My Journal

Courtesy of Rubberball Photos

I grew up in a traditional Italian household, with our family living one floor above my grandparents in a three-decker house. I loved the Italian traditions and customs, but because I was so young when my grandparents died, much of those traditions were lost as our family became increasingly Americanized. I gave it little thought until some years later when I first vacationed in Italy. I then realized how much my Italian heritage had lapsed. My newfound pride helped me to realize the importance of that heritage and the necessity to record it.

I started a journal wherein I wrote all I could remember of the early years. I interviewed parents and family.  One day I found my grandfather’s diary, written in Italian. It further invigorated my memory. I interspersed those memories with snippets of Italian history and culture. As my four children grew older and were more able to comprehend our heritage, I put those recorded facts together and was able to comfortably discuss my childhood along with the history and customs of Italy.

The journal became my guide. I gave holiday talks to our family. The first was on Christmas Eve at our family’s feast of La Vigilia. I referred to the journal for my story and of how our tradition continued.

The snickering turned to silence and the silence turned to questions. My dissertations are now a part of the family lore.

From those notes, I have written childhood stories. Some have been published.

I regularly contribute to the journal and refer to it often.

Explore posts in the same categories: Growing up Italian, Reflections, Stories of the 1940's and 1950's

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2 Comments on “My Journal”

  1. Prof./Cav. Philip J. DiNovo Says:

    Caro Dr. I found remarks very important and I had to let you know that many of us share your story! I am so
    happy that we were able to later in life claim our heritage. I am so happy you are passing on our treasure to your children and to many other groups.

    • Thank you, Professor. You are indeed a role model for me and for so many who wish to propagate the story of Italians in America. I look forward to my next trip to your museum.

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