Does history repeat itself? A strange coincidence? Or something else?

My husband’s parents flew in from the US for the wedding and we enjoyed spending time with them this weekend!

We’ve been wondering if our branch of the family is related to other Werners and got into a discussion about my husband’s grandparents generation.

We learned for the first time that my husband’s great aunt and uncle had a child with Trisomy 21 who was institutionalized at birth, which tragically was the norm at that time.  I still couldn’t help wincing when the story was shared.

And then we learned something that kind of made us all shiver.

My father -in-law had an aunt and uncle who couldn’t have children.  Someone who was very ill asked them to raise her little son as their own when she died.  Since his mother had requested that her son be raised with her last name, he was raised in every way as their son but he wasn’t legally a Werner.

When my father-in-law shared this story, and then said the birth name of the child raised by the Werners three generations ago, my family members all looked at each other.  “What did you say his last name was?” someone asked.  “XYZ”, said my father in law, and spelled it out.

The same last name of our Rafael.  The same spelling.  A last name I heard for the first time when we were shown his file.  Not a common name at all.

And Werner isn’t a very common name either.

And so three generations ago, the Werners raised a little boy as their own, but keeping his birth name of XYZ.  And right now, the Werners are raising a little boy as their own, but keeping the same birth name of XYZ.

I can’t tell you what the significance of that is but it feels like more than just coincidence, don’t you think?


7 thoughts on “Does history repeat itself? A strange coincidence? Or something else?

  1. Wow! That is truly astonishing and feels like it “means something ” significant to me, too. What are the odds?!?

  2. tremendous hashgocha pratis!! I got chills as I was reading . It is so bashert that baby rafael was meant to be with you now. thank you for sharing.

  3. wow, what a story! There is no such thing as coincidence, only Hashem’s plan. There is a concept of gilgul in judaism and there are stories of souls coming down together in few different iterations. Maybe someone who really knows and understands these things can shed some light on what it all means.

  4. First of all, a belated congrats on your son wedding! You all look fabulous!
    Second of all: yes, self-care is important, as you mentioned in last post…
    Lastly: is it possible that somehow Rafael is a, XYZ descent either directly or “sideways” (<–what I call related via 5th, 6th, 7th cousins) ? Stranger things have happened…I have found some interesting links in my own family tree on… ie a childhood friend turning out to be my 6th cousin! And the niece of another family friend turning out to be related to me, too! It's all just seven degrees of separation, which can span across ethnic groups and religion- we are all more alike than different

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