Tattered Past

Tattered Past: My ongoing journey through genealogy, history, writing, self-exploration and art. ~~~ Rita Ackerman

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Baby Days and Prompts

On Sept. 12, 2012 I posted the beginning of my "Remember When" posts. I've been doing them every Tuesday since. I know some people have been with me throughout the series and I thank all of you. I love to inspire people in many ways and when I hear what I'm doing is helping I'm a happy blogger.

Recently at a workshop at the Desert Foothills Library in Cave Creek, Arizona author Patricia Brooks stressed how important it is to hand write things down. It embeds that thing firmly in your mind. That is a proven fact. I also believe that hand writing your memoirs takes you deeper into the subconscious to bring those memories to the front. I don't know if that's true scientifically. It sure works for me.

I'm going to continue with the prompts with different format. I will write a story about a memory I have, a photo or one of my ancestors. This will be the main prompt for the week. I will also give you a word to write for delving into memories. You can use this word to write from directly and to make lists of things that come to mind. Lists lead to more ideas, more prompts, more memories. It is a constant work in progress.

Not all the prompts will work for every person. We are from different cultures and generations. Do the ones you can. There are no rules except to keep writing. One reader and her mother are working on the prompts together. Isn't that wonderful?

So here we go with more memories:
Sometimes a photo doesn't have a memory. That's me sitting on my Dad's shoulder. I have no idea how old I was and I'm terrible at guessing baby ages. Any guesses out there? I thought maybe three or four months and my husband thought a year. He might be closer as it sure wasn't winter in Kansas or wherever.

I don't remember my father so seeing him with me gives me a warm feeling. From other photos I think we were visiting one of my aunts in Wisconsin. They are all gone now but I try to keep piecing things together.

Find some photos that give you a warm feeling. Why?

Word for the Week: Recess


  1. Hi Rita, I was just a kid when I knew your dad. I can tell you that he loved deeply and that he loved his children. I always sensed (as a child) that he had been deeply hurt somewhere and somehow. How or where I never knew, but children have radars. This picture brought both a sense of warmth and tears. Maybe some mixed feelings for the reasons that I have just mentioned. This is not a picture of my home growing up. It doesn't look like Aunt Ann's home in Wisconson who is still living and in her 90's. It reminds me of a place we visited him in Kansas when I was very small. I am sorry that I cannot give you more information on the location. We went to visit your mother when I was about 10 and she was living in Great Bend, Kansas, but I do not know if this is the house. Just be assured that I know that your dad loved you girls with all of his heart. When he would visit our home, he played with my brother and I as if we were his children. Our Wilburn roots loved deeply. When your father died in the car accident, I still remember the deep sense of loss that was felt by our Wilburn family members. I do not know if this helps, but also be assured that our mothers always kept your school pictures and names in front of each of us. We knew you even though we rarely saw you. Love, Linda Griffin Hoskinson

    1. Linda, I can't tell you how much your comments mean to me. I have no memories of Dad and now that Betty is gone no connections. I want to learn more and understand what happened. I think Mom always loved him but couldn't live with his problems. As she was dying I found comfort that they would be together and they would both be healed. Now Betty is with them too. I feel so alone.

  2. I'm guessing you were about 6 months here. I am your cousin (your Aunt Ann's daughter) and when I saw this picture it brought back fond memories of your dad, our Uncle Hermon. As Linda said in the above post, your dad and his family were dearly loved by your grandpa, papa and aunts and uncles back in Kansas. I remember the day we got the news about your dad's death. I was pretty young, but I remember the feelings well…such sadness and a great sense of loss. I am so happy to connect with you here on your blog. Looking forward to catching up through your writing! With love from your cousin, Deb

    1. Deb, I'm so glad this door was opened. I love hearing about my dad and the chance to get to know my cousins is awesome. Ann and LaFern both came to visit when I was first married but I haven't kept in touch. Their visits are the only memories I have.


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