Healing the Rifts Created by Separation and Migration

The Clarke family (Photo by Nathan Yardy via Feet in Two Worlds)

Migration often divides families and strains relations, as adults move, sometimes across oceans, in search of economic opportunities. The individual stories can resonate with painful memories – but also with reunions and discovery across generations.

Feet in Two Worlds producer Nathan Yardy tells the story of his wife Erica’s family. Her grandparents, Eunice and Athiel Clarke, separately left Barbados decades ago, leaving their son, Henderson, (who later became Erica’s father) behind.  For Henderson, the wounds ran deep.

Eunice never returned to Barbados. After working in a clothes factory in England for some 16 years she eventually immigrated to New York City.

After fifty years of separation it was through Henderson’s daughter Erica, who had also moved to the U.S., that the family began to rebuild its ruptured bonds.

“I feel like each time I leave my grandmother Eunice I learn something new,” said Erica. “I feel incredibly blessed to have this time with her. Through getting to know her, I’m finding I’m also getting to know more about myself.”

In his report, Yardy talks about how, every time he talks with his wife and her grandmother, he learns something new about “the strength, tenacity and forgiveness needed to survive and stay connected through the process of immigration.”

Go to Feet in Two Worlds to heard Yardy’s podcast about his wife and her family.

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