Ooops I am very sorry the holidays appear to have got in the way of my blogging. Been to Penrith and Farnborough near Banbury since I last wrote! I'm sorry sometimes I seem to get in the way of myself if that makes sense?
My last blog was about meeting my auntie who I had not seen since I was about 10. Sure enough some time back in August we all met up at the Tudor Rose for lunch. I had no idea what to expect. My cousin brought his family which we felt made it easier for me to slot in. It was almost my Aunties birthday so their focus was on her.
Funny thing is she has always been my Aunty Jean, I have never thought of her as anything else. I mean just as my cousins mum. And Uncle Raymond was always just that. I think he was a bit surprised when I asked him if it was ok to call him that, but he grinned and said of course I could.
In the end it was just a family outing with both my Aunty and Uncle reminiscing and telling tales that even my cousin had not heard before. There were no recriminations. I could so easily have asked why they had made no effort to see me in all those years. Then again, I had gone to college only two miles from where they lived and had never tried to see them so I suppose it was all pretty even in apathy or awkwardness.
As we walked back to our cars I was quite touched that she linked her arm in mine and could see she was genuinely moved at our meeting. I must admit I felt a kind of peace as if some of the parts of my life I always felt had not been filled, or had been left in limbo were being healed, pulled together. I;m not sure meeting my father would have the same effect, I think my Auntie was the one to pull together my roots.
Last week we met again, this time for me to show her some of my research into the tree. I took a load of photos of my brothers and children at different times so she could see how we had all grown up and also to spot the family likenesses. We talked about all the certificates I had purchased that revealed so much information about our ancestors. It seems the healing process was a two way street as my auntie read about the deaths of her parents finding answers to questions she had previously been unable to ask.
When we start looking into our family history, we never know what we might conjure up or which myths we will dispel. I know that my journey has been a fascinating and very rewarding one. I'm not sure where the story will go next for me and my aunty, there are a lot of toes I have to be careful not to step on, but so far it has been a very positive experience and one I am glad I worked for.