My Irish Ancestors Story: A Needle in a Haystack part two

Happy St Patrick's Day everyone! In honor of true Irish storytelling, sit back and relax while I tell you a wee story about my adventures finding an ancestral grave...

This is the actual blog post I wrote in May 2007 from Armagh, Northern Ireland:

the past few days brought me back to my ancestors. i landed in armagh on monday night at the youth hostel. myself and one other person happened to be there and the staff member. we ended up watching tv and sitting in this living room that holds about 40 people! a little bit strange to say the least...not the height of tourist season.

i tour the city the next day-easy enough on foot.

i admired all the absolutely beautiful churches and cathedrals.

i stood in the mall area-a central green park with the museum on one side and several churches surrounding it.

i walked through st patrick's trian-an interactive centre with displays and info about the book of armagh, st patrick and the history of armagh including a giant talking Gulliver in the Gulliver's Travels section!

the city itself wraps around several hills with breathtaking views.

the tourist info centre was my home base as i went back and forth nearly 10 times in the four days i was there. i met a very nice lady, Phyllis Healy, another possible relation :) , who took me under her wing. she made phone calls, she asked around and pulled some strings. she managed to get the researcher to look up some family names for me and have the info made up in a 24hr period! i also went to the armagh co. museum and looked in the Griffith Valuations-info on landholdings. i found 4 Francis O'Hares (my great-great-great grandfather!) in the book. i compared this info with the stuff given to me by the researcher and once i visited the Catholic Church in Armagh, i narrowed it down to a small town, Camlough (Camloch). i found that this town covered the Parish of Lower Killevy, listed in the info from the researcher.

so, i hopped on the bus this morning, lugging my rolling suitcase onto the city bus-i was the only passenger-and got off in Camlough. the bus driver directed me up to the top of chapel road. i rolled my suitcase 6 blocks up the hill to the Church of St Malachy, Carrickcruppin. it sits on the top of a hill and the graveyard spills down both sides of the hill. i put my suitcase inside the foyer of the church (not a soul in sight) and wandered around the graveyard. i didn't really know what i was looking for and i'd been told several times that this was really a needle-in-a-haystack situation. two separate people insisted that i didn't have enough information to know where the ancestors were, if they stayed there, etc and i'd be lucky to find anything.

for some reason i wanted to look anyway.

i made a zig zag up and down the hills, looking at all the old headstones-some had nothing on them. i thought this is really pushing it.

it was really cloudy and grey.

i kept looking but somewhat casually. i watched some people come and go to place flowers on graves and leave.

as i was about to leave i thought i'd just go over to a little area that looked interesting. my spider senses were tingling.

i glanced over my shoulder and saw-Catherine & Mary O'Hare! My great-great grandmother and her sister...

this is no exaggeration when i tell you that at that exact moment, the sun burst through the clouds. straight out of the movies! i looked over and my jaw dropped. the sun stayed out for a minute or so as i took pictures and just sat in awed silence.

i felt really at home in that place. the church was very peaceful and comforting when i stood inside it. i imagined that that very church held my great-great-great grandparents, Francis O'Hare and Elizabeth Smyth when they married on February 23, 1841...

awesome...

Here are some pictures of the city and the gravesite/church in Camlough. Also some of the sites i visited-Eiman Macha an ancient site believed to be from the Bronze Age and some other spots around town.

Me standing on top of Eiman Macha

Me standing on top of Eiman Macha

An open letter to Singles on Valentine's Day

How do you make it through the day when the whole world is in Love EXCEPT for you?

First of all, you and I both know that not everyone is in love—there are at least two of us sitting here right now and there may be dozens more out there. Regardless of the facts, it IS what Hallmark Cards, Lindt Chocolate and De Beers Diamonds wants you to feel like. Which is why we have to stick together like that saying goes: misery loves company.

Here are my two cents on what it's like to be single on Valentine's Day: it sucks. And any Single who says they don't care is a liar.

1. My promise to you in this letter

  • I will NOT tell you that all you need to do is love yourself.
  • I will NOT tell you to look for the hidden blocks to love that keep you from meeting “The One.”
  • And I certainly WILL NOT tell you how awesome it is to be single.

2. Pick up a Valentine's Day Survival pack

  • 1 box of tissues (let's not even try to deny that this won't be needed at some point).

  • Netflix account or access to your 1990s DVD collection of Romantic Movies. For example, Pretty Woman or Sleepless in Seattle (don't go halfway on this; you want to use up all of the tissues).

  • Your favorite blanket and slippers, preferably unwashed so that you can feel especially sorry for yourself.

  • Carbs (not the complex kind, the shitty kind).

