Ailish's memories

Discussion in 'Member's Memories - Archive' started by Ailish, Oct 10, 2004.

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  1. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Dublin Foundling Hospital


    I was looking through some old journals the other night and found a life I haven’t done much work on. I wanted to share a few things...

    Life was hard – food was scarce, and the conditions were awful. Young babies and newborns were left in a basket on the porch – there was a man there whose job it was to check and bring them in.

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  2. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Dublin Foundling Hospital continued

    Eventually I was taken in by a family as a servant, however the family decided to go to America, and I was sent back to the workhouse.

    I know very little else – except my friend Catherine and I wanted to leave and we whispered about it far into the night.

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  3. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Russian ballerina in training


    I know that in many of my pl’s there have been important “teachers” that I respected – and looked up to. I will share one of them:


    In my life in Russia, I wanted to be a ballerina. We lived not far from the school and I desperately wanted to go there. I was technically not old enough to get into the school – but my parents had money and influence at the time. They were very loving and generous with all four of us children and encouraged us to pursue our dreams. They had a studio built in our home – just for me to practice. I remember going through a rigorous examination by several people – my feet, my bone structure etc. One of the men recommended a retired prima ballerina - to come to the house to give me lessons in private in preparation for the entrance audition – which for me, was still several years away. This ballerina had injured herself quite young – and walked with a cane. She became a good friend – even though she was a very difficult and demanding person when she was teaching, she was very affectionate “after work.” I was with her for several years. During this time, she instilled a great love of dance in me, as well as discipline, focus and perfect technique. ;)


    Aili


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  4. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Alessandra's lifetime


    I thought I'd share a few more memories from my journal about Alessandra's lifetime:

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  5. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Childbirth in the garden


    I thought I would share a memory from one of my lives in France. It was the very end of the memory that had me laughing hard – I still giggle when I think of the look on my sister’s and mother’s faces. It was positively priceless. My (Aurelie’s) naïve innocence about childbirth also had me smiling. My baby in that life – certainly decided to make a grand debut. :D

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  6. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Two lifetimes in Italy

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  7. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Gypsy Life & Culture


    I’ve had two lifetimes with the Gypsies. :D The one I’m going to share a little about – is from Romania in the early 1500’s.


    What I remember – is a big, loving family “group” moving together. My mother was a street performer – a musician. She had many other skills and means of earning money for our survival. If someone didn’t have enough, the other members of the community assisted them, so there was never a question of going without.


    When we were with our people – I was safe and loved. I knew I was “different” from others, but no one from our group was ever unkind to me. It was entirely different when we moved into villages to perform. I never went along – I stayed hidden back at camp. My mother tried to hide me from others when she performed. I had malformed legs and she was aware of how cruelly our people were treated by “outsiders.” She knew they wouldn’t understand or accept her misshapen little daughter.


    For the most part, we were carefree and didn’t remain too long in one place. Most outsiders were quite hostile and “our kind” was not welcomed in most places. That seemed to matter little to our community. We knew people in passing everywhere we went - other groups that travelled together. It was a happy life – until most of our “family” members were captured – and enslaved simply for being gypsies. Eventually, even the ones who eluded capture were separated.


    I found some interesting things while researching:

    A good friend of mine in my present life – Adriana – is from Romania. I told her a little about my memories, and mentioned several words to her that I had written down. She said she did not understand most of them – but a few stood out as being distinctly Romanian.

    Aili


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  8. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Life at a Monastery during the 1300's Plague


    I was a little girl named “Elisha” and I lived with my Aunt and her family. I considered them my parents – and her two sons were brothers to me. They used to tease me mercilessly about having a “boy’s name.” It was given to me by my mother – who was my Aunt’s sister. She was a nun at the abbey and I didn’t know her very well when I was really young, but I remember being a little bit in awe of someone “so close to God.”


    It was a very happy, simple life. I was very loved. After the plague came and our parents and one brother died - my remaining brother and I ended up at the abbey, where they were housing/feeding survivors.


    It was raining – and there were many, many people there. The church had set up temporary little wooden shelters – and there was a specific order. You had to progress through several different ones – before getting to the abbey or the monastery. Men and women were separated. Boy children who had been weaned – were sent with the men. They wanted to make sure you weren’t ill. If someone in your group showed any signs of illness – you were sent back to the start. Unfortunately more people caught fevers from the lack of nutrition and freezing wet conditions.


    I remember huddling against the side of the makeshift shelter – my hair stuck to my cheeks – my clothing soaked through. My teeth were chattering. I was scared – terrified of being alone. My family was dead – my surviving brother gone to the men’s side. I didn’t – or couldn’t speak to anyone. One of the nuns came – bringing fresh bread and some sort of broth in a bucket. They were checking people – one knelt in front of me – they were saying there’s no space left and people were being moved to the next several towns. She saw the wooden cross around my neck – she knew my name – who I was.


