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Genealogy research takes me to many places, on the web, in libraries and in my heart. One site I looked at this morning includes an autoplay of Leonard Cohen’s song ‘The Partisan’. Today it was as if I listened to it for the first time.
“I have changed my name so often, I’ve lost my wife and children but I have many friends, and some of them are with me.” As I struggle finding relatives amidst their multiple name changes be they intentional or accidental, I too am changed by their stories, struggle and success. Some of what I have learned or seen through my research has caused me to sleep as tears streak my face. Photographs of Holocaust victims haunt me. Come morning however, I find resolve to go on with a renewed focus, to accept my own path, and endeavor to honor my relatives and ancestors, and do my part to make the world a better place.
I began doing some history on my family, genealogy and research years ago, ten perhaps. At some point in the last few months, I became ‘serious’ about this effort. And at the same time, I discovered that as I was finding out about the lives of my ancestors, I was finding myself in the process.
It’s not like I’m found now and in some sort of fixed state never to change again. I often get inspiration and am energized by others. Today I find inspiration on a blog titled I am and I am Not by Esther Cohen. She writes in the here and now about what is in front of her, what she looks like as she imagines what another sees, and what flow through her.
I’ll start blogging this research experience. Perhaps you will benefit from my research trails and trials. And family too may be interested in what I uncover, the hows and whys. This is a perfect task, the research that is, for I am an experienced librarian!
There are stories somewhere in my ancestry, lives and loves lived and lost. And new beginnings. As I dive into the history of family members, it changes me and becomes my story too. I hope you enjoy it. Feel free to make it your story too. You can add details about my family (private email is just fine), post your own relevant stories or tips. And recipes, oh, do share with me your family recipes for all to share and enjoy!