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Bernadette I think the author was proud of his mother, and felt full-filled to learn of his true heritage and what his mother survived and sacrificed for her family.
Tobias Roeloffs While only the author himself can give a true answer, I'm sure he felt saddened by what happened to his mother. When you write, especially about someone real, you live their experiences through their eyes. There were plenty of things his mother went through that I would never want to experience, even secondhand, especially what she endured at the hands of her own father. He was also probably very upset about the hardships that his family (particularly his siblings) had to endure. That said, I bet he was proud that the thirteen of them had overcome so much and could serve as an inspiration for generations to come.