Day 4 — Hidden sister

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Maggie’s post about her sister has gotten me thinking …  Today is my grandmother’s birthday, and marks almost exactly five years since her death.  Today she would have been 104 or 106 (depending on whose data you trust).  She is my paternal grandmother, the one I most resemble — my round face and long-fingered hands, my slow temper, my bridgeless nose.  She is the one who spent the most time looking for her first grandchild, my father’s daughter, the older sister who is lost to me somewhere in the world.

My father never spoke about his first child.  I only know she exists because my mother told me about her.  I can’t think how that could have come up in casual conversation.  There must have been some reason she told me.  I’ll have to ask her.

I wish I could ask my father about her, about what he felt and thought when she was removed from his life, when his ex-wife took their daughter away.  My grandmother was convinced the ex-wife told her daughter that her father was dead.  And I guess that could certainly explain why she never came looking for us

I’ve always wanted to meet her, my secret sister.  When I was younger it was more about curiosity.  Now it’s about family, about feeling incomplete … and it’s about my grandmother.

Keeping our family connected was important to my grandmother.  Finding my half sister was important to her.  She had three grandchildren, and she loved us fiercely, but having a void where a fourth child should have been was hard for her.

I’ve never tried to find her … but I’m suddenly thinking I should

8 thoughts on “Day 4 — Hidden sister

  1. It’s funny how one story can spring forth another story.
    Thanks for the rich memory here and I think you should begin the journey to discovery (easy for me to say, right?)

    Kevin (logged in as one of my school accounts) aka dogtrax

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  2. Wow…here’s to you possibly beginning a journey! Thanks for being so bold to share on your blog.

    BTW, what’s OSY class? wasn’t sure. The book that I read was to my second-graders…but not sure if that was clear in my blog.

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  3. Thanks for the encouragement, everyone. I don’t really know how/if I should start looking. So many of the people with information have passed away. We’ll see.

    Cathy, ‘OSY’ stands for ‘Out of School Youth.’ I teach a pre-GED class for kids who’ve dropped out of high school … not exactly the audience for your book! I didn’t know what age you taught, but I figured it was younger kids. My students might not be interested, but I still am. I love children’s books!

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  4. Maggie, dammit

    You know, ever since I wrote that post I’ve been floored by the response. I can’t tell you how many emails I’ve gotten from people in your exact same situation. The world is apparently full of lost souls trying to reconnect. Incredible.

    I wish you luck on your own journey.

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