This All Saints Day

Suddenly all my ancestors are behind me. Be still, they say. Watch and listen. You are the result of the love of thousands. 

Linda Hogan


My mother


My father

Isn’t it beyond comprehension that each one of us – each one – is the result of the love of thousands, of generations upon generations of ancestors?

I found the Hogan quote posted by a Facebook friend today. It’s exceedingly appropriate for this All Saints Day.

It makes me think of those who came before me, those whose love produced me.

People named Calvin, Janelle, Effie, Dower, Ivens, Irene, Mary, Walter, Jacob, Addie, Lawrence, Bunyan, Sallie, Sarah, Lemuel, Lavinia, Ephraim, Julia, Ellen, John, Margaret, Susan, Ezekiel, Thomas, Salome, Joshua. Lots of sturdy Biblical names, both Old and New Testament ones. And these are just some of the ones from this continent. There are ones from various parts of Europe that precede them. And ones from other parts of the world that precede them.

Ancestors whose DNA is a part of me.

People whose loves and fears and cravings and aversions were passed down to me.

They’re all a part of me.

All of our ancestors are a part of each one of us.

Isn’t that mind blowing??

Today, this All Saints Day, a rainy day, a colorful-autumn-leaves kind of day, makes for a good day of reflection of who I am, who each of us is. And how those who came before us are a part of now, of today, because of their blood that flows in us.

They may not be on this side of the veil, but I feel their presence. They express themselves through me.

And in this way they live on.

I hope I’m doing their lives justice.

And I thank them for this opportunity to live today, this November 1st, this All Saints Day.

Thank you to all who came before me, those who live on in me now.

I remember you with gratitude.


My grandmother, uncle, and cousin


A great great-grandfather


A great great-grandmother


Another great great-grandfather

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