Roots by Stephanie Ray

Published on 6 August 2021 at 08:00

Above Photo Courtsey of Stephanie Ray

Roots grow where they are planted. Even from one country to the next. Mine were transplanted from Germany! My Dad came to this country in the 1950’s, transferred for his job as a textile chemist.
Mom came a bit later with my brother on a trans-Atlantic ship.

They lived briefly in New Jersey and Virginia before moving to North Carolina. My Dad traveled a great deal which left Mom alone with my brother in a new country not speaking the language. I do remember her telling me the local German Deli was a big help.

The youngest of four , I was born in Charlotte, NC. A funny story I always heard growing up was when the Nuns said to my Dad , “ See you next year!” My Dad said ,” No you won’t !”with a smile on his face!

We had visits from relatives frequently and Mom also took us all to Germany! I was four and don’t remember it. I can just imagine though. Mom told me I was crying at take off and the stewardess gave me some plastic wings, which I was apparently pleased with!

A lifetime of memories. Both Mom and Dad wrote their stories of growing up in Germany and the War. I cried when reading it! Both Mom and Dad have journeyed on and I miss them terribly still!

One thing I wish I had done is ask more questions! I still have relatives in Germany. My Aunt, my Dad’s sister is still alive and recently turned 90.

One thing I would suggest for those wanting to keep family history is ask questions of your parents and Other relatives to capture the unique stories so they can be shared and passed down. Start early, make notes . I have many pictures and some of long ago. I don’t have all the names but know what side of the family they came from! I’m really grateful Mom and Dad wrote their stories.

Photos from Stephanie Ray 


by Stephanie Ray 

I am my Mothers daughter,

The youngest, a fledgling

Something I shared with  Mother

Also the youngest of six 

Born during a different time..

Never to enjoy the security of her Mother’s lap.

Transitions through war, then rebuilding, then peace

Brought her together with my father

Then to this country ..

Yet another transition 

Learning a new language 

Caring for the eldest 

while my father traveled the world

 to support the growing family.

Another move, another transition 

To rest in a new nest

Where I, the fledgling came to be, 

Held close in the security

Of my Mothers arms ..

Love freely given . Hugs abound

The lap of love  available always ...

The final transition in a dream, a gift to me , 

That she was free

She as a butterfly, flying to and  fro   

Weaving between us to say hello ...

and good bye.

I am my Mother’s daughter

Love abounds!


~ In loving memory of her mother


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