  • Chocolate (make sure you purchase these before Valentine's Day—you don't want to endure the pity stares of the well-meaning clerk at 7-Eleven when you unload a basketful of chocolate hearts, while obviously wearing your PJs under your coat).

  • Your furry friend or alternatively, someone who won't try to talk you out of crying, wailing or otherwise making a fool out of yourself. Today you have every right to make a damn fool out of yourself.

  • A large bottle of alcohol or a large bottle of sugary liquid or both.
     

    3. Suggested Itinerary to make the intolerable, tolerable

  • Call in sick with the stomach flu (as in you won't be able to stomach the Valentine's Day cheer at the office)

  • If you must go to work, arrive in black with a veil over your face and tell everyone you had a death in the family (anyone with a brain in their head will give you a wide berth).

  • Bring your children to a relative or trusted friend's house so that you can let it all hang out at home.

  • Buy takeout for dinner—preferably Chinese food as this will be the only place where the staff is used to awkward and antisocial people arriving to pick up their food wearing their PJs under their coat.

  • Watch the first movie (see above).

  • Cry.

  • Get angry and yell at the wall.

  • Cry some more.

  • Laugh.

  • Cry again because now you feel like a crazy person.

  • Watch the second movie.

  • Pass out on the couch and wake up with pillow indents and a heavy sigh of relief. It's February 15th! You made it!

Remember that no matter what you decide to do today, just love yourself. Kidding! You should've seen your face! That was a good one.

But seriously, you will want to sign up for my FREE guided meditation Align with Your True Self because there is nothing better than being connected to yourself no matter what is going on in your life: 

Truly Me: Best Community This Side of the Known Universe

I'm so excited to announce that my Truly Me Community is now in full swing!

Truly Me is a safe place to explore the age old question, “Who am I?” while having loads of fun with your fellow True-pers! 

This is the group for you if resonate with any of the following life philosophies:

  • Life is nothing without laughter. Life is nothing without coffee. Life without coffee and laughter is a sad, sad state of affairs.
  • You consider the saying, "Know thyself" to be a prerequisite to adulting.
  • You love to connect with other self-explorers--known as True-pers--in the community!
  • You're not afraid of diving down the rabbit hole head first

What are you waiting for?! Click here to join us

 

Truly Me Community Guidelines

Welcome to the Truly Me Community, True-pers!

Looking for a safe space to find out about and express “Who You Really Are” while having loads of fun with your fellow True-pers?

Hey, I'm Eleanor Healy, a Reiki Master Teacher/Registered Holistic Nutritionist and Intuitive/Empath raised by Tibetan Buddhist parents with a love for traveling, documentaries and cats.

My mission is to help truth seekers feel ok being themselves so they can become who they are truly meant to be.

We are a varied group with different views on what we refer to as Source, God, Universe, All That Is or the Creator. The common string is that we believe in a higher power and/or our Higher Self—what I call the True Self.

If you’re ready to embrace a diverse community, form friendships and give and receive support to spiritually bloom then I can’t wait to get to know you! After reading these guidelines, please introduce yourself in the group.

What is the True Self?

The True Self is your pure essence that lies beyond your personality and so called flaws. It is the part of you that is free of doubt, fear and pain. It is the part of you that has been waiting patiently for this day to come…
 

Here are some daily themes to keep you on track.

At any time you can post questions about personal development, self-exploration and self-awareness. Or you can share and express who you really are—livestream a poetry reading, paint a picture, share a recipe or just talk about something you really love—any day of the week.

Monday Acceptance--Acceptance Monday: What are you willing to accept about yourself today (no matter what)? Acceptance of ourselves, including the parts we don't like or don't seem to be "good" is the key to total self-love and confidence and brings us closer to our True Self.

Tuesday Truly Me--What makes you feel connected to yourself?

Weird Wednesday--Tell us something weird—about yourself, someone you know, something you’ve seen. Let’s weird each other out!

Thursday Ahas--Post your insights, realizations, aha moments, downloads or wisdom of the week! Spread the word.

Friday Faves Show and Tell--Share your favourite quotes, photos, memories, things that make you laugh, places…it can be on any topic!

Saturday Silliness--Tell us some random jokes, show us ways you like to be silly--you can even do a FB live video of yourself! Get creative and share the silliness!

Sunday Soothes--What can you do to calm, relax or soothe yourself today?

