Ancestral adventure: Mountain ash

I am home.

I am home and the land feels so vibrant and so close, like a warm breeze plucking at my heart strings.

I am home and I feel fragile, vulnerable and exposed.

There is a sense of a new self, a new way of being that has emerged over the last month and I am terrified of it. Continue reading

Ancestral adventure: Rathlin

We are on the ferry to Rathlin in Northern Ireland. The locals say it quickly and enunciate the ‘L’ so it sounds like rattlin’. Mum is telling me a story of my ancestors – Catherine McCaig was born on the island in 1821, she married Harry Begley and moved to Port Stuart, they had a daughter, Annie (my Grandma Bear’s grandmother) and several other children.

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Ancestral adventure: Letting go

We have moved from the flat, flint and clay lands of East Anglia to the hilly stone lands of the Peak District. It is lovely to see the difference in the buildings as they respond to what’s abundant in the land. Today we are in Castleton, there are no ancestors to hunt down and visit here (as far as I know) and it is something of a relief. No expectation, no stories, just me and the land.

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Ancestral adventure: Longing

We are at Wells-next-the-sea and I am all at sea. We left London two days ago, headed to Thaxted – birthplace of my father’s mother’s great grandfather, Thomas Suckling. Already things were improved, people greeted us on the street, chatted to us at the local cafe, it was suddenly easier to pierce our little tourist bubble.

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Ancestral pilgrimage: Beginning

I am a fifth generation Australian settler and I am in the UK, in the lands of my ancestors, on a quest of healing.

It is a quest in the sense that the outcome is unknown to me. I do not know what, if anything, I will discover while I am here.

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Spring Vision Quest (Victoria)

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“You know after any truly initiating experience that you are part of a much bigger whole. Life is not about you henceforward, but you are about life.”

― Richard Rohr

Vision quest is a powerful way to surrender to the greater whole. An opportunity to step into the wilderness, letting go of the expectations and roles that hold us in place Continue reading