Why “Finding Grandmothers”?

I thought of this name a few years ago. It was the title of a piece of writing that I never published anywhere. Some pertinent information has changed, so I need a major re-write on it, but the gist of the story is this.

Alice2In 2002 I had a horrible year. Everything that was lose-able, I lost. Let’s just leave it at that. So by 2003 I was licking my wounds, rebuilding a life, and I strongly felt a grandmotherly presence. I do that. Feel things. My cousin says in inherited that from my Great Grandma. They called her “Little Grandma”. Her name was Alice Rosaline Goddard (see photo) and she married Alexander and then Sylvester Crabtree. Her father had the Cherokee blood, and everyone said that Little Grandma could see and hear spirits. I think some of that has been passed down.

In 2003 I just always felt comforted, watched over, and that feeling and events that encouraged that idea lasted til about 2006. So really the “Finding Grandmothers” started when I realized that presence was a grandmother. Alice perhaps. I started to do genealogy work on Alice’s father John Goddard, determined to find that Cherokee line. That started in May 2007 when something in my back went “spoing” and I laid flat on my back for 10 days. Couldn’t do much else but surf the internet. Since then my search has finally moved outward, to other branches of the family tree. I never could find much solid evidence of the Cherokees.

As I’ve researched, over the last seven years, I’ve aged. This seems to have been that peak time where I’ve gone from young to older. Topped the hill and started down the backside, so to speak. In finding my grandmothers-or rather greats and great-greats (all the way back to the 700’s now, I think in some cases) I’ve been finding myself. I never had a child, so there won’t be grandchildren-I won’t actually BE a grandmother, but I will be old. I will be aging, with grace perhaps. Another 20 to 40 years to really LOVE my life and live it for the right reasons-rather than all of the impetuous and silly reasons of youth. Deliberate living! Being a “Wise Crone”.

So for me, as I am finding my grandmothers, I am finding pieces of myself. Not just my ancestry but snapshots of older women that I resemble now, in lines around my mouth, the never-graying hair or the hearing of spirits.
Finding grandmothers. Finding me.

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One thought on “Why “Finding Grandmothers”?

  1. Wow Isabel, what a wonderful journey you are on. How exciting and freeing it must be to know where you came from. You are an inspiration, I hope to someday look back and know my seven generations back. I look forward to being part of your journey by reading your blogs, and at times sharing over a cup of tea, and some good chocolate 🙂

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