Jsack's Mom's Blog

Welcome to my blog where I share my special needs parenting journey with my heart, truth, and love, one story at a time. ❤️

Irish in my heart

I’m fortunate as I grew up knowing and learning about my Irish heritage. I loved listening to the stories of my ancestors from my Gram and her sisters. Four of my Gram’s siblings came off the boat with their parents, for dreams of a better life. After the devastation of the Great Potato famine of 1845-1849 my Great Great Grandparents and their kin, survived and without them I wouldn’t be here today to tell this story.

Michael and Elizabeth left Scotland at the age of nineteen and traveled by ship to South Hampton, England. At the time, they had three daughters and a son in tow. With competition for jobs, financial security, and food being scarce with the population boom, they made their way to Canada and settled in British Columbia.

My Great Grandparents *image courtesy of my cousin*

My Great Grandfather Michael found work in the mines and was there for twenty-nine years. They hadn’t lived there in the community long when devastation ravaged the town with floods from 1848, to 1947, the mining disaster in May of 1908 that killed one hundred and three miners, and the Great Fire of August. 1 st of 1908 that destroyed the town.

My Great Grandma Elizabeth was pregnant with my Grandma Margaret and due to give birth that hot summer. There were ten lives lost and thousands of homes burnt to the ground. There was a lot of hardship and sadness that my ancestors had to encounter in the new land. I’m happy to report my Gram made it safely into the world as the hospital and the church were the few buildings that were left.

Time passed on with my Gram and her siblings growing up and their parents had added on to their family with four more daughters. More hardship would come to the family as the mine would be closed in order to investigate the fire of 1908. My Great Grandpa Michael had to find work elsewhere. All the daughters worked as well or helped look after the youngest children.

My Great aunts such lovely lasses. *image courtesy of my cousin*

That was the life back then, everyone had a strong work ethic and supported one another. I remember my sweet Gram Margaret telling me stories of her housekeeping days, collecting oranges at the train yard, and working as a caddy at the golf course. The sisters all went on to marry and have families of their own. They still remained close as they raised their children and visited each other when they were Grandparents.

My Gram and 3 of her 5 sisters *image courtesy of my cousin*

A tragic accident in 1917, took the life of the youngest family member Josephine and she died at the age of two, with severe burns to the chest and abdomen. Poor baby girl lighting up the world with her beauty and smile, and for her life to be snuffed out like a candle is so sad. Peter, the only son of nine children returned home from World War 1 and fell ill as well. He succumbed to cerebral meningitis at the age of twenty-six on March. 17th 1922.

He was to sing in the St. Patrick’s day concert that evening for the Knights of Columbus, and he sat up in bed and sang then died. The song that he sang was Danny Boy, a beautiful Irish melody that is dear to my heart to this day.

My Great uncle *image courtesy of my cousin*

After the youngest daughter and only son had passed just 5 years my Great Grandma Elizabeth became ill. My Grandparents were set to get married in the summer month of July and Elizabeth passed 9 days before the wedding. Instead of the church wedding that was planned they quietly got married in the priests rectory of the Holy Family Catholic Church.

My parents got married there as well and my middle sister followed suit and my husband and I proudly married there after. As a devout Irish Catholic family that attended mass every Sunday and invited the priest over for dinner after one of my Great aunts went into the sisterhood. She took the name Sister Michael and lived out her young life devoting herself in service to God.

She passed tragically in a car accident when I was a little girl and my Gram would tell me stories about her love of the family and of the church. There was always tears and hugs given when she spoke of her siblings that had passed on.

My Great aunt Elizabeth and her Father Michael *image courtesy of my cousin*

I celebrate my dearly departed loved ones memories and I carry on the namesake of my Great Grandma, my Great aunt, and my Mom. My Great Grandpa Michael lived on to see his daughters marry and meet his Grandchildren. My Mom had a special relationship with him and would speak of him with joy on her heart. He passed on well into his 80’s to be reunited with his lovely wife and daughters and son.

My Gram and my Mom *image courtesy of my cousin*

My Gram and Mom always said I had the gift of my Great uncle’s vocal talent. To this day when I sing the song of my ancestors homeland Oh Danny Boy I feel uplifted on their angel wings. St. Patrick’s day is celebrated in our family household as much as the joy of birthdays. Wishing you all Irish blessings and may the luck and love of the Irish be with you always. 💚☘️

An adapted version of this story originally appeared on The Wellness Universe titled Irish heritage.