    Here are a few memories from my journals:

    Aili


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Life at a Monastery during the 1300's Plague
     
  9. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Triggers and Shared Validations during meditation


    I recently came back from another visit to California to spend time with Deborah. As Deborah mentioned, we left our meditating until the last couple of days. We had a few opportunities earlier – and had even planned on it, but it just didn’t feel like the right moment to either of us. Neither of us wanted to do a meditation if we weren’t in the right frame of mind, nor if we weren’t both into it.


    Occasionally, Deborah and I will do a remote partnered exploration – while she is in California, and I am in Canada. We have had some interesting revelations, cross-over experiences and validations. But it just isn’t the same – as physically being in the same space as the other person. The energy is magnified – the intensity of the whole experience escalates. It seems like whenever we are together – we have all of these amazingly profound experiences. It’s a really extraordinary feeling – to meditate with someone and compare notes after and realize – you were seeing the exact same thing from a different perspective. No matter how often it happens – the profundity of the experience never fails to awe me.


    I have never meditated while physically touching another person – but Deborah’s meditation experience with Daniel, and the intensity and depth of our previous shared experiences, made me want to try something new – so I asked her to hold my hand during the meditation as she did with Daniel and see if that made any difference in the experience. Boy – did it ever. The flow of energy through my whole body – and out my toes was so powerful I was twitching. At times I was aware of the energy between Deborah and myself – it was pulsating between our palms. The intensity of inner light – was both beautiful and inspiring at the same time. I could feel my third eye area enfolding in energy – and it’s so difficult to explain, but the expansion of my heart chakra was so immense – I felt completely wide open – just this pure flow of universal energy, love and joy surrounded me.


    It was interesting to me – to note that we both went into the meditation without a focus – we never discussed it, just decided to go for it while the house was quiet. Yet we both hit an altered state immediately – and we both went directly to the monastery.


    Here are the notes from my journal:

    [/QUOTE]
     
  10. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    continued from previous post.........

    Another thing I should mention that I found really interesting - is Deborah's memory of the rabbit trap and the garden – and my previous memory of hiding a rabbit in my room – a wild one from the garden. I had not shared that memory yet – with anyone. Yet in her experience – she was telling Elisha the snare in the garden WOULD NOT harm the animals – as she knew Elisha was sensitive.


    Here's a brief excerpt:

    Aili :D


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Triggers and shared validations.
     
  11. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Artefacts - Cultural Expressions


    As humans, we create and express ourselves in many different forms – and have since the beginning of time. Culturally, there are specific items which are unique to each country and/or region. Some of those have changed considerably as their creators migrated and brought their crafts with them to new lands. Some have remained within their country of origin – an important part of the country’s customs even today.


    As a child – I had memories of being a girl named Yanna. I remembered the process of making bowls with my mother and aunt. Each bowl had very specific symbols inscribed inside. It was only recently that I learned that what I was making were called incantation bowls. The symbols were Jewish-Aramaic in origin.


    Ailish


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  12. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    I remember being sick in my life as Elisha in the Monastery during the 1300's - I was dying and the Abbess was "letting my blood" - trying to rid my body of illness. It was not a very pleasant experience.


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  13. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Scotland - memories of music and mother


    In October of last year I started piecing together a Scottish life. My name was Caitlin (pronounced Kat-leen). I was the only child of a judge named Alasdair and his wife Caitriona (pronounced Ka-tree-na).


    Recently during a meditation I asked to see my connection to violins – as I’ve always held a deep attraction to this beautiful, mystical, sorrowful instrument. My whole life I’ve felt like I should be able to just pick up and play. I finally bought one just before Christmas – and the first time I picked it up – I had perfect stance and created some lovely sounding notes. But something has been holding me back from picking it up again – despite my love for the instrument. The recent work I’ve done surrounding this lifetime has given me a greater understanding.


    What I’ve learned so far has been a beautiful discovery – a life filled with love – with music – with dancing. Both of my parents were incredible people who fostered a love of music within me – something that remains with me even now. I had an especially close bond with my mother, Caitriona.


    I admired her greatly – for the work she did for the neighbors, for the poor – and for the “coal children” that worked in the mines. She was funny and loving – and full of joy and life. Everything was an adventure with her – and there was always laughter.


    My mother had a beautiful voice – and played the violin in the evenings. Many of my memories involve sitting in front of the big stone fireplace listening to her play and sing.

    There were many friendly gatherings where music and dance were the prominent activities. Our family was very well-off, and we attended many events. It was a truly charmed life.

    My mother became ill – the smiling, sunshiny woman of my childhood became frail and wasted away – but she never lost the sparkle in her eye. Nor her love of music.

    She died not long after that – and it was within the memory that I understand now why I cannot pick up that violin…

    As far as I know – I have never touched it again in any life – until now. Thinking of that life brings me much joy – which at times is tinged with an element of sorrow – an ache in my heart and a twisting in my solar plexus. A child’s grief for her mother.


    Aili


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Scotland
     
  14. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    I’ll share a few memories of my father during my life on the American Frontier - my name was Hope.


    My father was very peaceable man - he and my mother had come from England to settle some land. I was born after they had been in America a few years and had built a small cabin and established themselves; becoming close friends with the Indians. The white men who said they were his friends were trying to get him to run the Indians from their land – but he wouldn’t. He was my hero – and even though he was gruff at times, he was very gentle with me.


