frailties of the human animal.

      Newt 2012. Sociopath, adulterer, hypocrite, Republican.

      by tikkun on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 08:07:04 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I could not agree (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cassandracarolina, klompendanser

        more with you tikkun. Wisdom should be the surname of my friend cassandracarolina.

        Your own comment is true and certainly applies to me. I am currently in a situation where I am relying on a person who was present and witnessed what I have written lately.

        Previously I had written solely based on whispers I heard floating in the air by me. In other words, word of mouth as I grew up made up most of some of my writings, even as I observed those things through the eyes of a child.

        As an adult trying to fit the pieces I recall, plus my living witness has made for a frustrating encounter with the past unknown skeletons in my family tree closet. What I wrote today about the master cheater is just some piece of scab to these skeletons.

        But you are correct. I need to focus on avoiding faulty conclusions. I think I have done that recently in a find that I am struggling to comprehend.

        Thank you for your comment.

        Old men tell same old stories

        by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 06:57:41 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Good morning cassandracarolina, I (3+ / 0-)

      retired after clicking the publish button to this diary last evening. I note with much joy that you are the first to post your comment. Not only that, but what you write tells me I am not the only one who feels like having been relegated to bystander by the adults while life swiftly rushed by us.

      I really hope that your own situation with the upcoming birth of a child to your grownup stepson will remedy that strain you feel about biology considerations. I have learned that nothing brings more joy and that urge to understand a
      situation as the one you describe than the birth of a child in a home. I do not even have to tell you this. You will know as soon as you hold that child in your arms.

      Thank you for sharing your own experiences with me. I am quite comfortable now that I have found the route that may take me where I need to go. Each day I get discouraging news from sources I have contacted. I will not allow that to discourage me from continuing  this journey.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 06:44:08 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I come from a family where genealogy was (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TayTay, klompendanser

        taken very seriously despite having a few tragic disruptions. My father and his two younger brothers were summarily abandoned by their mother (as I've written about in comments in one of your earlier diaries), leaving each one scarred in a different way.

        Growing up, I had six grandparents, since my father's biological parents each remarried. This was my first brush with "step-people", and it would be many years later that I remarried and acquired two stepsons, then in high school, now both in their 30's.

        In my nearly 20-year first marriage, infertility (partly my "fault", mainly my ex-husband's) loomed very large. While it's been great that my stepsons, at first very distant, with the older one not even speaking with his father for 12 years) have embraced me as some sort of kin, "failure to reproduce" still haunts me at certain times.

        My current husband is a wonderful partner in many ways, but he can't grasp this aspect of my persona. As far as he's concerned, this in-utero grandchild is "our" grandchild and I should just stop worrying about it.

        Really, though, that is not his call to make; it's my stepson's. As I said, there has been a recent shift in the dynamic and while I am sure that my stepsons like and respect me, impending fatherhood has made the younger one focus more on his biological mother and my husband as his "family", and I am out of the loop.

        Strangely, this pregnancy, announced to us on Mother's Day (and you can well imagine that that is NOT my favorite holiday!) hit me with a wave of relief. My failure to reproduce was like a slate wiped clean, ready for a new birth in the family.

        Now, well... I don't know what to think or feel. I wonder whether people like me - the end of our line if we can't produce some descendants - are less likely to spend time tracing our roots. My brother has three kids, so my family lineage lives on.

        With so many marriages ending in divorce and remarriage and broken and blended families, I am sure that I'm not the only step-parent who struggles to fit in and add value without making some witless gaffe or taking on more self-inflicted angst than necessary.

        Maybe we need a DKos group for "step-people". ;-)

        Some drink deeply from the river of knowledge. Others only gargle. -- Woody Allen

        by cassandracarolina on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 07:21:00 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  cassandracarolina, you have (3+ / 0-)

          been holding out on us with your astounding comment here or I have been asleep at the wheel, as I do not remember you sharing such personal information.

          Oh, how can I forget the comment you mention that you wrote in one of my previous diaries?. I remember it well.

          But six grandparents, I do not think I knew that. Hey, and it is very easy to grasp your description of a serious family like yours coming together as a genealogy group. It is not a pleasant feeling for me to read of your pain of not able being to reproduce decendants and your feelings that it is the end of the line for you.

          cassandracarolina, it is not the end of the line for you. I mean that in another special way. I am not one to give advise to you about this, but I would think there are other remedies to your situation that would erase that feeling of not being able to have children. Wow, I just do not know what to say. You do not deserve this fate.