*Special thanks to my cousin Maureen for the use of her family pictures. The late night chats of our family’s story helped me feel closer to my Irish clan.*

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#Mondaymusings-Tales of my Childhood

Monday Musings-Tales of my Childhood

I write a lot of my thoughts, feelings, and passions. I was a little girl with a big heart and an even bigger imagination. I remember stories my Gram would tell me about her family. Her parents that were born in Ireland and Scotland who survived hardships of the Potato famine of 1846 and found their new life in Canada. 
Her close knit family came over by boat to forage a new beginning with two little girls and then my Gram was born almost a month after the town they lived in burnt down! They suffered a fire, flood, loss, and still remained strong together. Music was a very special outlet for their healing as whole family. The church and hymns sung around the house, and in the parlour after dinner sustained them. It gave them faith to overcome whatever trial they had encountered. 
One song that was so special to my family is Danny Boy. My Gram’s only brother had a beautiful heart and and even more beautiful voice. He loved his church as equally as he loved the church. He had survived the First World War and came back to support his family. He was set to have the solo for Danny Boy on the night of the St. Patrick’s day. He had been sickly but he wanted to honour his commitment to his choir. 
Being he was too ill to leave his bed he wasn’t able to. With his family surrounding him he sat up and sang one last time for them. Then he lay down, closed his eyes, and went to meet God. My Gram would tell me this story and her eyes would well up with tears. The pain of losing her brother in his late twenties was something she never healed from. 
When I expressed my love of all things Irish she taught me the song. I would sing it for her, my Grandpa, and my Mom. They would sing quietly along with tears in their eyes. My Gram would hug me so tight and say I made her brother proud. Every story she told of my hard working Great Grandparents made me feel connected with them. She brought their travels and tales to live for me. 
This is a tradition that still continues onto this day as I share these stories with my own children. I tend to gravitate to playing Irish characters in my theatre experience. My kids still ask me to speak in an Irish accent and they just love it. Every time I entertain them with a song or a jig I can hear my Gram giggling. I only hope my rendition does her and our Irish clan proud as all my memories are of them. 
s time for #Mondaymusings and all you have to do is this list of things. 
Write a post sharing your thoughts with us – happy, sad, philosophical, ‘silly’ even. Make it as personal as possible.
Use the hashtag #MondayMusings and link to this post.
Add your link to the linky which you will find either here and on the post of a co-host.
Use our #MondayMusings badge to help other bloggers join in too.

Today’s Write Tribe’s co-hosts are Crazy Little Family Adventure and Vinithia Dileep please be sure to check out all the talent that link up. Thank you. ❤️

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Aware

I don’t know when the day was or how the feeling came to be, but I’ve always been aware that I was different. I wasn’t a shy child, I had an insatiable curiosity about life. I wanted to know about people, what made them tick, their likes and dislikes. Before I was born my Gram told my Mom I would be special. So on the day I made my arrival my Mom, Dad, and Gram were tossing around names for me. My Mom suggested Lisa, my Dad liked it but my Gram said no I will name her after a movie star I just seen in a magazine. So my fate was decided then and there. I always wanted to be an actress I knew enough about old Hollywood and the silver screen then any other five year old did. 

My friends at school didn’t know who any of my favourites were and thought I was weird since their minds were on Star Wars, Mork and Mindy, and Disney. I enjoyed these movies and tv shows too but there was a whole other wonderful world that awaited me in the movie pictures. My Mom encouraged my love of the classics in cinema and literature and  relished  each with joy. Not to many eight year olds could quote Shakespeare and discuss Charles Dickens and know what they were prattling on about.  I could though, and my Mom and Gram called me their old soul. It was a wonderful way to grow up, it was like I had a secret life that I could share with the adults I loved. 

I also seen auras around people, and at a young age I called them rainbows. I thought everyone could see them. I also had visitations from some people I knew and many I didn’t. I still remember the day I saw my friend crying over her dog that had died. I said it’s ok he’s not really gone, he’s sitting on your lap. My Mom got a phone call about that exchange and I had to pretend that my imagination got the best of me. Some friends just accepted that’s how I was without questions. My Mom protected me the best she could in my reality but in my dreams no one could. I seen things I never wanted to see, visions of things that scared me and some things that gave me happiness. 

