Because life is a series of edits

Marriage and Family Paper (part 3)

In Family, Marriage, Seminary on December 3, 2006 at 1:03 am

In my genogram, I charted six generations – approximately 150 years – of my family, from my great-great-grandparents (mid-1800s) to my children (early 2000s). For my purposes here, the first and last generations have been included for little more than historic reasons, as space restrictions in representing the former and age limitations in understanding the latter came into play.

One more disclaimer: I have not fleshed out in great detail those branches of my family not directly in my particular line, as (again) space was limited and general statements seem to suffice in explaining any effects on me.

Other general background: as all lines of my family involve agriculture as a vocation, the Depression of the late-1920s and early-1930s seems particularly significant in shaping the attitudes and actions of those specific generations affected (for example, my great-grandmother, Rachel Dunham, would boil chicken bones for soup until they just melted, and she would not throw anything away).

The Depression significantly shaped both sets of my grandparents’ perspectives as well; growing up as kids during this time, they never had much, but were grateful for the little they had. While certainly not to the same experiential degree, it’s obvious to me that my exposure to their outlook and (limited) conversations about these times shapes my own “make do” mentality.

As a whole (and Depression not withstanding), the majority of my family have historically worked for and successfully earned a middle-class living, contributed to and invested in the (mostly small and rural) communities in which they settled, and avoided run-ins with the law, scandals, and otherwise “bad” behavior.

Ours is a humble but proud family of landowners and homeowners, church members and board members, farmers (my father) and teachers (my mother). I am grateful for my heritage and, though it is hardly perfect, it is better than most (which is another lovable idiosyncrasy of my family – things could always be better, but rest assured they could also always be worse).

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  1. Just wrote my own family/genogram paper that was due on December 1ts. It was interesting to stumble in on your blog and see you doing the same thing!

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