          I am struggling to understand how you feel about the upcoming birth of a child by your stepson. That your husband says that the in-utero child will be your grandchild and you should accept that, gosh I cannot think of what to say to that.

          And I thought the whole world was crashing down on me. Having known a bit of how you think by reading what you write makes me think you seek no pity with this comment. You are a strong woman, hey , I have come to know that too. I just wonder how you have kept your sanity :-)...

          It is not the end of the line for you cassandracarolina. You will no doubt take that new born in your arms and forget all of you pains.

          Good Luck my friend.

          Old men tell same old stories

          by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 08:08:21 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Thank you for such kind thoughts, Ole Texan (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            TayTay, klompendanser

            I have gone back through your diary list and the comment about my dad and his brothers was from The story teller's dream is awakened Part 1 posted on January 11, 2012

            If you don't want to search for it, here it is:

            How glad I am to read your moving diary (3+ / 0-)

            My father and his two brothers were abandoned by their mother, setting in motion memorable and traumatic events that drove each of them to strangely different futures. My father, the eldest, grew pessimistic, stoical, self reliant, while a younger brother venerated his absent mother, delighting in his every contact with her. He sent all his WW II pay home to her to put in a joint account, which she depleted, unsprisingly, but he loved her all the more and only blamed himself. The youngest brother led a difficult life, mired in pessimism and religious dogma that brought him no joy.

            I am eager for your next installments, and glad to see your diary here on Community Spotlight, well deserved!!  

            You're right: I am not seeking pity, but I am starting to look around for some kindred spirits who have been through this step-parent-to-step-grandparent transition before who can provide some insights.

            Trying to discuss it with my husband isn't helping either of us. For all of his intelligence and success in everything he undertakes, he's not gifted in the area of visualizing situations from the perspective of others.

            My mother is like that too. Their advice is generally to "snap out of it", but Ole Texan, you and I both know that working through the pain is the only way to move forward in life. This is the "homework" we're all assigned in life!

            My father knew that, and in my occasional periods of melancholy, I feel as though I am channeling him and all of his kindness and humility. My sorrows were very real to him, and though he rarely said much about the emotional side of life, when he did, his words were well chosen and tremendously liberating.

            This is one more reason why I treasure your kind thoughts, and hope that we will hear more of your story, my friend.

            Some drink deeply from the river of knowledge. Others only gargle. -- Woody Allen

            by cassandracarolina on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 08:27:33 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Cassandracarolina, the diary (0+ / 0-)

              on the link you showed me is one I open regularly to see and remember that particular day. I remembered well the quote you pasted in your last comment too. How can I forget that you like to read what I write.

              I think it is one common thing we have. I too enjoy what you write for your expertise and wisdom. I have learned a lot from you, both in writing and in friendship.

              As for being able to provide some thought about living from step-grandparent to step-parent or vice versa, I regret I am not one to help you there. I can however, assure you that I have never even thought of that. My step-sisters I consider blood line coming from my mother, and it makes no difference to me about their births.

              I will not be as bold as your mother to tell you to just move on with your life, or something like that you mentioned. I will however tell you that I will always be here if you need a crying shoulder.

              Take care my friend.

              Old men tell same old stories

              by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:47:30 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

        •  "step-people" (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          my mother's father was married three times, his second and third wives had children from previous marriages. Grandpa's father was married four times, and his 4th wife (my g-grandmother) had children from a previous marriage, and the previous generation also had multiple marriages. The number of full, half, step, and adopted children in just these recent generations is mind-boggling ... and bad word producing as I keep having to "fix" the relationships. At grandpa's funeral, my now ex-brother-in-law was perplexed as to how Mom could have three brothers with 3 different last names.

          But they are all family and have contributed to our family story.

          I am childless, by choice though there were some health issues that may have made the choice moot. However, by default, I've become the family historian--my siblings, cousins, etc. are all fascinated by the information, but clueless as to how to go about it. I look upon my hobby as my legacy...which may not be my DNA precisely, but means something to people share aspects of it.

          {{{cassandracarolina}}} for the struggles

          "If you are sure you understand everything that is going on around you, you are hopelessly confused." Walter Mondale

          by klompendanser on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:25:25 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Goodness gracious, klompendanser! (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            My situation is a walk in the park compared to your family labyrinth ;-)

            Your family is fortunate that you have taken the time to piece all this together, and you are absolutely right: your work is a legacy that will resonate for generations.