When did I become aware of the fact I am empathic you may ask? I think it was when I was seven years old. I realized not everyone could see the “rainbows” around them or others. And a lot of people got uncomfortable around me when I discussed them. So I just learned to be quiet and not tell anyone I had a gift. It was something special I shared with my Mom, Gram, and her family. I still remember the stories my sweet Gram would tell me of her Mother’s visions. 

There was a time when my Gram was quite young and working as a housekeeper at a hotel. Her bosses loved her and doted on her. Then one night she went out of town for a dance. She had gone out on a group date as was the style back then, and her sister accompanied her. They had a fabulous time and were coming back into town since both of them had to work the next day. There was a car accident and down went the car over the side of the cliff. My Gram told me all she remembered seeing was a white light and floating. She woke up in a bed in the hotel she worked at being cared for by her bosses wife. 

My Gram came from a family of nine and all the children lived at home and worked to support the family. So her boss and his family decided they would look after her, and wouldn’t let my Great Grandma know what had happened to her. They had to avoid this because she had a very bad heart, and they were afraid that the shock would kill her. After several weeks while my Gram was being nursed back to health from a broken neck, my Great Grandma was tired of the excuses of not seeing her daughter. So she marched up to the hotel and demanded to see her. Luckily my Gram was on the mend but little did she know that her Mom knew something was wrong as she dreamt about the accident happening! 

I’ve always had the sight, the Irish eye is what my Gram called it. It was passed down from my ancestors to my Gram, to my Mom, and to me. I have relatives that have a strong psychic nature. It’s something I’ve passed down to my own children as well. And the older I get the stronger it becomes. The same thing happened to my Mom as she went from being clairvoyant to clairaudient and clairsensient. A transition that gradually happened as she had spent her whole life being connected to the spirit world. I’ve paid attention to this sixth sense, this inner knowing all my life. It’s much a part of me as my blonde hair and blue eyes. 

I’m aware that not everyone will understand it and fear me or my gift. It is human nature to fear the things we don’t know, or understand. The spirit of God always guides me to like minded people who share the gift or want to learn more about it. I always know when there’s good people and not so good people. I can feel vibrations in speech, energy patterns, and in conversation. I don’t hang out my shingle and set up shop for readings like some people do. I know when I’m guided to help someone as the energy vibration will lead me to them. 

I’m very grateful that God blessed me and my family with a psychic sense. My Mom always told me to never fear it, but not to abuse it either. She said a great responsibility comes from using the sense properly. And that’s what I teach my children as well. A gift from God is to be used to help, heal, and never to harm or hinder. So I keep my thoughts to myself even when I see or I’m aware of the outcome. It’s like a present that gets unwrapped when I need it. But I’m always watchful, careful, and aware of my surroundings as to who’s watching me. 

This has been my submission to Sunday confessions of http://www.morethancheeseandbeer.com. Please check out her confession, the anonymous ones on her Facebook, and all the other talent who link up. Thank you for stopping by. 😊

 

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The Journey- A limerick

This journey I will take.
Before my wee heart will break.
Into the vast unknown.
I rise to the challenge
Even though I feel alone.

This is my first attempt at writing a poem in the Irish limerick style. I hope I didn’t offend my Celtic ancestry by doing so. Day 2 of my assignment with Blogging 201-Poetry

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In order to know who we are, we must learn where we come from

I sit here in the darkness thinking of a story I feel compelled to write of my ancestors. As part of my Blogging 101 assignment we are to write a blog to our dream reader. I would direct my blog to my family to learn of our ancestors

Life in the new world.

Life in the new world.

who came off the boat for dreams of a better life. After the devastation of the Great Potatoe famine of 1845-1849 they survived and without them I wouldn’t be here today to tell this story. Michael and Elizabeth left Ireland at the age of nineteen for Scotland, then travelled by ship to South Hampton, England. They landed in New York with two daughters Annie and Roseanne in tow. Which for anyone who’s read Gangs of New York, or seen the movie it was a dangerous time to be Irish indeed! They made their way to Boston and settled in for awhile. With competition for jobs, financial security, and food being scarce with the population boom, they made their way to Canada and settled in Fernie, BC.