Posts that are encouraged

  • Inspirational quotes, images or stories about yourself
  • Any questions or comments about self-discovery, self-exploration, spirituality practices, personal development
  • Requests for support and encouragement if you're having a difficult or challenging time
  • Questions about the Truly Me community: for clarification or when in need of more details
     

Posts and responses that are not tolerated

  • Offering unsolicited counselling, therapy or coaching to other members
  • Insults, shaming or ridicule of others' posts and sharing
  • No spamming of business offers or marketing/commercial posts--you may offer further information if someone has explicitly asked for it


Invite your friends

To invite your friends to this community, send them a personal message with the link to join: https://www.facebook.com/groups/132961777188980/

Do not add people to the group without their permission.
Always ask first.

 

For further support connecting to your True Self, sign up to receive my FREE guided meditation Align with Your True Self:

!

Calling Europe Over the Holidays and Other Holiday Traditions

I love this time of year. I celebrate Christmas and as with any holiday we may be celebrating, there is nothing better than traditions. Here is what creates meaning for me:

1. Holiday baking party with friends. As a Registered Holistic Nutritionist with part Italian heritage, I obviously love food! It is no exaggeration when I say that an entire phone conversation with my mom or my nana can be about food--how we prepared it, what ingredients we used and how much we enjoyed it. Aside from cooking I also adore baking. My version of baking that is (think healthier versions, whole food ingredients and organic ingredients). For the past five years I host a party where I get together with some baking enthusiasts and we whisk stuff, blend more stuff and lick spoons for a couple of fun-filled hours. Note: not all recipes turn out, like the time we created a glass casserole dish full of fruit soup with a soggy oatmeal bottom (our unfortunate version of berry cobbler). C'est la vie.

2. Watching the Main Four. Elf with Will Farrell. A Christmas Carol with Alistair Simms (the scary black and white version that makes me bawl every time--"Forgive me, Fran, forgive me!"). A Christmas Story (you'll shoot your eye out, kid!). It's a Wonderful Life (I've probably watched this a total of ...lets see... 100 times).

3. Talking to relatives overseas. Anyone who has called overseas on the holidays is well aware how similar it is to a Saturday Night Live skit. Scene: Italian Nana with a tiny address book falling apart at the seams rifles through the pages for forty-five minutes trying to find the five hundred digit phone number to dial. Then she argues with you for another twenty-minutes over the country code versus the area code. Once you actually dial the number, it is busy and you don't get through for another hour. Then comes the minute possibility that no one in the small Italian or Croatian town is home or they have most likely gone to bed--at 8:00pm. If we do get to speak to someone this is my dilemma: I don't speak Italian well enough to hold a conversation and my relatives in Italy and Croatia don't speak English well enough to understand me, so I basically get on the phone when it's my turn and say, "Buon Natale" "Come Stai?" "Grazie" and other words like that, hoping they are in the right order and sprinkled into the conversation at the right time. My nana used to translate for me, but she's not at the point where that will happen anymore, so I'll have to think of something else now. On the bright side, I'm Facebook friends with my Italian cousin and he can say a few English phrases, so maybe he can still pass on my holiday cheer from me to them!

4. Wishing that everyone was in one place. I am well aware that I made the decision to move across the country away from the friends I grew up with and my parents, but it still sucks when the reality of the holidays kicks in. My family is very spread out across Canada and Europe. A lot of my time over the holidays is spent on the phone. My vision is to one day hold an epic party with everyone altogether in one room. This may be an impossible fantasy but one can dream!

5. Being present to the magic of the season. I feel more joy during this time of year. It doesn't have anything to do with my circumstances; it is a feeling that takes over and moves me out of any sad, frustrating or challenging times. I've had horrible and wonderful holidays and everything in between. The one constant is the feeling of magic. Tap into that feeling and rise above your life circumstances--connect with the energy of joy. Need help with that? Sign up for my newsletter below for inspiration, encouragement and tips!

I would love to hear about your family traditions. Comment below and share your top 3 faves.
 

Posted on December 7, 2016 and filed under Uncategorized, entertainment.

Three Ways to Stop Devaluing Yourself

Do you ever do things that don't feel very good but that you think you should be doing anyway--to be a good person or to do the right thing? I get it--I just described most of my teens and twenties. The problem with behaving in ways that don't feel good is that you are not valuing yourself. We get so wrapped up in being the good daughter or the perfect employee or the helpful citizen that we lose sight of our own needs and desires. That is the ultimate devaluing practice. The consequences are far reaching; we may feel depressed, unfulfilled, anxious, bitter, resentful or just plain exhausted.