            Some drink deeply from the river of knowledge. Others only gargle. -- Woody Allen

            by cassandracarolina on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:31:00 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Klompendanser as I (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            begin reading diaries written by the genealogy group I wondered how some could search for missing family tree members so far into other generations. I think someone is on a search, or was on a search into the 1800`s according to a diary I read recently. And a hit was produced.

            Wow, your description in "Step-people" answers my question. So many wives and so many children is bound to produce a clan that choose to venture far away to start a life in a distance world, or country.

            History shows that this has indeed happened. I am not a religious person, but all one needs to do is see the Bible to note how people move around through time.

            Your story is fascinating and I continue to learn.

            Old men tell same old stories

            by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:56:07 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            • dynamics are interesting in so (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:

              many ways, and multiple marriages often include long generations. My own siblings are spread over 20 years, but my maternal grandfather was 41 years younger than his oldest half-sister, and 21 years younger than his oldest niece.

              It's hard for me to understand how people find genealogy boring.

              "If you are sure you understand everything that is going on around you, you are hopelessly confused." Walter Mondale

              by klompendanser on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 01:56:43 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  klompendanser, your (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                klompendanser, cassandracarolina

                sibling history covers many years and it does not surprise
                me the long generations. If I understand correctly, are you saying your siblings continued to be born after 20 years, or rather, for twenty-years?

                Wow, the way you describe the ages of your maternal grandfather being 41 years younger than his oldest half-sister, and 21 years younger than his oldest niece reminds me of a quiz I recall from my school days that asked to take a guess at what was the ages of each of them. This would confuse a genealogist wanna-be like me any day.

                I find it a bit fascinating how you could possibly unravel all
                those years if you depended on that to do a genealogy search. I know this field is complicated and confusing, but to find genealogy boring by anyone is more confusing to me.

                Old men tell same old stories

                by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 03:24:59 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  my youngest brother was born (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  2 weeks before our oldest brother's 20th birthday ... so the five of us kids certainly had very different experiences in our growing up years, and we certainly didn't get in each other's way too much.

                  Looking at grandpa's family  was an interesting challenge ... I had names/dates/states, but putting together a coherent narrative took some doing. In the 1860 Wisconsin census, there were two children "missing" from the household ... it took a lot of extra digging to find the daughter from the first marriage living with her maternal grandparents in Ohio (she is buried in the family cemetery in WI), and the son from the second marriage with his maternal grandparents in Missouri (he never lived with his father). Even after I found them, I had a lot of blanks to fill in. Thank goodness for email, the internet, and patience.

                  "If you are sure you understand everything that is going on around you, you are hopelessly confused." Walter Mondale

                  by klompendanser on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 05:58:36 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Klompendanser, that your (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    klompendanser, cassandracarolina

                    youngest brother was born 2 weeks before your oldest one
                    is really not unusual. I was a bit confused on the previous
                    comment you made with the quiz-like comment I sent you.

                    I say not unusual because as you well know, some parents
                    have children into their pretty old ages. So for your oldest
                    brother being twenty years older than the youngest is not
                    confusing to me anymore, that is really so cool. Now  I understood what you meant with births in your family tree.

                    It is interesting that you mention missing siblings in the 1860 Wisconsin census report. In my dairy yesterday I
                    wrote of my aunts and uncles. I have a copy of the 1940
                    San Antonio(Bexar county) Texas census report. My oldest
                    aunt Hortencia, who I mention in my diary, is not on the 1940 report. Before I read what you write here in that respect, I never even though about that. I guess it is due to my own personal knowledge that I lived in her home as a child, as I have also written.

                    As I get deeper in this genealogy journey, well, actually I feel like I am getting deeper. Yesterday I got some sad news from a source that cannot assist me further in my search for those siblings I write about. I have no surnames -- of the siblings or names and surnames of the fathers. I expected that message. I was thinking of asking our group if their is any possibility to find out the number of children my mother had from 1900 to 1945? I do have my mother`s name and any information that would be needed to track her trail in those years.

                    It has been on my mind and I would not burden you with getting into something this difficult, if indeed it is.

                    Is is educational and refreshing to read what you write
                    Klompendanser. Thank you.

                    Old men tell same old stories

                    by Ole Texan on Thu Jul 12, 2012 at 05:37:45 AM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  "number of children your mother had" (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:

                      these are ideas off the top of my head, but it would be worth picking the brains of people in the group that live in TX ... maybe in the next open thread...keeping in mind that rules/laws on this sort of thing vary from state to state due to privacy considerations.

