Some time today my great-niece, Lauren, will give birth to her first child, Audra. In some families, a great-great niece might be a distant relation. For me, she is a meaningful connection.
My half-sister, Judy, was Lauren’s grandmother. My nephew, Tom, was Lauren’s father.
I was seven when Tommy was born on Valentine’s Day, 1956. Judy and Larry were living with my parents and me in Washington, D.C. I remember my mother waking me up and telling me that they were going to the hospital because Judy was going to have her baby. I was taken next door to the Clopton’s house. Marsha Clopton put me back to sleep in a little attic room but it was so cold that I came down to her and Ned’s room and she let me crawl into bed with them.
When I woke up in the morning, I had a nephew. I went to school and told everyone that I was an aunt. In second grade, I was clearly ahead of the family curve.
Judy and Larry had one more child, Tracy. Tom and Julie had Lauren and TJ. Tracy and Don had Casey. My parents, Maxine and Casey, only had me.
Time passed and my family dwindled. Now I have Lauren, TJ, Tracy, and Casey. And Audra.
We are all links to our past and our future.
Welcome, Audra, to my chain.