I sent the above to my papi this morning. It certainly hold true for my father. His family is EVERYTHING. He remains calm in a firestorm, he holds steadfast when everyone is wavering and he is fastidious in his correspondence. He welcomes family from near and far into his home for a night, a weekend, a vacation and in the 80's even turned the basement into an apartment for family to come to study and live. It occurs to me that a man learns how to prioritize goals and create dreams from his father.
This leads me think about my ancestors. I spend so much time researching my past of men... fathers, grandfathers I'll never meet. I'm left to imagine what they were like... what were their goals, dreams, aspirations? As I look on the census in my family in the 1900s most often it lists agricultor. Yet there is something unsatisfying about seeing that. Men who worked the land, cut the cane, picked the platanos - I wonder, did they have big plans? Did they imagine life outside of the island? They were after all the descendants of explorers, maybe conquistadors, at the least, they were adventurers who sailed across the ocean to another land far from what they knew. But were they plunderers looking for fortune? Were they simple men looking for land for their families? I know some were slaves, yanked from their homes probably always yearning for the family they lost. I know some were Tainos wondering what their future would be as these intruders came ashore. Yes, a genealogist wonders these things.
I can only be satisfied that the generations begat my grandpa who was dedicated to providing for and encouraging his children to succeed and loving his grandchildren. He gave me my father who has been the most amazing... with goals, dreams, and aspirations for not only himself but his family which includes his grandson who looks up to him with unwavering admiration and respect. I may not ever know the men of the past but I am blessed to see the present as it is being passed to the future.