                      * Here in MN, the state Historical Society has an online database for birth and death records where you can search on mother's maiden name (including spelling variations) alone for a range of years. See these links for examples:



                      Now this isn't an exact science, but it would be very helpful if this sort of thing is available for free in Texas!

                      * Look at your own birth certificate carefully ... on mine, it has info on where I ranked in terms of live births for my mother. Of course, this may not be the case in Texas, but if it is and you could somehow get a copy of the birth certificate of your youngest known sibling, it would be a start. This can also be kind of spendy and time-consuming, so help from someone in Texas might be critical.

                      ** This is kind of an off chance, but it sure could be worth a shot. If you know the date and location of your mother's death, see if any probate records are available from that county. Even if there is no will or estate per se, there may be a list or schedule of known heirs/issue, with info on their locations. (I have copies of the records of my g-grandmother...she had no will, no property, but listed all children from both her  marriages and where they were living. It also had copies of the bills from her final illness and noted what the funeral expenses were.) Again, this is an off chance, but it usually takes a phone call to find out if there even IS a record, and obtaining copies usually isn't so expensive or time-consuming.

                      Again, you might want to post in Friday's open thread to get more eyes and brains on it.

                      "If you are sure you understand everything that is going on around you, you are hopelessly confused." Walter Mondale

                      by klompendanser on Thu Jul 12, 2012 at 07:56:14 AM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  sorry about the bolding, I don't know (0+ / 0-)

                        how that happened. I'm not "yelling"  :)

                        "If you are sure you understand everything that is going on around you, you are hopelessly confused." Walter Mondale

                        by klompendanser on Thu Jul 12, 2012 at 07:57:34 AM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Not to worry (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:

                          Klompendanser about bold type. I have some of these same problems often. I know you wouldn`t yell...

                          Now let me address your last comment. It came as a blessing sort of. It gives me a least some hope. Everything you mention that it would help if I had...well I do.

                          I have safety wall, so to speak, with my half-sister which I have mentioned many times. She was born in San Antonio and is the last of my family to have remained at the address. She was born in Aug. 1941, and read the rest below and flip out Klompendanser.

                          Her birth certificate has a father for her that is not true. On her Baptism certificate my sister is listed with yet another name. A father in this document is also listed wrong.

                          And check this out: The date of birth of my sister shown on the Baptism document show Aug 1940 -- and not 1941 as in her Birth Certificate.

                          My sisster showed me a marriage certificate for my mother and "Rafeal Gomez" dated March 21, 1942. I also know that they divorced Dec. 1952 in a proceeding at a Lucas county, Ohio court in case #36289. I do not know the title of the filing, but I am sure it suffices with the case number and court.

                          I was at my mother`s death bed at a hospital when she expired. I have the date of death, her age at death and everything I would need to track her movements and births of siblings(not counting after 1940). After this date she continued her cycle which I have come to abhor.

                          Klompendanser my own birth certificate is also crappy. My mother`s name is not as I know it to be. It is short and spelled wrong. It shows no father for me. very simple and stupid for whoever did those things in those days.

                          Everything I know today that I have written with a new energized effort comes from my half-sister. My youngest aunt still lives and became close to my sister during a stint at a job where still another older aunt worked side by side with her. Imagine the stories she tell me over the phone when I told her what I was doing.

                          Please excuse me for dragging this a tad to long. I will keep in mind your suggestion that I write on Friday`s open thread...See you there Klompendanser if you are busy today.

                          Old men tell same old stories

                          by Ole Texan on Thu Jul 12, 2012 at 08:52:12 AM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

    •  We go waltzing, wa-wa-wah waltzing, with bears (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cassandracarolina, klompendanser

      We have the in-laws versus the out-laws scenario in my family as well.  A new baby, especially if it is the first baby born in a while, is a chance for a family to reclaim it's stake in the very concept of family. Claims are made on the little one; does s/he have so-and-so's chin or such-and-such's eyes and so forth.  I know this can be troubling and make you feel left out, but, trust me, this too shall pass.

      Babies are like shiny new cars when they first come into the world.  Everyone wants to experience this new being and make a claim on them.  Then the babies start to grow and demand time and effort and take away sleep and so forth.  Parents return to the real world, the world that very much will have you in it. This is when you will shine.

      My advice, take the newborn into your arms and sing to them whenever you get the chance.  (I love singing, "Waltzing with Bears" because it's almost autobiographical in my case, LOL.)  

