This is my paternal grandmothers passport. Bubby Nomi, as I called her was born in Kunskivola, a rural area in Poland. My grandmother was one of six surviving children. Throughout her childhood, her father traveled back and forth to America to support his family. She spoke of hard times and good times, when her father was away for long periods of time. Throughout that period of her life she was surrounded by extended family, a favorite of hers, her uncle Sorkila, who treated her as his own. All in all when she spoke of her childhood there was a sense of happiness and security. However, with war fast-approaching things quickly changed. Her father, having established himself in America, arranged for the family to move there. She often spoke of saying goodbye to her favorite uncle, and his promise that he would find her anywhere and know her by the scar on her forehead. The family dynamics shifted upon arrival in America, were they moved to Brooklyn, NY. The switch from a rural to urban life was quite the adjustment. Her mother never learnt English and led a somewhat secluded and lonely life. She was unable to assimilate, and never really got over the separation from her family. My grandmother talks of teasing in school, but did move on to live the American dream, marrying a doctor, having children, the car and the house… Clearly my grandmother was much luckier than many millions of people in that time period, however there were difficult social challenges for the family.
– Anna Rosenblatt