Ancestors and Ordinary Lives

The more information I find on my ancestors, the more I realize that they lived the same ordinary lives as I do today.

No, they did not have cell phones, 3-D copying, a world-wide internet, or television which lets us see events in Russia or Britain or Thailand as it is happening. But do those things change our everyday life in our homes or communities.

I remember my great grandmother who always had delicious fresh baked cookies in a jar. She had a garden and chickens she cared for. After my great grandfather died,  her ordinary life continued.

Robert  Kitchell, my eighth great grandfather, was born in 1601 in Rolvenden, Kent, England. There he grew up and owned property. He married Margaret Scheaffe on July 21, 1632. A few years later he sold his land and goods. The Kitchell and Scheaffe families left England together on the ship “Arabella” (probably because they were Puritans who were not welcome in England). In New England they anchored in New Haven Colony. He was the first signer of the Guilford Compact, saying that the Puritans would remain together, while they still on board the ship.

Robert negotiated to purchase land with Squaw Sachem, Shaumpishuh, and settled in Guilford formerly Menuncatuck.

He served as an attorney for Mr. Scheaffe when a Mr. Bishop brought damages against Mr. Shaeffe due to his hogs damaging Mr. Bishop’s corn.

In 1666, Mr. Kitchell was elected to be commissioner at Guilford.

Robert’s and Margaret’s son, Samuel married Grace Pierson, Daughter of Rev. Abraham Pierson. The couple moved to Newark, New Jersey. Robert and Margaret decided to go with them. In Newark he purchased land from the Indians. In the history of Newark, Robert was called “the benefactor of Newark.” The family grew to be very influential in New Jersey.

So Robert and Margaret lived ordinary lives doing those things they thought best for their families.

I honor all those who have made me who I am in my ordinary life. I thank all those people who came before me and paved the way for my life.

Is that very different from wanting to pave the way for our children, when we become the ancestors.

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MEN ARE PARTNERS IN PREGNANCY

I am past the age when I need to worry about pregnancy. I am not for ending a pregnancy on a whim, but neither should a man have control over any part of my body.

It seems to me that men are the biggest criers over Roe vs. Wade. Do they carry the baby?  Do they pay for the care of an unwanted child?

Do men not know how women get pregnant? Think about it. There are two facilitators for each and every pregnancy. Why are only women required to be punished?

Would men scream “unfair” if women demand that any man causing an unwanted pregnancy spend nine months in jail for their pleasure.

How about requiring a vasectomy? That doesn’t seem quite right though.

Perhaps the man should have to wear one of those fake pregnancy outfits for nine months.

I know there are many women who also decry Roe vs. Wade. I believe the biggest majority of women who get pregnant have a child without trauma.

Not all women are as fortunate. I went through three nine-month pregnancies. From them and a miscarriage, I had one live baby. The second stillbirth nearly over whelmed me mentally and emotionally. I survived because I had an exceedingly understanding husband. I do not believe I could have survived another pregnancy. What would I have done? I don’t know.  Fortunately, I didn’t have to make a decision.

Still when I hear the call to overturn Roe vs. Wade, I go back to asking where is the man in all this. For men, it is easy to say “every life is of value.” This includes the woman’s life, the one who must bear and care for that life.