      Hold this child, love them, snuggle them, sing to them and give them a reason to know that you too are family.  Because you are. And you will take them, "waltzing, wa-wa-wah waltzing, waltzing with bears" in your own special way. That is love, real love, and children feel that and remember it and remember who gave it to them, unconditionally. That kind of love really defines family, much more than sharing hair or eye color. Just love 'em and it will come back to you three-fold.

      •  Your kind thoughts bring a tear to my eye (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TayTay, klompendanser

        but of the very best kind, TayTay. My dear departed father would always sing to me, as would the grandmotherly lady who babysat while my mother was at work.

        My father had degrees in musicology but later got a degree in mechanical engineering at night school when I was a toddler. He worked full time during the days, and attended classes four nights a week. Nonetheless, he spent time with me every evening, reading from electronics textbooks in lieu of kids books, and singing made-up songs that we put together about the "three potentiometers" rather than the three bears.

        Your description of the shift from the "new" baby mode to normal living is great, and it paralles what I've been thinking. In the first year, I imagine that my husband and his ex-wife and the parents of my step-daughter-in-law will all establish their primacy, and I will need to keep myself from taking this too personally.

        I have a lot of love to give, and it doesn't have a "shelf life". Perhaps as the novelty wears off (or a sibling appears), my day will come.

        Thank you for some fine, fine advice, TayTay. I really appreciate it!

        Some drink deeply from the river of knowledge. Others only gargle. -- Woody Allen

        by cassandracarolina on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 07:29:18 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  This is a child of your heart (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cassandracarolina, klompendanser

          and it certainly shows that you have much heart to give.  

          Just give it. Opportunities will come. Seize them. Laugh, sing, play, tell stories and simply enjoy this new life in your family.  Have a little faith that the child will know love when they see it. And that, because of people in his life like you, will know how to return it.

          Simply be with the little one when the chance arises.  The rest will follow.

          BTW, tomorrow I will greet a new grand-nephew for the first time.  He was born last Sat.  We will go wa-wa-wa-waltzing, because it's never too soon to do that.  And I will love him every chance I get and trust that he will feel it and remember it. My only message is, hey kiddo, I'm there for you, no matter what.

          I think you'll do fine. Relax and let it happen.

      •  TayTay, I wish I could (3+ / 0-)

        have been more articulate in my comment to my friend who is struggling with the notion of having a new addition to her family.

        Babies Rock!

        You are absolutely right TayTay from the beginning of your comment to the end. The part of your comment that really says it all is the "in-laws v the out-laws" scenario in your own family tree.

        No one sang "Waltzing with Bears" to me as a child. I am sure I would have liked that. Perhaps I would not have needed a reason to be here because love was given to me when it counted. So I hope my friend consider your advise.

        I could have taken more time in my comment to my friend but I am now comfortable knowing I said the right thing about the child she is expecting in her household.

        Old men tell same old stories

        by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 08:20:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Ole Texan, they know (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cassandracarolina, klompendanser

          I am sure of it. Your comments come from your concern and wish to provide comfort to another. It showed. It was there in the post. Don't worry about the words used; I think the heart behind it came through loud and clear.

          Bless you sir.  This Waltz is for you and me, on the house. It's never too late for a little waltz in the moonlight on a warm summer night. Sounds like you might enjoy it.

          •  TayTay I came back (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            to thank you for bringing this Waltz for you and me, on the house. I watched in amazement thinking how deep your imagination is to convey your message.

            Uncle Walter, although Prescilla Herdman never showed me his face is certainly a role model for what grandfathers or fathers yet, should be. To Waltz with bears in itself tells of trust, feelings and love -- to my imagination`s understanding.

            I might be wrong, but uncle Walter was loved as a person should love another member of his family.

            Thank you TayTay, I really appreciated your gift.

            Old men tell same old stories

            by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 11:02:05 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  You have done more in your comment, Ole Texan (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          TayTay, klompendanser

          than you can imagine. The comment threads in your diaries are like a warm hearth on a cold winter's day. When we show up, we know that we will be treated with unconditional love, a cup of hot cocoa, and a respite from whatever ails us.

          Don't change a thing!

          Some drink deeply from the river of knowledge. Others only gargle. -- Woody Allen

          by cassandracarolina on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 09:00:37 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  well said. n/t (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TayTay, klompendanser
  •  Families of Origin (10+ / 0-)

    I wish you luck in your sister quest and peace as you sort out your place. I read earlier today that Ghengis Khan's genes are in 1% of the world's population. It may be that the apple didn't fall far...

