Family Geneology Project
One of the primary goals in the family genealogy project is to determine who I consider being my family members. I will utilize a family tree diagram to explain how people in my family are connected based on their corresponding tree part. My family tree is more of a vine that shows how my family members are related, some through birth, marriage, and adoption among others. The first section presents the family tree that visually displays the connections of three generations with my parents as the first generation, my siblings and I in the second generation, and the children of my siblings in the third generation.
My family tree starts out with my father and mother as the first generation (see Appendix, Figure 1). The second generation is my siblings and I, and lastly are my sibling’s children. I am 22 years old and was born in 1996. I and eight of my siblings are still single, while two are married. That is, my brother, Ashil, is married to Aadila and my sister, Alima, is married to Ashar. The two got married under the UAE’s law that identifies marriage as the only legal bond between a man and a woman; it is necessary for establishing a relationship and forming a family. Their decision to unite under the law was partly guided by their religious and cultural beliefs and the need to protect their rights as well as those of their children. Moreover, live-in relationships in my country are prohibited for all citizens including residents irrespective of their religion or nationality.
My father is blessed with ten children (six sons and four daughters). Among the sons, Ashir is married Aadila, and they are blessed with two one son (Aamil) and one girl (Aamil), who is adopted. Personally, I moved to the U.S in 2017 for farther studies, but all through, I have kept close touch with my family back at home. Figure 1 (Appendix) shows my family tree with three generations. Our parents are in the first generation and my siblings and I make up the second generation. The third generation includes my sibling’s children, including Aadil, Aidah, Aaamir, and Aadila (adopted).
The Story My Father, My Siblings, and I
My father and my mother were born in 1964 and 1966 respectively. My mother was a housewife from Sharjah and my father, who was a lecturer at a local university in Abu Dhabi, was from Ras Al Khaimah. Most of my life I have lived in different cities as we occasionally moved every time my father was posted to a new university. I did not contribute to the family income until I was 17 years old after which I began working part-time in a local fast food café in Abu Dhabi. However, after reaching 19 years I moved out and settled in Abu Dhabi. Living in the city meant that I was disconnected with most of our extended family members from the village. However, I have five brothers and four sisters all of whom we have lived in Abu Dhabi before I left for studied in the U.S. Therefore, the only relatives I had contact with when I was growing up were mainly my siblings. As such, I remember very little about our grandparents since my father was an orphan and the ones from my mother died when I was very young.
During my spare time, I liked playing poker with my peers most of whom were our neighbours. Since my young age, I had a hobby for drawing but I lacked the emotional, moral, and financial support necessary to grow it into something bigger such as a business. However, I occasionally enjoyed looking at masterpieces done by artists. I remember my father asking me what I wanted when I grow up to which I replied I would want to be a family man and a successful business person in the oil business. Although I never achieved the latter, I am glad I was blessed with a family. Right now I run a chain of boutique businesses back at home in Abu Dhabi where I spend most of my time when not in college.
My mother is called Aamaal and she was born in 1972. He met my father at a local cafe where he used to work in his early 20s. Being a woman in the mid-1980s often meant that she did not attend institutions of higher learning as was the norm at that time. However, after they met, my father helped her attain a college diploma from a local university in Abu Dhabi. My father played a central role in helping her enter the world of employment as an assistant in one of the major hotels in the city, but after having their first daughter, she took a maternity leave to raise her. Soon their second born son followed and it became apparent that she had to resign from her job and become a full-time housewife.
My father used to tell us that he was primarily drawn to her by the way she related to children; the first time he met her she was with her aunt’s children at a coffee shop. He approached her and introduced himself and they become close friends. After a few weeks, they began dating and he asked her for marriage after two months. According to my farther, her most difficult aspect about marriage and dating was the lack of sufficient finances. For example, my father had at some point lost his job when they decided to move in together and they had to rely on handouts from their father for almost two years. However, my father says he loves the fact that his wife was patient with him and helped him actualize his dream of opening a boutique shop. She would occasionally bring him food and tea at the shop and even keep him company, especially when there were few customers.
I am the last born and I have 5 brothers: Kamran, Kareem, Kashif, Khaleel, and Khalid and four sisters: Aymen, Ayshah, Azadeh, and Azeeza. Kareem is our late first born and was born in 1980; he died after a long battle with leukemia. He was a very talkative person and numerous friends and family were by his side when he died. He grew up in the Adh-Dhafrah region but did not attend any formal school. I remember him as a very extroverted and ever smiling brother who was always there for me. Aymen and Kashif are the second borns and identical twins who were born shortly after Kamran in 1983.
However, Kashif died in 1992 after a long battle with lung cancer while Aymen passed on early last year from a road accident. The twins, as they were commonly referred to, always spent time together. They were home schooled after my mother convinced my father to take them through school. I will remember them for being selfless. Kareem is the fourth born who was born in 1985; he is the only sibling who relocated from the UAE to a foreign country when he was just 17 years. He is a kind-hearted person and brought everyone gifts including the computer he bought for my third born son, Aamil. Azadeh and Azeeza are the fifth and sixth born respectively, and are twins but not identical. They were born in 1987 and schooled in Abu Dhabi. Both are primary school teachers and later on opened an elementary school together, which they continue to run till today.
Khaleel was born in 1989 and is the seventh born. However, he passed on during his sixth birthday after being run over by a drunk driver. Khalid is the eighth born and was born in 1991 but died two years following an acute case of an asthma attack. Finally, Ayshah is the ninth born who was born in 1994. I have always been close to Ayshah than any other sibling at home. However, we have always been fierce competitors in everything we do.
