July 23, 2018
The idea began five months ago at my mother’s funeral. Cousins from both sides of the family talked about getting together at a party of our choosing, instead of waiting for a death or a wedding to bring us together again. We needed time to get to know each other; we needed time to share family history and stories.
Only one uncle and one aunt remain of my mother’s entire generation, so it was up to us The Cousins (Los Primos) to tend to the family tree. Our parents and grandparents were brothers and sisters to each other, and we the cousins had once also been close, childhood friends, but marriages, careers, and travels had taken us down different paths. It took a small group of The Cousins (Los Primos) from my mother’s side of the family to take on the formidable task of hosting a matriarchal family reunion on short notice, but it was one amazing afternoon.
We have an astounding history; we have memorable stories, and by sharing them with each other, we hope to inspire future generations.
Because my mother’s family history was so important to her, I looked up what I could about her heritage, and I noticed a pattern of strong women:
- a great-great-grandmother who immigrated husbandless with her children to Texas from the state of San Luis Potosi in Mexico,
- a great-grandmother left penniless to raise four young teenagers during a time when widowed women were easily cheated out of their fortunes,
- a grandmother who raised her five children alone during the Great Depression and World War II while her husband went off to eke a living as a migrant worker for months at a time,
- and my mother who dropped out of school after the eighth grade to help her mother support her younger brothers and sisters.
There is a lot to be added to this history and to these stories, but the reunion has provided me with additional names and dates. There is a lot that needs to be revised. Genealogical records sometimes misspell or transpose names. They sometimes do not provide correct birthdates and dates of death. Hopefully, the information gathered at the reunion of Los Primos will help me fill in the blanks and send me in search for more information.
Most importantly of all will be the tribute to our antepasados and the stories of the grandmothers and their families, inspiring the future generations in our family to bravely strive for more.