    "Hope has two beautiful daughters. Their names are anger and courage. Anger at the way things are and courage to see that they do not remain as they are."

    by sccline on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 05:53:47 PM PDT

    •  Hello sccline. I see (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cassandracarolina, klompendanser

      my own adult son and daughter together in my mind when they were children.

      Stretched out on the floor on their tummies with one coloring book between them. My daughter being a year older had the first shot of using a certain crayon to paint on a picture.

      When she finished, she would pass the crayon to my son. Only then could my son use a crayon. I would sit there and watch them and wondered even then what if I had had a sister. Would I had been as tolerable to her as my son is?

      The togetherness and closeness of two siblings is priceless, as they still maintain that closeness even after both being married with families of their own.

      Now I am wondering if I could even connect with Alicia, the girl sibling I prepared myself to find. I have seen some Historical scenes and writings as you describe Ghengis Khan`s genes. Thank you for this forgotten nugget.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 07:12:13 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  We have a similar skeleton in my family. (11+ / 0-)

    My grandfather and grandmother had six children.  At some point he also fathered a daughter with another woman. She was not the youngest either. My grandmother wouldn't allow her to be spoken about and most of the children sided with their mother at whatever point they became aware of it, as families do, in hushed tones and significant silences. Nevertheless, family lore has it that my grandfather made provision for her, and when he lay dying asked for her. My grandmother absented herself from the house so the young woman could enter the house and see him, brought by one of my uncles or perhaps a different member of the extended family.  

    Those were different times and oh so hard on people! So much heartache and shame, so unnecessary!  I have ached for the little boy that you were, caught up in the bad behavior of the adults around you, all those women.  Times were hard, I know, and they were unable to imagine the world through the eyes of an innocent.

    Thank you for sharing your story; it is compelling.  

    •  Not that much different today... (3+ / 0-)

      My first wife discovered she had quite a number of half-siblings, well after she reached adulthood.

      Perhaps there's more tolerance for this today, but not a lot more. I think it substantially diminishes the family frictions in my ex's case that her father died some years ago.

      •  eyesoars I think you (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cassandracarolina, eyesoars

        make an excellent point that "not that much different today". But I think that today the difference is that people do not care anymore about marriage period.

        People today choose to forgo marriage and live together as some call "shacking" together and having children only to later walk out on these innocent kids. Of course not all couples are the same and I do not bash this type of arrangement in adults.

        Sometimes I guess I was born way ahead of my time. I never could cope with seeing children suffer, without parents or if they did, divorced parents and half-siblings. But I have come to understand that we cannot choose a life. We only get one pass in this theater of life. My own admission was costly.

        Old men tell same old stories

        by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 09:06:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Indeed our family tree (3+ / 0-)

      skeletons appear to be carbon copies bluedust. My grandfather sired seven children. I am now only trying to determine if my oldest aunt Hortencia was actually biological sibling to my other aunts. She does not appear on the 1940 census report that I have in that household.

      Neither does my mother. I do know for a fact the my mom was born out of wedlock to another young lady that I now understand was my real grandmother.

      The way you describe the conduct against the child that your grandfather had out of wedlock is exactly the way my mother was treated by all of my aunts. I wrote in one of my diaries that my grandfather favored my mother above all the rest of his sons and daughters. This infuriated them and I think that rage triggered that hate against me when I came to live with them. I remember my grandfather would always ask me if I had heard from my "nana", a word he
      always used for my mother. I never understood that love he felt for my mother.

      It is unfortunate not to know when exactly my grandfather passed away. While alive he never mistreated me and in fact, he would sometimes show compassion for my situation. I also wonder how my mother viewed his death, as she was still alive then.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 08:41:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well Tex, good luck on your journey (6+ / 0-)

    You seem to be sailing uncharted waters very well.

    I've managed to track a couple of strands back to Europe in the early 1800's.  But I just have to navigate some pretty straight forward paths.  You've got quite the tangled web to un-weave.

    Good Luck, keep us posted.

    “that our civil rights have no dependence on our religious opinions, any more than our opinions in physics or geometry.” Thomas Jefferson

    by markdd on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 08:16:55 PM PDT

  •  republished to the group, Ole Texan (5+ / 0-)

    You are making amazing progress, and I understand how the old wounds you've been uncovering still give pain.

    The cycles you speak of ... it is easy to fall into cycles, but they can be broken once they are examined and understood and put into a larger context. I've written about some of the skeletons I've found in the family closet -- even though the linked examples were from a pretty long time ago, I found I was swept up not only by the bald facts, but have wanted to learn all I can about the communities, the larger historical context, and what happened next in their lives. And then I wonder what my own conduct would be had I been there.