Here are three ways that you may not be valuing yourself and exercises that you can do to practice self-love instead:

1. Constant Improvements. If you are like me, you enjoy the practice of self-improvement and personal development. However, we can fall into the trap where we get so determined to improve this and improve that, that we don't stop and say, "This feeling is ok" or "I'm ok the way I am. Yes, I want to grow and evolve but I am perfect the way I am right now." You are ok the way you are--no matter what flaws you feel that you have. All your feelings are ok. Come from that place and move forward. Exercise: Write down all the things you want to improve about yourself and then write down beside each one, "I love this flaw. I love myself no matter what." Repeat these out loud. When you start to feel more loving towards yourself then you can move on to expanding into the new.

2. Holding back for others. You're a loving and compassionate person. That doesn't mean that you need to stay where you are because others are in a certain stage in their life. It may be scary to change and grow when others around you aren't, but there is nothing scarier than stagnation and wasting your precious life. Ask yourself--what will happen if my loved ones stay where they are and I evolve into my greatest potential? Will they walk away? Will they be angry, jealous or resentful? Will they reject me? I have relatives that no longer talk to me because they were so uncomfortable with my spiritual and personal growth. It was damn painful. But ultimately I came to the realization that I'm living my life, not theirs. On the other hand, I've bonded more than ever with other loved ones. The bottom line is that making others comfortable is a terrible trap and you're the one who will suffer the most. Exercise: Make a declaration in your journal: "As I grow, I invite others to grow. As I shine my light, I invite others to shine their light. As I love myself, others will be inspired to also go within and love themselves. I acknowledge my free will and the free will of others to take this spiritual invitation. I love myself no matter what the choice of others may be. I trust that those who love me unconditionally will surround me. My self-love sustains me through all. And so it is."

3. Doing things for the greater good. As a beautiful and giving person, you decide that you're going to be selfless and do what's for the greater good (best for everyone). You may decide to do your spiritual duty and put aside your personal desires and needs to help others or improve a situation. This is another big trap. We are here to model and show others how to love ourselves more deeply and more authentically. That means that as we value and honor our own desires and needs, we let others know its ok for them to do the same. This creates a ripple effect happens that spreads love around the world--for the greater good. Exercise: Visualize energy coming from above and below you, running through you and exiting through your heart space and expanding out. Do this every day for two minutes. You will train yourself to give from the inside out, filling yourself up first.

Looking for more practical ways to love and honor yourself? Dive in with my self-help ebook based on my spiritual journey from self-sabotage to self-love. Practical exercises and inspiration included!

What Would Little Red Riding Hood Do? 7 Ways to Face Your Wolf and Live Happily Ever After

Comment below: How do you practice self-love?

Positive Stirrings Afoot

Today is 999--the ending of a 10 year cycle and shifting into a new higher awareness of love, compassion and a higher consciousness (more here: https://thriveonnews.com/2016/07/07/999-meaning/)

It is No Coincidence that TODAY:

**Dakota pipeline access that is set to destroy sacred native land and potentially poison their only drinking water: the U.S. Department of the Interior, Department of Justice and Army Corps of Engineers issued a joint statement that, in effect, temporarily halts all construction bordering Lake Oahe on the Missouri. And I saw another announcement that the Obama administration has intervened completely to stop construction.
Read more at http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/…/dakota-access-c…

**Professor Seralini who discovered rats that ingested Genetically Modified foods grew massive tumours--only to be part of a huge smear campaign and death threats and suppression of his results. Today it was announced that he won a massive defamation law suit in his home country of France
http://www.realfarmacy.com/seralini-defamation-lawsuit/

This happened in the last week:

**Canada: all animals are now categorized as sentient beings with feelings and biological needs (the BIG DUUUUH, but better late than never) which means that animal abuse and cruelty is much easier to convict in a court of law
http://www.peacefulcentury.net/in-canada-animals-are-now-c…/

Need I say more. If you're seeing old patterns come up don't worry! I've come across my people pleaser, can't say no, can't express my true feelings, martyr, victim aspects all just this week--phew! Thankfully they just came to say goodbye.

When we get to a certain level of our spiritual healing, we can honest to goodness wave goodbye to tons of old paradigms; all we have to do is recognize that it is a goodbye and not a reunion.
Namaste and I invite you to ride this beautiful, positive, humane and loving wave.

Discussion: What have you noticed is happening in the world around you that "proves" that this shift is actually occurring? Post below!

The Breakup

My first Spoken Word performance. Lessons learned:
1) Why did I write something that was so galdang long?!
2) Even though you wrote it, doesn't mean you can remember it.
I hope you enjoy it! Like and share with your friends if you do. If I get a good response (or let's face it, even if I don't), I'll be doing it more often. Loved it.
www.trulyme.ca

Posted on September 7, 2016 and filed under poetry.

The Evolution of Self-Love: Three Phases (original poem)

Phase one: Other/Comparison/Jealousy/

If I was you
I'd be much better off.

