Originally posted May 10th, 2016 on Generation Viewpoint
Right now at 9:16 pm Pennsylvania time I'm thinking about two of my sons who are sound asleep at 3:16 am in Norway, the country our family has roots from. There's more.
Tonite they are sleeping in the farmhouse that their great-great grandfather lived in and their great grandfather was actually born in. It's in a small town called Lista which is steep in rich history going back to 400 A.D. and still some remnants of WWII.
Tonite my mind wanders to my great grandfather. Many years ago while he lived in this farmhouse living his regular life of going to work, fixing things around the house and starting a family who was he really and what did he think about. I'm sure when my grandfather was born it made him smile. Did he take a day off work? Did he worry about how he was going to feed this new hungry mouth? Could he even fathome on his most visionary day that years later his great-great grand children would sleep in the house he was sitting in? My word.
I went to work today, spread some mulch on my flower beds, spent a few moments with some friends and am now sitting next to my wife writing this and not once did I think about if my great-great grand children will ever step foot in this house. Question I'm left pondering is what would I do different of that was the case? If I lived thinking about what the impact my actions may have on 4 generations of family from now how would I put greater value on decisions I make and would it make a difference.
The answer is yes. My children's great-great grandfather raised a son that knew how to work. That had the courage to step on a boat and head to the United States and have his name changed from Tonnes Kongevold to Thomas Kongvold. That man would become a cook on a tugboat and be married and have children.
Tonnes would name his son Thor. Thor who would value family above all else. He would work tirelessly to save and provide a life for his wife and children that was even better than what he had growing up. He would stay in constant contact with the family back in Norway and place a high value on the family roots.
Thor would have several children including a son that would be named Freedom. What would Thor's grandfather think if he heard his Norwegian grandson named his child Freedom? I of course would have children of my own. One of them he would name Evan whom you all know as we host this podcast together. Did Evan's great-great grandfather ever think about us or what we'd be doing? I'm sure in his day to day working and providing it was not a daily thought to imagine what would be but yet here we are. A product of generations of Kongvold men providing and doing what needs to be done.
Years from now, will my great-great grandchildren wonder who I was or what I did? Will they see a part of me in the family that they do know? What can I do to leave a mark and nudge our wonderful family history in a powerful direction?
This post is a lot of ramblings. Tonite is a moving night as visions from the past and my visions for the future have collided. I hope my boys Evan and Bryce see the connection and feel the love for them that has been passed on for generations. What a wonderful night.