By Dale E. Lee
You don’t know who you really are until you know who your ancestors were.
Yes, I know that’s a bold statement, but think about it.
- Where where you born, and why?
- Why do you have the opportunities or non-opportunities you have in life?
- Why are you the height and weight you are?
- Why do you have the skin, hair, and eye color you do?
You define your ending line in life by the things you do improve your lot, but your ancestors define your starting line.
- Why were you Chinese, but you were born in America? Did your family come to America to work on the original railroad line?
- Or Dutch, but born in South Africa? Was your ancestor from the Netherlands, but served in the military in South Africa and decided to stay?
- Or Australian, but have relatives in India? Did a lateral line ancestor go to India with the India trading company and have a family there, but your side of the line stay in England, and your Father have a job opportunity he decided to take in Australia?
- Or middle eastern, but living in France? Did your family flee the Syrian war and end up there?
- Or American, but living in Kenya? Did you find opportunities in America working for Unicef or another foreign aid program?
Yes, these may be all hypothetical from your standpoint, they may not have happened to you personally, but they did happen to someone. And your story may be just as interesting as theirs.
Your current geographical location and the opportunities you have been given are largely dependent on who your ancestors were and the decisions they made in their lives. There are reasons why some end up in the Americas, while others end up in the Asian Continent. Who your children will be, and the opportunities they will be given, are largely determined on what you do with your life and what you teach them. You don’t really know who you are unless you understand who your ancestors were and the trials and decisions they made in their lives. Family History is a discovery of who your ancestors were and what they did, but along the way, you also discover who you are.
And once you discover who you are, you can pass it down to your children, and they can discover who they are.