My kid’s working on a family history project for school

“I need family artifacts,” she tells me “Special things passed through generations”

I have nothing to give her, except my 1 baby photo

“We’re Salvadoran,” I tell her. “When our family fled, we had to leave it all behind”
I often look in admiration at my husband’s Armenian family. We’re both immigrants. My family was poor from the countryside. His was educated from the city. When they left Armenia at the end of the Cold War, they came by plane and brought much of their lives with them.
My mom-in-law packed everything she could to move to the U.S.: photos, art, rugs, books, tea cups, serving bowls, jewels, blankets, engraved, itty bitty spoons. Each time I eat with one of those spoons, I consider it a privilege. I’m grateful they were able to preserve so much.
Can you imagine what it must feel like? To hold something in your hands that your great, great grandmother once held in hers? A bible? A ring? A diary? To protect that one thing & pass it along to your children? People talk about generational wealth. That's it. That's wealth.
To hold on your family history -- to not have it erased -- is the greatest wealth of all.

The funny thing is my family was so poor, they likely didn't have much to pass on. But man, what I would give for any trace of our past - an old I.D., a birth certificate, a photo album.
What about you?

Do you come from an immigrant family?

What things were you or your loved ones able to preserve or not preserve through the generations?

What do you wish you could still hold in your hands?
This much is true: My Salvadoran family may not have all the things - or much of anything - but they have stories. They have legendary tales that will make your belly ache with laughter; your knees tremble, your heart break, your mind spin & learn in all the best ways ♥️
To hold on*to 🤦🏽‍♀️🥳
My photo is actually in color. (I printed it on our B & W printer for my daughter) It was taken in 1980/1981 when the worst of El Salvador's war atrocities were happening. My fav part of the photo has always been the bits of countryside dirt lodged in the crease of my neck ♥️😂

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When you’re at your smallest, your most vulnerable self, that person will be there to protect you and help build you back up.

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