Navajo

A new Branch on my Family Tree

My silence for the past few weeks has not been purposeful.  After the birth of my newest grandchild, I spent some time caring for his big sister, and then nursing a sinus infection.  I’d like to say that I am over the sinus infection, but every time I say so, it flares back up again.  And on days when it does, I am not capable of thinking straight enough to catch up on my writing. This morning was another rough one, but I’m feeling better for now.

So about that new grandkid.  He’s a cutie!  Brody was nine pounds and six ounces, and we assumed he was completely healthy; but on the morning that he was scheduled to go home, the doctor came into my daughter-in-law’s room to tell her that Brody had been moved to NICU.Brody NICU swing

Brody spent a week hooked up to tubes and monitors fighting off an unknown infection. He’s home now, and doing fine.  He’s been to the doctor twice already just to make sure.

One thing that everyone said when they saw that big boy with piles of black hair is that he looks like a little Navajo boy.  I said it too.  Because he is.

Brody’s mom is half Italian and half Navajo.  His grandmother on his mother’s side was born on the reservation in Arizona. Brody won’t know his Navajo grandmother. She died about a year ago.  His grandmother was kind of like my grandmother.  She didn’t like to talk much about her life on the reservation (my grandmother didn’t talk about being Jewish), so Brody’s mom doesn’t know much about being Navajo (like my mom didn’t know about being a Jew).

With my daughter-in-law, we have a whole new limb grafted into our nearly 100% European tree. That new limb brings some authenticity to the transplanting of our tree in North American soil. But it also brings a different way of doing genealogy.

I lived for just one year in Page, Arizona, where I taught English to students from the Navajo Reservation.  I fell in love with the Navajo people and their ways of doing things.  Because of that year, I know a little more about the Navajo way than my daughter-in-law does.  We are both looking forward to learning more about the Navajo culture as we help Brody and his big sister grow.

So . . .  Ya’at’eeh. Welcome to the world, little Brody!

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