Throughout my training with Spirit - and as I have been passed from the care of one Guide to another,
I have been struck by the “continuence” and “seemless flow” of each hand over.
Each new Guide, helper and loved one who has come to assist me - has shown – by their conversation with me –
that they have been witness to or have knowledge of - all other conversations that I have previously had.
In fact when I was a teenager, I would hear snippets of forthcoming conversations in my head.
Some would say that I could then pre-empt that particular conversation – but many of the conversations would be with complete strangers,
not always started by me – and could take place, weeks or months later.
It wasn’t until I had had these conversations, that I would remember that I had “heard” it before.
I learnt very early on in my life that Spirit was ever present, ever vigil, and had an overview of my “future”.
It’s wonderful and sometimes a little “spooky” - to think that every conversation – every emotion – and every visual stimulus that I myself have – is witnessed, experienced and noted, by a Spirit close to me.
As is the case for you.
So I know that I have no “hiding place” from the Spirit World. When introduced to a new Guide, helper or visitor from the Spirit World – it is a futile gesture on my part – to pretend that I am always polite – am never stroppy and never ever sulk!
Which brings me to the subject that I wanted to tell you about.
I was born - “bossy”.
There’s no two ways about it – I have always been a “bossy” madam. That’s not to say that I am downright stubborn – but “bossy” could be my middle name.
It is interesting to note that I have had some VERY “bossy” Guides and Door keepers who have demanded and received my utmost respect and love. Intermingled with their “bossiness” has been the gift of humour – of which I like to think I also possess!
By the time I was born, two of my grandparents and one of my mums brothers had already died. My other grandfather (my dad’s dad) died when I was 13 months old.
(I have a memory of him sitting, smiling, in a chair as I was standing laughing up at him, whilst clutching onto his left leg.)
I also have the teddy bear that he bought for my first Christmas in1953, when I was 3 weeks old.
Did he know then – that that teddy would begin my love affair with teddy bears?
From being a baby in my pram - I know that I played with and was watched over by – two grandfathers and an uncle in Spirit.
I grew up knowing all three of them. But as the years have gone on – and with the passing of both my parents I realized that although I know their vibrations, their personality – I knew very little about their lives.
I decided that one day, I would do some research into my family tree.
January 2009 seemed a good time to start my research - and what an absolute pleasure it has been.
I have, so far, gone back to the very early 1800s.
I have located 4 grandparents – 8 great grandparents – 16 great grandparents – and 4 great great grandparents. Not to mention all their children.
My main aim when embarking on this research was to know my ancestors names and to find out about their lives – where they lived – and died.
I know that we all inherit genes, personality traits and physical resemblences of our ancestors – but one of the questions that I had was, “Did my life, loves and hates, reflect theirs?”
And if the answer to that question was, “Yes”.
“Am I really me – or a mere extention of them, their lives, and that of their ancestors?”
And if I found that the answer to that question was, “Yes”.
“Am I correct in thinking that my ancestors, myself and our individual lives are all but tiny particles of one enormous soul group?”
Beyond that question – I cannot begin to imagine!
Let me deal with the “bossiness” firstly.
My mum was forthright and stubborn – so that might account for some of it. However – her mother (my grandmother) – who visited me from the Spirit world - is bossy.
One day she came from the spirit world to visit - just when I was cooking a meal. I had to excuse myself in order to prevent the kitchen burning down! As I left the room – she quickly followed me into the kitchen saying: “How rude – how rude you are!”
One thing I know I didn’t inherit from her – was her love of cleaning. In fact both my grandmothers loved cleaning.
When my mum’s mum would “visit” – she would walk around my living room – visibly and audibly tutting at its (in her opinion) – poor state of cleanliness. She would sometimes go round my living room “spraying” lavender furniture polish as she went.
Unfortunately she never managed to remove the dust but there was no mistaking the smell, her “calling card”!!
My research told me that that grandmother had, by the age of 10, lost both her parents, and for a few years – had been separated from her younger brother. She was taken in by her uncle and aunt who were strong Methodists – as were all my family on both sides – and I can only imagine how she would have to have drawn on her inner strength to cope with the situation. Maybe that situation had given her an “edge” to her personality?
You know how adults ask small children “What do you want to do/be when you grow up?”
Well I always wanted to work in a shoe shop.
I have always loved the smell and feel of new leather. Even today – when I buy a new pair of leather shoes – I take the time to sit with my nose in them – just sniffing!
Sorry about that!!
I’m the same with suede - although having said that - my memory has just catapulted me back into the early '70s!!
Like many other young people – I dreamt of owning my very own “Afghan coat”.
An Afghan coat – for those of you too young to remember – was a suede embroidered “very trendy” edge to edge coat.
