top of page

I'm Auntie Halina, and I love it

'Ciocia Halinku.' Auntie Halina. At the age of 77 I have become the auntie to the cousins I never knew I had. And I love it.

I'm just waking up to my third full day in Poland, and I'm about to spend time with more relatives I've discovered in the course of learning more about the father who disappeared from my life when I was four.

My heart is bursting with joy at being embraced so enthusiastically by people I have come to know since I first made contact with the Zebrowski family in October last year.

Yesterday I was blessed to spend much of the day with cousin Krzysztof and his partner Siarhei (pictured above with me and their dog Abrikos). Kris told me that, growing up, he had heard stories of my father Stanislaw: how Stanislaw had left school early, as was the custom in rural Poland in those days before WW2; how he had joined the army, and been captured by the Germans in one of the first big battles on Polish soil; and how the family remembered that Stanislaw had emigrated to Canada with a woman he met in a camp in Germany after the war. 

"Stanislaw has a daughter, Halina," the story went. But no-one knew what happened to me after my mother abruptly left Stanislaw in Northern Ontario in 1952.

Now, after 70 years, we are writing another chapter of the story. 

Now, after 70 years, I am discovering what it is like to be part of a family. It’s a new experience for me, and  I love it.

128 views4 comments

Recent Posts

See All


Halina, your happiness is palpable, so very happy for you.


Thank you so much Patsy.


Very happy for you!


Thank you RD. It quite a journey.

bottom of page