On paper, it seems like I have a half-brother I didn't know about. My wife and I were sitting on the couch looking through Ancestry.com when she found that my "invisible dad" had a spouse that I never knew about. I grew up feeling like my identity had two parts, my mom's side with all its transparency and my dad's which was like a black hole where nothing was visible.
Over the past decades, I've gotten bits and pieces of information and learned more about my dad's side. Most recently, I've learned that my dad--Claude H. Thorp--had been married more than once after he left my mom and me.
There are all kinds of layers of curiosity and consequences that come from being abandoned by a parent, particularly a father. Learning about my dad and his side of the family has made me feel more attached as a person. Hard to understand and hard to explain.
What about this as a legacy item for my grandkids? I'm thinking about that. Will one or more of them want to know about their ancestry and who their ancestors were? Good chance, I'd say. The lesson from my dad's side are many, but for my grandkids. Be discerning about your relationships. I'm still trying to articulate this in my head.