I heard an author talking about her new book the other day. Oh! You want to know who it was? It was Dani Shapiro. She recently discovered her dad wasn’t her real, “biological” dad, and this information I’m sure, sent a shockwave through her entire bodily system. This, after a saliva sample containing her DNA had been sent off to Ancestry.com.
She wasn’t looking for a mystery-or having her life turned upside down, and decades of beliefs come crashing down with it. It was her husband, yes, let’s blame the sweet husband, who’d been curious about the genealogy thing. She’d gone along with it, and promptly forgot - until she got the results. The ensuing seismic tremor that must have rattled her insides when she saw the words, plain as day, printed on the page in front of her, and caused her to triple, quadruple check, to make sure there hadn’t been a mistake.
There it was. Fact: Indeed. She’s not her father’s daughter.
And yet, she is.
It got me thinking about family secrets, or secrets in general. It also got me interested in doing a genealogy test. I mean, my entire childhood I wondered if I belonged to my family of origin. They told me I’d been left in the hospital for several days after my birth, and there I was, years later, the only sibling without a baby book. Hmmm. Odd that. Just too busy? Too tired? Plus, my brothers are blonde, blue eyed and fair. I’m olive skinned with dark hair, and dark, brooding eyes.
Our family reigned with a capital D in the Dysfunctional department. This would naturally cause anyone not to want to be part of such chaos. This was also back in the day when “family secrets” were kept hidden. “Don’t air your dirty laundry!” Grandma’d shout, with her ever present snarl - driving the point straight home.
Don’t nobody mess with baby, and don’t mess with Grandma.