My Great Grandfather Michael found work in the mines and was there for twenty-nine years. They hadn’t lived there long when a devastation  ravaged the town with floods from 1848, to 1947, the mining disaster in May of 1908 that  killed one hundred and three miners,  and the Great Fire of August. 1 st of 1908 that destroyed the town. My Great Grandma Elizabeth was pregnant with my Gram Margaret and due to give birth anytime. There was ten lives lost and thousands of homes burnt to the ground. A lot of hardship and sadness that my ancestors had to encounter in the new land. My Gram made it safely into the world as the hospital and the church were the few buildings that were left.

Time passed on with my Gram and her sisters growing up and their parents had added on to their family with four more daughters Thresa, Nellie, Elizabeth, Josephine and a son Peter. More hardship would come to the family as the mine would be closed in order to investigate the fire of 1908. My Great Grandpa Michael had to find work elsewhere. All the daughters worked as well, or helped look after the youngest children. That was the life back then, everyone had a strong work ethic and supported one another. I remember my sweet Gram Margaret telling me stories of her housekeeping days, collecting oranges at the trainyard, and working as a caddy at the golf course.

A tragic accident in 1917, took the life of the youngest family member Josephine and she died at the age of two, with severe burns to the chest and abdomen in. Poor baby girl lighting up the world with her beauty and smile, and for her life to be snuffed out like a candle is so sad. Peter, the only son of eight children returned home from World War 1 in fell ill as well. He succumbed to cerebral meningitis at the age of twenty-six on March. 17 th 1922. He was to sing in the St. Patrick’s day concert that evening for the Knights of Columbus, and he sat up in bed and sang then died. The song that he sang was Danny Boy, a beautiful Irish melody that is dear to my heart to this day. My beloved Gram couldn’t talk about her only brother and baby sister without shedding many tears.

Time marched on and my Gram’s sisters were marrying and her turn came to fall in love and get married too. Her and my Grandpa were all set to wed when my Great Grandma fell ill a week before the wedding and died of endocarditis at the age of fifty-three. There was to be a big church wedding in 1929 as the last one of the family to get married, but instead it was a small ceremony in the priests quarters. How tragic for my family to lose their one and only Mom. A pain I today know all too well…

So much tragedy for one family to endure let alone survive the grief! Now I know why I’ve survived my pain and peril, it’s in my DNA. To turn grief into gratitude, and pain into power! My Mom came a year later in 1930 after the Great Depression and she was loved and cherished and would remain my Grandparents only child. She took three days to come into the world, and my poor sweet Gram nearly died in childbirth. Even those times were tough after the stock market crash, my Grandpa continuing mining and supporting his family. My Gram had her five sisters and they were very close to their Father, the only living parent she had and she looked after him into his senior years. My Grandpa went off to war in 1938 when my dear Mom was only nine years old. For the next six years my Gram raised her daughter as a single parent while looking after her Father. When my Grandpa returned home he didn’t recognize this teenage girl my Mom had become.

She was wearing makeup, curling her hair, and going to picture shows with her friends. He had to get to know his family all over again and he did. They settled into a comfortable excistence and my Gram’s youngest sister went off to live in the USA and attend the convent. She proudly became a nun and took the name of Sister Michael. She loved her vocation and took up teaching in the convent. Tragically she was in a car accident and died at the age of thirty-two. It was a death that affected the whole family, as Elizabeth was living far away and they didn’t see her very often. With raising their families and being busy with life and they hadn’t lost anyone since their Mom.

I remember my own beloved Mama telling me stories of her Aunt Elizabeth her kindness, devotion to God, and her beautiful smile that would light up a room. My Gram had her two sisters living in the same town and one out of town and her Father. He was getting older and suffering with diabetes and Coronary Thrombosis. He lived until eighty-one years old and died of acute diverticulitis in 1951. My poor Gram was so devoted to her dear Father that his death left a void in her life and heart.

My Mom went on to marry my Dad and they had six children who all married and had children of their own. I look back over all my family history and I feel very grateful. My parents lived a very long life, saw their children happy, and had beautiful Grandchildren and Great Grandchildren to spend their remaining years with. My parents only knew my oldest son so there’s a sadness in me that they didn’t get to watch him grow up on this earthly plane. And they didn’t know my youngest either. I know with each memory and picture I share I’m keeping their love alive. As I truly believe in order to for us to know our future, we must discover our past.

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