Monday, April 1, 2013

A is for Ancestor

This is the first day of the A to Z Challenge. I want to thank Arlee Bird, the founder. What an amazing, fun group and activity he has created. I feel super-special to be able to participate again this year. If you don’t know Lee, visit him at Tossing it Out and say hello. He's as special as his A to Z Challenge.

I’ve chosen Ancestor as my A-word.

Many of you know I’ve been dealing with some family issues since my mother broke her hip. She’s moved into a nursing home (for lack of a better word) and I’ve been clearing out her home. Sometimes I just sit and look at pictures I didn’t know she had and read notes and letters to her from family, and people I don’t know. Every note sings her praises. I believe those notes because Mom was a nurse. A perfectionist. Someone who went far beyond the call of duty. Being a caregiver is who she was/is deep down in her heart and soul.

Not me. I’m not like that at all. I don’t think my grandmother (mom’s mom--the one on the right) was either. And that makes me wonder about my ancestors. What exactly do we get from our ancestors? I wonder what traits, talents, mannerisms of the people you see here (my maternal grandparents and gr-grandparents), are so inherent in me that, no way can I disown them.

Is there a writer somewhere in my lineage that I haven’t found yet? I’m searching. I would love to find a connection to an author—s/he doesn’t even have to be famous!

Where do you think our talent comes from? Ancestors, God, or do we create it through our passion for … writing, art … jewelry design? A combination of the three? Do you think our environment plays a part too? Our birth order?

I appreciate the complexity of genetics but oh, how I wish it were simpler.

Take a look at these interesting quotes. I love them, don’t you? Especially the first two!

It is indeed a desirable thing to be well descended but the glory belongs to our ancestors. ~Plutarch

No man can cause more grief than that one clinging blindly to the vices of his ancestors.
~William Faulkner

Every man is a quotation from all his ancestors. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Your thoughts? I absolutely love comments!


L. Diane Wolfe said...

There isn't an author in my family, but there were several photographers, including my father.

Two years ago, I had to clean out my mother's house when she went into a care facility and I found all sorts of interesting photos.

Charles Gramlich said...

I definitely see some genetic characteristics from my mom. However,I'm generally much more of an introvert than most of my family and more of a reader. I'm the only one who writes fiction, though I have a brother and had a sister who did journalism work.

Shannon @I Survived and Now I Run said...

I think it comes from all around us, our ancestors, God and us! Blessings! Great A-Z post...found you through the list!

Traci said...

I think our ancestors have influnce over who we are, but the more immediate relatives that we are around have a greater influence. I hope your mother is well soon.

James R Tate said...

I think we inherit certain traits from our family. My parents and grandparents were hard workers, as are my siblings and myself. I don't know of any writers in the family, but I think we all are blessed with some gift. Some realize this gift and apply it, some never do. Great post! I'll be checking in.

Su-sieee! Mac said...

Hello. I'm so glad you dropped by my blog this morning. You've got me pondering about so many things. I think it is everything you mentioned that makes a writer. There is also the hard work of just making it financially work as a career.

I wish your mom well.

Stelios Perdios said...

Just dropping in from the A to Z Blogging challenge.

I, too, wish your mother well.

I'd like to think that I come from a long line of writers (Greek on my father's side, German on my mother's side), but I just don't know.

What matters, however, is that we keep writing in the present for God, family, friends, and, or course, our readers.

Have a great day!

Stelios Perdios said...

I'm dropping in from the A to Z blogging challenge.

I, too, wish your mother well.

I'd like to think I've got some writer ancestors, Greek on my dad's side, or German on my mother's. But I just don't know.

I guess what matters is that we keep writing in the present, so that someday our successors can look back and say that they are the descendants of writers.

Have a great day!

Stelios Perdios said...

My apologies for the double post.

Helen Baggott - Author Services said...

I so enjoyed your A - Z last year and you kindly supported my efforts. I'm not participating this year, but I shall follow your words of wisdom with interest.

Debra Ann Elliott said...

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and your words of encouragement. I love you post as I am a big genealogy nut!

Jess * Jessie * Jessy said...

Diane - I wonder if writers clean out their parents' house differently than nonwriters? :)

Charles - Never pegged you for an introvert!

Shannon - thanks for popping in. Hope you come back. :)

Traci - Thanks, and I agree with you.

James - sure have missed you.

Su-sieee - I love to make people ponder. Doesn't happen very often. :)

Stelios - love your comment so keep 'em coming!

Helen - you make me feel so good! Thank you.

Debra - thanks for coming to see me. Isn't genealogy fun?

Stelios Perdios said...

Thank you.

My internet connection went wonky after the first post, I so I wasn't sure if it went through. Then I forgot what I originally had said. lol

Darla Dumler said...

We are so unique and yet we have the traits of many of our ancestors eyes, hair, body build, talents, and beliefs. All in all what we do with the talents we get from God is still up to us. Prayers for your mother and you as you take this journey.

kathy said...

I love family history. My mum loves digging into it and uncovering all sorts of interesting tidbits about her heritage.

Good thoughts to your mother.