    I hope you will continue to share your findings with us.

    "If you are sure you understand everything that is going on around you, you are hopelessly confused." Walter Mondale

    by klompendanser on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 09:15:03 PM PDT

    •  Klompendanser hello. (3+ / 0-)

      I saw you as an experienced genealogist from the start. In fact I appreciate your share of responsibility for me being here as a member. I already said that previously I guess.

      I have come to really, really ponder if this cycles phenomenon I write about is truly a fact. I say this because my own "baby mom" who was born to be my half-sister who I love beyond words, was yet another child my mother had. And then came another half-sister. One that I have never mentioned online. I still love her the same but she is not dependent on anyone. She is an intellectual girl that I see or hear from very little, except on my Birthdays and on Xmas or other Holidays.

      As you describe your searches finding skeletons from such a long time ago would discourage me to continue, I think, I do not know yet. Maybe as I travel in this supposedly short journey I may be led to far away wider lands.

      I have discovered, despite my earlier beliefs that my grandfather came from Portugal, that he in reality was an Italian..So who knows klompendanser I may yet turn out to be a genealogist.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 09:31:03 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  glad to read your story (4+ / 0-)

    and see your diary in my queue.

    So sorry that the family was too foolish to know not to blame the innocent. How terrible for them to treat you and your mother so poorly. Perhaps, however, you know that these cruel people are not your people.

    I listen to a genealogy podcast, the genealogy guys, and one of them tells the story of a Great Uncle of his, Brisco. Through his genealogy research he learned that his uncle was the son of his grandfather  and another woman. Brisco was brought home with the grandfather and his wife (not the child's mother) raised him. There was a great deal of conflict and he was eventually cast out of his father's house. As far as the genealogy guy knew he and the family were not in contact after that. He lived the rest of his life on his own. He died and was buried with no marker in another state. The genealogy guy, after finding where he was buried, had a stone placed.

    My point is, I think that this was not uncommon, and the more I research, the more I realize how complicated and crazy most families are, my own included. Cassandracarolina is right on the money.

    Anyway, keep up that search! Glad it has been fruitful so far.  

    •  the generosity of (3+ / 0-)

      genealogists transcends politics.
      if not all other artificial divisors.

      i'm due for a photocopy of a 1947 book of poems by a great-great aunt, from a loose relative i "met" via find-a-grave. other such folks have shared other things with other folks, apolitically.

      that, dear compadres, is serendipity. ;)

      Addington's Perpwalk: TRAILHEAD of Accountability for Bush-2 Crimes.
      * Join: OBAMA'S TRUTH TEAM *

      by greenbird on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 02:42:25 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  How right you are (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cassandracarolina, klompendanser

        greenbird. Here at GFHC I have found true generosity as well as friendships.

        I will take nothing away from the Dkos community when I post there. I have been treated well and with generosity as well. But here I do not see that back and forth bickering I have noticed lately there. It is my community and I think some need some elbow room to move their opinions too.

        I would not call that articial divisors even if you did not mean it that way. I am a soldier here and do not complain.

        Ah, there is the word that stumped me earlier;


        I will say I think I have found it here.

        Old men tell same old stories

        by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 09:53:43 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  larmos this thing (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      of children being born out of deceit and out of wedlock and then brought into a lion`s den is akin to my own existence as a child.

      Yes this creates a lot of friction with the rightful sons and daughters in a particular household. I can see how hurtful it was for Brisco and the price of being cast out of that home is something that resonates with my own grandfather and why I now am on this journey to see if others suffered as I did on account of my grandfather.

      It must have been a terrible thing to live into in Brisco`s case. I have to feel for him even today.

      after all, without him on the picture, my mother would not have been born. All the pain could have been averted. But like I have written, I could never choose this life.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 09:41:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Sometimes when we are researching our (5+ / 0-)

    family history we learn more than we really need to know.

    My father's family history convinced me that I shouldn't go beyond the basic vital statistics.  Kidnappers, robbers, you name it, they did it and everyone knew they did it and didn't bat an eye.  They were gangsters.

    The religious fanatics didn't buy the republican party because it was virtuous, they bought it because it was for sale

    by nupstateny on Tue Jul 10, 2012 at 10:23:02 PM PDT

    •  nupstateny, I heard that (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      klompendanser, edwardssl, nupstateny

      loud and clear. Although I did not find gangsters like you say, even if you are only joking. But you are right I did find things I really did not want to know.

