Diana Banana Pancakes

January 9, 2007

Broken family tree

Filed under: Uncategorized — dianabananapancakes @ 11:38 am

When I was pregnant with Ian, I was suddenly fascinated with family trees and geneology…well, not completely fascinated, but I was definitely interested in my family tree. Come to find out, not much is known and I have broken limbs on both sides….

Anyway, I found these pics I remember scanning from my mom before she moved to Hawaii back in February 2002, she has tons more in photo albums, and I was just trying to get them scanned before she left, so I dont know who most of the people are, when they were taken, etc. I’ve got to learn to scan the front and back of photos that have info on them. Except for the fact that the info on the back of these pics are all in Japanese, haha, so it still wouldn’t have done me much good without e-mailing them to mom for reference. Anyway, so I thought I’d share some pics. When I find out more info, then I’ll post that. I’ll share what I do remember.

My grandma and my mom. Sadly, I don’t know my grandma’s name….wierd right? My mom doesn’t talk about her past that much. I only know my grandma was, hmmmm, how shall we put it….she was the “life of the party” type of girl. She wasn’t responsible. My mom’s grandparents adopted my mom when she was a baby. I only have 3 biological cousins on my mom’s side, and I don’t know their names and have never met them. Anyway, so a picture of my grandma and my mom (Terumi).
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I BELIEVE (not sure, but will verify) that the older woman on the far left of the picture is my great-grandmother. The little girl is my mom, Terumi. The other younger girl in the background I don’t know who that is, I believe its one of my mom’s biological aunts. The problem is, when mom WOULD tell stories of her growing up, sometimes she would refer to an “aunt” and sometimes a “cousin” or “sister”….the problem was deciphering if it was a biological aunt, or an aunt through adoption (i.e. her mom’s sister). The only thing I know for sure is mom has one biological half sister, the rest of the “sisters” she refers to are actually her aunts by birth, but by adoption became her sisters. whew, I think I need to rest after that! You know how it is, in Japan it is all about saving face, not to hurt the family name….even though they grew up poor on a small island called Amami Oshima. Anyway, the woman on the far right of the picture is my grandmother. I’m not sure if the buildings behind them were the houses, mom said they grew up poor in kind-of a shack-type building, so I’m going to assume they are.
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My mom and not sure if neighborhood friends or her cousins…My mom is the girl on the left of the photo holding a baby.
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My mom’s family, I don’t know who anyone is except for 3, maybe 4 people….The older couple surrounding the flowers are my great-grandfather and my great-grandmother, both of whom passed when my mom was young, so after her grandparents passed, she lived back with her biological mom. My grandma is on the right side of the picture and I am not sure if that is my mom beside her or not….I’m assuming it is, I’ll have to verify.

This is my mother’s half-sister. My mom said she remembers a blond girl around, but not long, and she had seen pictures of her, but nothing more. Of course, saving face, this was never talked about. Apparently as she got older she got info through her aunts about this “baby” and eventually learned she had a half-sister. I don’t know anything about her other than her name is Terry. Her father was an American in the Air Force. She was adopted by an American family. Mom found her somehow I’m not sure when or how. She really didn’t want much to do with finding out about her past apparently, mom still sends her Christmas cards and photos, but apparently she doesn’t send stuff to mom anymore. She did once forward these pics, the only pic I have of her. Last I heard she lives in Pennsylvania, which is freaky knowing she is only 1 state away from me….but, what can you do. Mom said none of the Christmas cards has ever come back return to sender, she isn’t sure if she gets them or not, but she sends pics and info just in case, well, as of 5 or 6 years ago, not sure if mom still sends stuff to her.
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And these are my only cousins on my mom’s side, and I don’t know their names, don’t know when this picture was taken or how old they are now.
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So, now I have a new goal for part of my time I’m in Hawaii this summer….it is to get some more of mom’s photos scanned while she’s occupied spoiling Ian. I don’t know how much I’ll get done, but I plan to do as much as I can, as well as info on the pics.

My ultimate dream is for my sister, my mom, Ian and myself to go to Japan together, to see where my mom grew up, to meet what’s left of my mom’s family….that is my dream. **UPDATED TO ADD** I should probably mention that my grandmother passed away back in 1993. I had gone to Japan in 1993, but she couldn’t make it out to see me as her husband (who is an invalid) was ill, I did get to meet two of my mom’s cousins and their kids which was great….but I did not get to meet my grandmother. Technically I met her as I was born in Okinawa, Japan, and I got to meet her, my mom has pics of her holding me, I have one picture with her in it but I have to find it and scan it….but we left Japan when I was 18 months old, so I still say I never really got to meet my grandmother.

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1 Comment »

  1. very cool

    Comment by art — January 9, 2007 @ 1:16 pm | Reply


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