The Story of My Favourite Siblings
Alima is our oldest sibling, and has a son and a daughter aged 4 and 2 years respectively. Although I am excited to have her, her birth was marked with a lot of complications since she has an acute asthma condition. The doctors said that she had smaller airways which made asthma especially serious for her. Three days after birth she was experiencing wheezing and trouble breathing, especially at night and early in the morning. Gladly, Alima’s asthma improved as she grew up but it can still be triggered again when exposed to allergens such as pollen, mold, irritants, and cigarette smoke.When Alima was young, she loved playing with other kids in the neighbourhood but we would not let her veer too far away from home in case she had an attack.
Alima went to primary school when she was six years old and joined high school when she was 15 years old. She was an average performer and a reserved girl. Unlike most kids, Alima did not actively participate in sports but preferred to spend time in the library. However, she was an active member of the debate club and was even elected as the club’s chairlady. Since she was a child, Alima has always exhibited a strong desire to learn and advance in her academics. As such, my farther worked hard towards ensuring she received the best education, especially after completing her high school education. She has two degrees, one in teaching and the other in child development. She is currently working towards completing her masters in child psychology. I have always been particularly close to her and I loved it when she came to the shop to spend time with me.
Aashil is my father’s second born and the name means prince. The name suits him because he is the one who took over my business empire after I relocated to the U.S. Ashil has always displayed strong leadership skills. He was the captain of the soccer team when in primary school and has always wanted to be a lead an engineer. Ashil has also always been a playful kid since birth. Ashil was born through a caesarean delivery and the mother had to be admitted in the hospital for two weeks as she recovers.
Ashil entered primary school earlier than his sisters with just five years and completed his high school when he was 17 years. He is now perusing a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and works part-time as a technical assistant at Abu Dhabi’s international airport. Ashil got married early as soon as he completed his high school education and now has two children, a son and a daughter (adopted). Ashil’s decision to adopt one child came after he read about poor families who were unable to take care of their children and was willing to place some of them for adoption.
Aamil is our third born and the names mean a doer. He was born in 1987 and just like Aahil, he is a very playful kid, spontaneous, and creative. Before he was born, my mother underwent many ultrasounds due to the new policy in the UAE requiring doctors to schedule multiple appointments for ultrasound scans. Some tests such as the glucose test for gestational diabetes are mandatory. Aamil started school when he was six years old and is now finishing his undergraduate in software development.
Aamil has always had a passion for computers and video games. As such, I saw it fit to encourage him to take a career in software development. When he was in his mid-teens, he would occasionally end up in arguments with his mother over video games, mostly over whether they are a good pass time or not. However, he is a very stubborn person which I have noticed undermines his interaction with other people, especially those who do not share similar opinions with him. As a result, I decided to help by encouraging him to embark on a journey of self-discovery.
When he was 17 years, my brother gifted him a gaming computer that had been custom built for the purpose of increasing its performance (Figure 2). The gaming computer became one of Aamil most treasured thing in the house as he was growing up forcing everyone in the family to treat it as heirlooms objects with sentimental value (Figure 2). Aamil is not yet married but he is dating a young girl who is still on campus. He has expressed his desire to marry her as soon as she completes her studies and plans to move out and look for an apartment in Dubai where he hopes to find a job in software development.
Figure 2. Shows the gaming computer that had been custom built for the purpose of increasing its performance
Aadil is Alima’s first born son and is aged 4 years. There were serious complications during his birth, forcing the doctors to perform on her a cesarean section to save both the mother and the child. However, Alima recovered quickly and was able to tend to him with the support of doctors. Aadil is now a healthy child and is very receptive to new people. I love the fact that we have connected with him and he knows that am his grandfather.
A’idah is Alima’s second-born daughter who is just two 2 years. Her name is guest, the one who’s returning. Her mother had the help of Doulas, who are popular in Abu Dhabi and play a central role in helping expectant mothers, both emotionally and physically, during their pregnancy. A’idah is still a young child and I have not had the chance to interact with her as much as I would love to. However, we have already made arrangements with Alima to visit the U.S and tag her along, which she agreed to do.
Aamir is Ashil only son and is 3 years old. He was born with a serious case of autism which significantly impairs his ability to interact and communicate with people. Nonetheless, Aamir parents are loving and everyone in the family provides the support needed to make it easier for him to live a manful life. He is just three years; as such, I am yet to have enough time to socialize and get to know him better.
Aadila is Ashil’s adopted daughter and she is just 8 month. Her name means being honest and upright. Her birth parents gave her up after realizing they could not be able to raise her due to financial constraints. She is a healthy child and very receptive to new people.
The Story of My Sibling’s Spouses
Ashar is Alima husband and he is five years older than her. He is the sole provider and is very close to his son and daughter. He is a medical doctor at a local government hospital and plays a central role in helping Alima cope with her asthma conduction. Ashar studied at a local university in Dubai and was employed as soon as he graduated. I am close to him because he once visited I visited me. As such, I love him like my own son.
Aadila is Aahil wife. She got married when she was just 19 years old but she conducts herself in a mature manner compared to her age. She loves both her children and played an essential role in pushing Aahil to adopt their daughter. We rarely meet with her but when we do she is very talkative and full of youth. I admire the way she makes my son happy and fulfilled.
Figure 1: Our Family Tree
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