January 12, 2005
My Personal Culture
Wow! When I got this assignment, I must say, I didn’t know how I was going to sum up
this big puzzle of what I call “my life”, or where I was going to find the pieces to put it together.
I had many questions. I really didn’t know anything about my culture, my heritage, or my
background. Going from phone call to phone call, I found no information. My mother was into
who we were, and where we had come from. I was told that she had begun a family tree so that
everybody would know a piece of who they were. Following her death, nobody took over that
job. That’s when I decided it was time to get on the phone and see if anybody knew about me.
The first few calls revealed nothing. I quickly realized that none of my family knew much
about any of the puzzle pieces that helped fit us together.
In the past, I have wondered about my nationality and family origin. While doing this
project, however, I finally found someone who knew a little more than everybody in my family
had known. On my mother’s side, we have the Paltridge family, and on my father’s side, we have
the Hagerman family. The Paltridge family is composed of French, German, Welch and
English. The Hagerman side is composed Irish, Dutch, German and Polish.
I was born in Portland, Oregon. Growing up, I have always lived in Oregon. I have lived
in quite a few cities. Starting in Portland, I lived in the N. E and S.E area. Then I lived in
Milwaukie, Clackamas, Gresham and Fairview. I have moved many times throughout my life. I
can’t even count on my fingers and toes the amount of times I can remember moving.
My mother grew up in Milwaukie, Oregon, where she graduated from a local high school
and started her career as a beautician. My mother is an American lady who knew the “real”
meaning to living everyday to the fullest. She, and my dad, met at a young age. Eventually
they had Jessica and...