Since moving back to Oklahoma I find myself in a different position with a slightly different outlook on life and people. I have had to lay down something that was so much a part of me that at times I have felt completely and utterly lost, my photography. It's hard to have something in your life that you are so completely passionate about that everything about it heightens your senses, makes you see the world in ways that only someone behind a camera, behind a brush, behind a pen, behind a keyboard, can see. Something that is so much a part of you that it is an extension of who you are, what you relate to in life, and how you see the world.
I have found another passion, it doesn't speak to the artistic side to me, one day that will awaken again, I have to believe that, but it speaks to the side of me that honestly adores people, no matter the things that have been done or said. Life can take unexpected turns, and we either fight them, or we grieve the loss of the change and we move in a new direction.
Cue Genealogy, now since I was knee high to a grasshopper (Okie Speak), although I am not much taller than that now, I was interested in our family. When I was 10,11 my mother's parents were already in their 80s, so we weren't the go to the park kind of family. We were the kids go outside and play while the parents work and grandparents watch us. Most days though you would find me in the kitchen or at my grandfather's heels, listening to stories, asking questions, soaking in his world, our family. I find searching and hunting almost natural, ideas and thoughts come to this brain fairly easy and I have a knack for finding the unfindable(I love new words).
I happened to be in our local Genealogy center at the library when one of the Genealogist, Helen, volunteers ambled in. I inquired about books on Le Flore (my county) county Cemeteries. Those of you who follow or stumble upon this blog will see that cemeteries are one of my passions. A little talking and we began to discuss that I am working a project to photograph E.V.E.R.Y headstone, E.V.E.R.Y. cemetery in our county!!! She asked me to come and speak to the Genealogists that night at their meeting and bring a sample of what I was doing. I was/am still very flattered. So, I went back to the house, tossed some pictures, from the trusty point and shooter that is now on its last legs :( and made a video slide-show.
At 7 O'Clock I went to their meeting, I met some wonderful new people, one happened to be the mother of a very nice girl I went to school with. There was one 'elderly' man there that had random things to say, and he completely kept a smile on my face the entire evening! They were warm and welcoming, although several branches on my family tree started this community nearly 200 years ago, I was new to them yet they were so open to me and my presentation. I gave a little speech as to why I felt this so important and will see it through no matter what!
After, I was congratulated, told how wonderful my speech was, how impressed they are with what I am working on, and most importantly they invited me into their fold, into their circle! I appreciate real folks, people who want nothing in return other than to work beside you, share your passion and dreams, and help you see them through. I have been fortunate enough to recently have a few people like this in my life and it brings a little hope back that maybe, just maybe I can and will find a few more.
So, I tip my hat to my new little Genealogy family, Poteau Valley Genealogical Society, and thank you for welcoming me in!