When I had saved up enough money to buy one (mine was a penny short of £20.00) my sister drove me to Chester to buy one.
I bought it in a shop called “Chelsea Girl” – the very name adding a certain panache to my coat – I felt!
However what I hadn’t bargained for, was the smell of the thing, especially when it got wet!!
The smell never went away completely – but I loved that coat and wore it until the stitching rotted away!!
So my number one ambition was to work in a shoe shop – where I could indulge my passion of sniffing new shoes.
Secondly – I wanted to marry a farmer.
I have always loved walking in fields and being on farms, walking in my “wellies” and generally getting dirty!
Throughout my life I have had ample opportunity to indulge this particular love.
One of my best friends between the ages of 4 and11 – not only lived on a farm - but also had a pony! Heaven!!
And – double heaven – her cousin not only lived on a farm AND had a pony – BUT – in their front room they had a large tan coloured “western” style saddle, complete with coiled lasso and covered stirrups. The whole thing sat resplendently on its very own wrought iron “saddle horse”!!!
In my early 20s I combined all these loves when I got a job working full time at a livery stable. I was – to coin a phrase as happy as “a pig in muck!” That is, until the relentless hard work and low pay, combined with a new opportunity – sent me scurrying indoors to work in my mums “Baby & Childrens Wear shop”.
My research into my dads side of the family has led me to discover that many of my ancestors worked as farm labourers, blacksmiths, railway workers and a stonemason
My great grandfather and great great grandfather were railway “plate layers” (laying railway lines). The work that they did enabled my grandfather (their son and grandson) to drive his steam train along the lines between Northwich (Cheshire) and Stockport. (Have I mentioned that I love steam trains!)
Another Great great great grandfather - according to the Census - was a gardener. (Another love of mine!)
Of course – the occupations of people don’t tell us about their personality. But from my point of view – I can see that I have inherited a love of the land, horses and trains. As to the stonemason – I have, since a young child – collected “interesting” stones and have little heaps of them in and around the house.
The research into my mothers side of the family revealed that one of her grandfathers (my great great grandfather) – was a cobbler and shoe maker).
How thrilled was I to discover that!
He, sadly, died at the age of 39.
His widow (my great grandmother - who was a Quaker and was born in Cumbria – “Home” of the Quaker movement) had a brother who was also a cobbler.- and her father (my great great grandfather) is listed in one census as being a “messenger” and later a postman.
How strange then, that both my parents met whilst working at the main post office in Northwich, Cheshire, prior to the onset of WW11. A job that mum returned to in later years.
Mums other grandfather (the father to my “cleaning and polishing” grandmother) was a Butler.
Had she inherited - what I would assume to be a requisite for a Butler – neatness, order and “knowing your place”?
Was she attempting to pass those things onto me?
Mums eldest brother (Armon) – who returned in spirit to play and watch over me - had been the organist at the local Zionist Methodist Church. In fact the whole of her family sang in choirs – as did my dad.
I too sang in a church and school choir – as my sister does to this day.
The love of music has definitely been handed down from generation to generation.
That old question remains, “Is it nature or nurture?” which makes us the people that we become?
My personal feeling is that we are who we are because of a combination of four things.
Nature – Nurture - Opportunity - Action
My research led me to an ancestry - a collection of souls – whose lives consisted of hard physical work.
Agricultural labourers, domestic servants, railway workers, mill workers, a stonemason, a blacksmith, a coal merchant, a baker, a cobbler and a postman.
Occupations that were repeated down the generations.
My research led me to a collection of souls - who had a belief in a power greater than themselves.
A power they called God.
A fact born from records, showing that many of them had their children Christened.
A fact born from the writings and inscriptions they have left behind in books given as presents to each other.
Most of them practiced the Methodist religion – some fervently.
One was a Quaker, and she - even on her death bed – “spoke in tongues”
And my “step” great grandfather on my mothers side – was for some years a Captain in the Salvation Army.
A collection of souls who were born in differing parts of England and Ireland.
A collection of souls whom fate/ the Universe - brought together – if only for the briefest of times.
I haven’t proved that I’m a naturally bossy person because my grandmother seems to be.
I don’t know where my sometimes “wicked” sense of humour comes from.
I don’t know how come I was born with an opinion on everything – and the need to voice it!
I do know that I have always loved the environments within which, I now find that many of my ancestors worked, (apart from the cleaning that is!)
And I am grateful to have had opportunities that wouldn’t have been available to me – if they hadn’t done what they did.
Like my ancestors – I have a belief in a far far greater power than myself.
And thanks to my ancestors, who have helped - and continue to help me in many ways – I walk – step by step towards the day when we will all meet.
And I will have my wish of hearing ALL those collective voices and dialects in one space – at one time.
My special thanks to:
Cheshire County Council records office.
The Cumbria Directory.
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