To forget one’s ancestors is to 
be a brook without a source,
a tree without a root.
                      -Chinese proverb

My paternal grandmother wrote a family history and included this proverb at the end. She believed that it was important to remember and learn from our family’s past.  

Knowing and learning from your past is a critical element from a therapeutic perspective. Our families give us a blueprint of how to be in relationships, how to respond to problems, and how to show love to others. While your past is not your destiny, you are much more likely to repeat patterns from your family if you have not examined and learned from them. It is usually not enough to just want to be different. You have to understand how that pattern or characteristic is present in your family, what kept it repeating, and what will make you likely to do it too. 

I have told clients before that your past is most likely to hurt you if you are too afraid to turn around and look at it. 

All that being said, our families give us many things to celebrate and want to carry on the the next generation. Today I am thinking about how when you came to Grandma’s house, she would always say “Oh goody-goody! Come in and have a handout.” I hope I can make people feel as welcomed in my house and she did in hers. 

1 Comment
  • Stephanie
    Posted at 20:04h, 07 August Reply

    Great post, Jen. We should all strive to be more like Grandma Crystal for sure. Thanks for sharing!

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