You may think this post will be about balancing our “grand obsession” with making time for the living family members….it’s not. We each have to find our own balance and speaking from my personal experience my balance has shifted a lot over time as i am sure yours has as well. It is about recognizing an opportunity, assessing its risks and “going for it”.
I had an opportunity this past weekend to meet up with a 5th cousin (maybe, but more about that later) visiting from Denmark. She was going to be in LA for a week and wanted me to come an meet up with her. The dilemma is obvious….she found me through a rootsweb posting which showed the possible/probable link to her grandmother. I had corresponded with her on and off (mostly off) for over a year before she offered to meet. I thought about whether it was a scam, was I in any danger, could I just fly to LA for lunch? What if we didn’t hit it off?
As you can guess, we hit it off instantly. Helle is warm and engaging. I do not think we stopped talking for 22 hours. She had brought pictures of her family. I brought the research I had already done. The problem was: there is a 10 year gap in my Danish soldier’s life and during that time he fathered, we think, a child, Anne Kirstine Suhm/Suhmsdotter/Danielsdotter but this has not yet been confirmed. so, Helle and I may not be related at all! but at a minimum I found a new friend and had a great day in Disneyland.
She also has a genealogist friend in the northern area of Denmark who she will ask if he will help break down this 10 year gap (it used to be 30 years!) and resolve whether or not Anne Kirstine Danielsdotter, runaway wife (love that!), is the daughter of Daniel Suhm.
The postings through the holidays will be sporadic but I wish you the very best of Thanksgivings.
What I have done since the last post: gone to Disneyland with my maybe 5th cousin, visited my brother, and worked very hard on my class assignments. I have read a lot on the Civil War and on health care and prisons of that era. Chilling but life affirming information.