I have very little knowledge of my cultural history or family heritage. I have very few connections with family other than my parents and their siblings.
Prior to my maternal grandmother’s death I was very close to her. We spoke daily. If she didn’t call me, I called her. I wish I’d pushed her harder for truth. I wish I’d asked more questions. I didn’t know what I didn’t know and I didn’t know she wasn’t being truthful.
We looked into family history a few years after she passed, some things fit, easy. Directly back to the ship, family settled in Mudgee NSW. Easy.
But, the things she didn’t tell me. She was pregnant when she married my grandfather. He was a drinker, that she told us. She hunted him on his way when my mother was 9. And apart from one birthday gift posted to my mother, one of 5, and the only one to ever receive a gift, no one heard from him again.
I respected her, strong, brave, determined and raising 5 kids under 11 in a time when abused, single mother’s had very little support.
I applied for my grandfather’s death certificate. Discovered he had passed in 1980. The children from his second relationship, not much older than myself. Three brothers my mother never knew she had.
We ran into more problems, we dug deeper. My grandfather’s mother it seemed had a child out of wedlock, married, was widowed and married again. The date…biologically he belonged in the first marriage. The surname all 8 siblings were using was not correct.
A stat dec in his RAAF papers confirmed it.
Who are we?