      To unravel these things is both a question of the value it would have for me, and whether I want to keep digging.

      I have often said that when you find a something distasteful, stop digging. Here I have not dug that deep yet.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 09:59:11 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I only used vitals for my father's (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        family and not all of them, just the 20th century folks..

        If they were gangsters in the 18th or 19th century, I'd call them colorful..:)

        The religious fanatics didn't buy the republican party because it was virtuous, they bought it because it was for sale

        by nupstateny on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 08:57:20 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  nupstateny thank you (0+ / 0-)

          for clarifying your search to just 20th century folks. And hey, if indeed we did not have gangsters in our history lives this world would be so boring, eh?

          And hell yes, they were colorful. I have seen the "Godfather" movie every time it is rehashed on tv. I think it was Don Corlone who said:

          "A man who does not visit his family is not a good man".

          I think that quote is fitting for this genealogy group. We just want to find our family to visit even after centuries.

          Old men tell same old stories

          by Ole Texan on Thu Jul 12, 2012 at 05:49:49 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Not all hobos were the gentle homeless (4+ / 0-)

    Family lore has it that my grandfather, a vagabond, bootlegger, swindler, and deadbeat dad had killed a railroad "bull"(Railroad Policeman) during the course of his hobo boxcar riding days.

    It was only rumor, but shows not all hobos were simply unfortunate.

    This is a guy who worked briefly at an "Old Folks Home" and stockpiled all the uneaten boiled eggs. When it was time to skip town, he put out a big basket of the old boiled eggs with a sign reading, "Guaranteed Fresh".

    Disclaimer: Weapons of Mass Destruction and terrorists may vary according to region, definition, and purpose. Belief systems pandered separately.

    by BlackBandFedora on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 05:58:25 AM PDT

    •  BlackBandFedora, I agree (3+ / 0-)

      with you. Not all Hobos were the gentle homeless kind. Yes
      there were many Hobos like your grandfather, vagabonds and what not.

      Any Hobo or any person who tried to get a free ride on a train was fair game to the "bull" as you describe the job my own grandfather did when I lived at his home.

      People were just trying to survive starvation by jumping illegally on trains to move from one place to another. That your grandfather was the things you say he was, is not the reason he killed a railroad bull...Everyone hated these goons as I described my own grandfather. I would have to think that the "bull" your grandfather killed made a mistake by messing with the wrong Hobo, your grandfather.

      Yes admittedly, everyone had a scheme in those days from selling rotten eyes to spoiled fish, or meats. It was not fun in those days. A mere hop on a train could cost a man his life.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:09:54 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  The first time I read "A Christmas Carol" (3+ / 0-)

    my immediate reaction was, "Wow, how could Charles Dickens have known my Grandfather?"  Dickens description of a cold, unfeeling man without a connection to anyone in his life seemed to fit my Grandfather well.

    I sometimes wonder how my mother learned to love. She grew up in a family where her Father pitted his 7 children against each other and had them compete for basic things, like love and attention.  My Mom learned that family didn't necessarily mean who could speak damaging words, or hurt the other person first from my Dad. My Dad, who's family experienced such grinding poverty and separation and loss, taught my mother that sometimes when people say, "I love you," they mean it.

    My Mom was not perfect and the scars from her upbringing were real and have been there all her life.  But she learned how to love outside of her birth family.  And that made all the difference to me and my brothers and sister.

    We have the families we are born into and the families we choose to make. It sounds like you chose not repeat the mistakes of the past. Bravo, my friend, bravo.  This is functional forgiveness and humans usually like it so much they think it divine.

    •  TayTay I have to (4+ / 0-)

      admit that I envy your upbringing among your brothers and sisters. You are indeed the shinning light I finally found to my diary today.

      Most other comments were by people who have experience some type of skeleton oriented past with some member of a free tree. While it is true that life is not all roses and candy, I am happy for you.

      While you do not express a feeling towards your grandfather who made life for your mother miserable, I do think and feel pain for her. I learned to hate my own grandfather as a child, perhaps it was an omen for me.

      If you say the things you do about your upbringing as a child, and obviously into adulthood, then I can safely say that your mother is one of a kind. Oh, you would never imaging how I wish I could say the same about mine. You also say the right thing when you mention the families we choose to make.

      I too have been lucky TayTay. I have two wonderful kids in their early thirties. They will always be kids to me. Both are now well settled and independent from all.

      Old men tell same old stories

      by Ole Texan on Wed Jul 11, 2012 at 10:29:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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