For every client that I see, I draw myself a family tree or genogram of who is in their family. For example, Mom is 45, has some depression and had a life-threatening illness at the age of 14. Dad is 47, moved to this country at the age of 11 and had to learn a whole new way of life. How much do you know about past relatives? Learning what major challenges they experienced and how they overcame them, can help you with overcoming some of your own challenges. Learning about major family achievements can be very rewarding as well.
Engage in these conversations NOW, before it is too late and the information is lost forever. Doing some of my own family research, I discovered I had a family member who was an inventor and is on the official patents for the meat slicer and the modern rotating cement mixer. Entrepreneurship and creativity is a part of my lineage. What could be a part of your lineage? Where did your love for cooking come from? Where did your struggle with addiction come from? Was it a family secret or does your family share quite easily?
Be prepared, though, if a family member does not choose to share something. Bringing up the stories of how someone died or a major tragedy in someone's life can be difficult. Respect what information is willing to be shared.
Also, different relatives may recall the same incident but with varying details, either because of their age at the time or how close they were to the situation. Document what you can. Talk to several relatives. Share your knowledge. You might even make a few new acquaintances in another country during your research.
Ask relatives about behaviors too. Who was an introvert? Extrovert? Class president? Who took charge of situations and who followed the crowd? What talents and occupations did your relatives have? How did your relatives pass away? Discovering the major medical issues of your family's past is extremely helpful as well.
To see an example of a genogram or family tree, search on Google Images for many examples. Create the structure that works for you.
Enjoy your adventure in family history. I encourage you to take that information and use it to live a full and wonderful life. What would you like to be put on the family tree about you? Are you fulfilling that legacy? If not, maybe I can help. Connect with me through my website,
and let's work together to create your part of the family tree in a positive way.
Happy 4th of July everyone!!
Have fun and be safe. Living in this country is a privilege that I am thankful for every day.