I am a rookie blogger. Feeling afraid to take this risk, but hearing Aslan whisper "Courage, dear heart", I move ahead. I tend to wear my heart on my sleeve and can be a deep thinker but I really don't take myself too seriously. I am so excited about life and all I am learning. I long to share with anyone who wants to join with me on this journey. Hope you visit often!
Who Am I
October 27, 1966
I was born (and mostly) raised in and around St-Eustache,Quebec. A small, yet historically significant town north of Montreal. If you click on the link, the famous church they are referring to is where I had my first communion and where we had my father's funeral. Our family burial plot is there.
My Father was French Canadian Catholic. My mother English Protestant. Let that sink
in a moment. That is a whole other story on it’s own.
Mom & Dad's Wedding. September 1951
If you ever get a chance to watch the documentary Quebec My
Country Mon Pays, please do. It is so well done! That will show you the kind of environment I
grew up in. And some of the exact area
too, much to my surprise when I watched it.
Here is a link to the trailer https://vimeo.com/182087241 It is only 2 minutes long and really worth the watch. The film itself really resonated with me. I cried more than once watching it.
The Revolution Tranquille and the FLQ crisis. I remember being 4 yrs old and hiding under
our kitchen table when the soldiers came to search our house during the October
crisis. James Cross and Pierre Laporte had
been kidnapped and then Laporte killed.
As a very little girl all of my neighbourhood friends were French
and I went to French school but we spoke English in the home. I was the youngest of 6 living siblings, the
oldest passed away at 6yrs of age before I was born. My brothers and sisters were much older and
went to English school. They were all a year or two
apart, born in the 50’s, during happier family times. I came along 7 ½ years
after the youngest one. I was the oops
child. My parent’s relationship had long
since deteriorated. They were not
sharing the same bedroom. I have no memories of going on “family outings” or of
them doing anything together. (except fight) I was either with my mother or with
my father. Never the two together even though we were still under the same roof.
It was the 60’s/ early 70’s.
Every adult, or almost adult, in my world had a cigarette (or something
else) in one hand and a drink in the other. (This was Quebec, it seemed the legal drinking age was 15.) My father was a travelling salesman
and gone all week, only home on weekends but I had a close relationship with
him. I believe my mother was overwhelmed, and
I am sure suffering from depression among other things. Although my mother kept
a very clean house, and did the best she could running a tight ship as expected
in those days, we never bonded as mother/ daughter. It was my oldest sister who stepped in and
provided the nurturing. Bathing me,
doing my hair, bedtime stories etc. Although complex, I bonded more with her. I have
always been very close with all of my brothers and sisters and to this day we
have a special bond that has been envied. I really don’t know where I would be
The day of my Christening surrounded by my siblings
I considered myself to have a happy early childhood. This was all I knew. It seemed fine and in fact consisted of many
happy memories. We lived on a
cul de sac and I was surrounded by a neighbourhood of great friends. We still keep in touch to this day. I loved music and had my own record
player. My very favourite song when I
was 4 yrs old was Hey Jude and when I started kindergarten I had a huge Pink
Floyd sticker on my lunch box. I really benefitted from having teenage siblings
in an era when some of the best music came out.
My mom and dad both loved music too.
Some of the new stuff but a lot of the old greats. There was always
music in our house and I feel so very grateful for that influence.
What a gift. I wish I still had some of
those old 78’s.
My heroes were Lassie and Hercules. I watched every day. I loved
all animals but especially dogs, horses and other farm animals. This shaped my core. Music, dogs, horses. To this day I still believe that in heaven,
along with the most amazing worship we have ever heard, there will be just as
many dogs as people, if not more and I will finally get to ride my winged
My Kindergarten photo
Then the separation happened and the moves started.
Haunted Houses and Multiple Homes
When I was 6 yrs old mom left my dad and we went to go live
with my grandfather in Laval West. Most of the older kids went to live
elsewhere. It was another one of several haunted houses I have lived in. This may sound dramatic or unbelievable to
some I know. For me, it was just part of
my normal for as far back as I can remember because there was generational
occult practices/paranormal activity on my mom’s side of the family. It was
never something that I pursued. I have not picked up that baton and never will. There are many things I don’t understand, and
will not have answers to this side of heaven but I do know there is a spiritual
realm. I couldn’t deny it if I tried and believe me some days I tried. There
are ghosts. I have lived amongst them. I
have seen angels. I have seen demons. There is good and there is evil. Although many things were traumatic over the years as far as
all that spiritual stuff goes, and I do not want that time back, I am thankful
now that it ended up helping me solidify my belief and trust in God and his love for me.
Back to the move. My
poor mother was not in a good head-space. I think it was really hard for her to
move back in with her father especially since he had never recovered from the
death of my grandmother 4 years earlier. He had been a highly respected and very
brilliant Bell Telephone Co. Pioneer, but now the
bottle had become his best friend. It was a time of sadness and darkness. My saving grace was having my
cousin nearby to play Barbies and listen to David Cassidy and other music with, and seeing my dad on the weekends and holidays. He would take me on fun outings and road trips, often allowing me to bring at least one or more of my friends to join us. It usually involved ponies and or the beach and hours discussing and planning the farm we were going to buy and all the animals we would have. When alone, I played
with my plastic barn and farm animals. My best friends. I loved taking off on my bike and exploring
all over town. I had a lot freedom for one so young. I became even more
independent and fearless.
My older siblings invited my mom to go live with them in
Woodstock, Ontario. A fresh start. Part
of the 70’s exodus from Quebec, which eventually ended up with every one of us landing
in Beautiful British Columbia. .........To be cont'd
Week One: It is a very strange feeling. I know I will be ok, and I know that I have much love and support but life will never be the same again. There is this huge, bold mark on my timeline. The before, the after. I am not the same person. It is not my first big loss and grieving process, but it is the first loss of a sibling. I am not sure how to do this. I don't want to do this. I am still tumbling from the rug being pulled out, however people all around me are (as am I) going grocery shopping, banking, driving, working, planning....It's like in the movies when the scene is paused but some objects are still going by in slow motion. Surreal. I am so very grateful for the love and support of my husband, kids and grandkids and other siblings, family and friends. I treasure the evening just spent with Tommy, my sisters and brother in law, sharing in communion and prayer, laughing and crying and singing/worshipping together as we remember Paul and hold on to our lifeline, our Hea…
It was 5 months ago today I lost my brother. That first night of our vacation we were so excited about. That night. That phone call. That spine chilling gut wrenching phone call night. He's gone. Gone? What does that mean?! Passed away. Dead.
Suddenly, unexpectedly gone.
The next morning was Canada Day and one of the main reasons why we were on vacation. Less than 24 hrs later. A full day of festivities planned with the grandkids. How could Canada Day go on? I know Paul would have wanted me to celebrate Canada Day as he was very patriotic and especially to enjoy my grandkids as he adored his own. But it should be cancelled. Couldn't we just stop a minute or at least press pause? Don't they (all of Canada) know how wrong this is?! Walking through crowds of people with my brain in a fog, I try to stay in the moment and grounded as I watch them sway to the band, cheer on the parade and joyfully play bean bag toss. The bean bags fly through the air in slow motion. At …
Wake up! Wake up!
Hear the sound
Bullets fired all around
So much pain
And loss and grief
Will there ever be relief?
Mother, Father marching on
The night is long
But we will sing your victory song
Our flag waves high
The wreaths are laid
The band will play for you this day
We give thanks
We bow our heads
For the living and the dead
To you the honour
And praises be
For Canada so strong and free
You’ve stood on guard
You’ve paid the debt
A moment of silence
Lest we forget