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Family Stories: What You Gain from Your Family’s History

My mom was recently diagnosed with cancer. At age 86, it happens. I reacted with a sense of immediacy. I wanted to know more about mom and our family history while mom’s still with us. As luck would have it, my wish came true.

As we drove through Sioux Falls, SD side streets after a day of doctor appointments, I had a few wrong turns. My mom piped up: “Look. There’s the State Theater...that’s where your dad and I had our first date.” Then we passed a hotel where mom said that’s where they spent their wedding night. That opened a floodgate of questions from me, and thoughts of, “Why didn’t I ask these things sooner?”

I wondered why parent and family history are so valuable. Turns out, according to Select Health, knowing your family history:

  1. Gives you a sense of identity.

  2. Makes you more resilient.

  3. Helps you connect with others.

  4. Makes you a better human.

  5. Helps you make good health choices.

According to Emory University research, learning more about your family’s past increases emotional well-being. Who knew? All great reasons to learn more about your family’s past.

Here’s an option: Recently I invested in FOREVER® Family Research. This service helps you uncover your ancestors, document their lives, and share their stories with you so that you can celebrate them today with friends and family and preserve them for generations with your FOREVER® Guaranteed Storage account. It’s ideal if you're interested, but lack time, skills, or inclination to dig in. So far, FOREVER® has gone back through my great grandparents and their families.

In the process, I’m finding relatives alive now that I want to contact. It opens all sorts of connections for me. Opportunities galore.

As we work on my mom’s health, it’s a joy to ask more questions and learn things from her. Things I never thought to ask before. It’s like a gift—despite the hardships of cancer.

So don’t wait to learn these gold nuggets of information from your parents (or even grandparents) if they’re still here. If they’ve passed, consider learning your ancestry with FOREVER® Family Research.

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