Your grass grows greener
(like an envious brother)

Your smile seems cooler
(like an empty mother)

Your pocket runs deeper
(like a broken teacher)

If I was you
I'd be better off.

Phase two: Angst/Self-loathing

If I wasn't me
I'd be much better off.

I'd ring true
(like the weekly preacher)

I'd jump for joy
(like the tied-down seeker)

I'd be free of a limp tongue
and a chest full of
nos

If I wasn't me
I'd be better off.

Phase three: Acceptance and self-adoration

If I were me
I'd be much better off.

I'd hug the betrayals
out of my lungs

I'd sing the praises of
life's good graces

I'd slip me on
like a new suit,
freshly pressed with hope

I am me.

I am me.

I am.

And I'm much better off.

How to Know When You're Being Manipulated by Fear (and what to do)

Have you ever been hounded by someone's fear-based opinions until you felt totally panicky and thrown off? It's scary and intense, right? In this video, I offer you some tips on how to recognize fear-based manipulation and what to do about it! Make your own opinions and decisions from a place of reason and common sense. Don't let anyone lead you down the wrong track! Take your power back--you get to choose how you feel.

Posted on July 28, 2016 and filed under emotional growth.

Your Essence Makes You Invaluable

Have you ever felt that you had nothing to offer…no gifts to share whatsoever?

During spells of frustration or despair, it’s common to feel worthless. It can seem that everyone else is far more brilliant, beautiful & worthy of consideration.

In times like these, take solace in the one thing that you can offer that no-one else can: your unique perspective.

You see, nobody looks at the world the way that you do, nor thinks in exactly the same way. Once you start to engage your innate intelligence, be it simple and from the heart or complex and of the mind, your unique creativity begins to shine, and you become a beacon of brilliance.

You may be sitting on the one solution that no-one else can imagine, or you may hold just the right words to bring comfort and understanding to a tense situation. You never know until you start to apply your mind, your perspective & your creativity to something outside of yourself.

And sometimes, you don’t even need to EXPRESS your essence. Consider the CEO who sits with her team-leaders, intently listening to their ideas until brilliance is born. By simply sitting in active contemplation, you “magically” amplify the collective consciousness.

How will YOU influence the world TODAY?

Posted on July 21, 2016 and filed under emotional growth.

Change One Thing

Sometimes it seems like nothing works the way it should. If you’re a human, you have probably hit that point where work is no fun, relationship is a struggle and you don’t even feel comfortable in your body.

At times like these, changing your life can seem overwhelming. There’s so much to do…where do you even start?

It’s quite simple, really…just change ONE thing.

Read a magazine article you would never typically even consider. Try a new type of restaurant. Take a different route to work. Any simple change of scenery can shift your perspective, and has the potential to drastically transform your life.

It’s like a ship at sea…if it changes course even one degree, 100 miles later it’s in completely new waters.

Of course, the most profound shifts are the ones you make on the inside. Annoyance can easily be turned into fascination. Frustration can be flipped to become gratitude. Even anger can be transformed if you simply turn it into a song.

You don’t have to tackle the whole enchilada, just make one simple shift.

And the best part is…it’s all experimentation. If you don’t like your new perspective, you can always go back to your old one.

What “one-degree” shift can YOU make TODAY?

Posted on July 13, 2016 and filed under emotional growth.

Happiness Comes From Love & Gratitude

Every day, people buy too much stuff, eat too much food, and waste away their hours chasing after happiness…to no avail. They may find excitement or satiation, but TRUE HAPPINESS still eludes them.

Fortunately, happiness is really inexpensive and pretty simple to find, but that doesn’t mean that it comes easily. However, if you’re bold, and truly willing to commit to a few simple steps, happiness will be yours in just a short while.

1.      Quit Complaining.

The first step to finding happiness is to stop trying to find what’s wrong with the world around you. There’s plenty to complain about, but if you focus all of your attention there, you’ll never see the good stuff.

2.      Choose To Live In Love.

Falling in love with the world (and people) around you is a sure step toward happiness…and it’s easy. Simply accept people for who they are, and choose to see the good in them. Don’t expect it…CHOOSE it…then express it.

3.      Appreciate Everything.

Start expressing your gratitude every day. If you’d like, keep a gratitude journal and write down at least 3 things you’re grateful for every morning. Before long, you’ll have more things to appreciate than you can count.

Becoming happy may mean “looking like a fool” or changing A LOT of your current habits, but I promise you…it sure beats the alternative.

What can YOU do to create more happiness in your life TODAY?

Posted on June 26, 2016 and filed under health and wellness.