    Here are a couple of snippets from my journal:

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  15. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Epilepsy in the 19th Century


    When my mom was here we did a couple of shared meditations. During one of them I saw a flash of a young girl with dark hair, laid out for a funeral. She was a beautiful child – beautifully dressed, long dark hair, pale skin. She looked about 9 or 10 – and my main emotion was relief. I was relieved she was dead. Looking at her made me sad and uncomfortable. At the time – I didn’t recognize her as being ME.


    That one incident triggered dreams – of being a child locked in a room and having my hair cut off:

    I later found validation from several sources online that hair ‘taking strength’ from a person was a common misconception in the Victorian era. ;)


    It wasn’t until I went back through my journals that I realized this child – was the same girl I had been seeing as an epileptic in previous memories.

    Individuals with epilepsy were (and still are in certain cultures) considered to be "possessed by the devil," "mentally lacking" or "insane" and they were treated with no respect - no one understood, and so it was feared. It was a stigma that caused great embarrassment for families. Often when the family could not make a decision - a board was called in. They removed epileptics from their families and put them into medical facilites ranging from specific epileptic colonies to lunatic asylums.


    Now those feelings of relief at seeing the dead girl make complete sense. As a little girl, she was taken from her family and placed in an asylum for being epileptic; death was a relief:

    That also led to another validation – in the late 1800’s, water therapy was used in asylums. I knew it was the late 1800’s, not just by the clothing styles I wore, but also by the nurse’s uniforms I had described (late 19th century England), and also by my description of what they made me drink and how it made me feel:

    After some research and help from a friend, I discovered that Bromide was used in the treatment of epileptics in the late 1800’s. Because of the adverse effect it had on people, it was stopped and is now used to control animals’ seizures.


    I went for about three weeks straight dreaming about Alissia's life - and I would wake up in the middle of her seizure to find my present body contorting into some very bizarre positions.


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Epilepsy in the 19th century
     
  16. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Noemi - Daughter of Freed Slaves


    I did a meditation last weekend with my mom. I'd really been looking forward to it -it had been a while for both of us and unfortunately she got interrupted! Usually we have interesting experiences together - cross-overs and shared memories...but we haven't had a good one together for a very long time.


    Near the end I gravitated towards my life as Noemi, the daughter of freed slaves. As Noemi, I never experienced slavery myself, but I saw the scars it left upon my mother and father - emotionally and physically. My mother never wanted me or my brother to know what it meant to be a slave; she tried to hide it from us, rarely speaking about her life before freedom. My sister Carrie knew, but she was much older than Teddy and I. She was close to our mother in a different way than us younger kids were.


    Teddy and I may have been "born free," but that freedom was still limited at the time. The town was segregated - there was a definite white/black area. I remember walking through the trees along a path to the white side where my mother worked, and how the people treated her. She didn't let it bother her - at least not in front of me. But at some point, she stopped taking me to work with her when things got a little rough. I know she worried for us all.


    I found great joy in the little things in life - and my great passion was singing. I was plenty fussed over by the little old ladies in the community that gathered around in the afternoons to chat and share their stories. My special friend was "Miss Ella," and to me she was a very wise old woman who knew a lot about music - and life!


    Here's what I wrote in my journal from last weekend:

    The next day I googled the "blood of the lamb and negro spirituals" and found reference in Questia to a song from 1764 called "Been wash'd in the blood of the Lamb." There is a similar reference in an 1800's hymnal - dunno if it's the same song, but I'm betting on an adaptation of the original. I looked on youtube and although there are similarities between the songs, the current versions lack the "soul" I remember experiencing during my meditation.


    One thing that stays with me very strongly from Noemi's memories - is the joy of song. Worshiping in church was a whole different experience; it wasn't a bunch of people sitting all proper and quiet and reciting back things, and fire and brimstone sermons. It was joy - pure joy. Being thankful - and being together in Spirit. The preaching made people rise up together in joy - not be knocked down by fear of damnation. The congregation would sing back, hands clapping, feet stomping...it was beautiful!


    I have many vivid memories of Noemi, her life and her family, recorded in journals, both old and new. Many of the validations have to do with music. Eventually I may share some more of her life here on the forum :)


    Aili


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Noemi
     
  17. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    There was no other family besides my parents, brother, sister and my sister's husband (and eventually their baby). I don't recall if my parents ever spoke of their own parents or siblings; perhaps they didn't know their origins. I don't feel that we missed out on not having grandparents or aunts and uncles, though. It was a very close, very loving community and there were always people around. They all felt like family to me - they were all I knew. :)


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Noemi
     
  18. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    HI :D

    I was named for a friend of my mother's I never met. Momma wouldn't talk about her (that I remember), except to say she was "joy in a dark place." My name was pronounced No-emmy. My family called me No-no.

    My brother and I were raised knowing we were born free. I explained that my parents didn't talk much about the past, but my mother bore the scars of many whippings on her back. She tried desperately to hide the physical scars from us - it was not something she wanted us to see. Here's a memory from my journal I know some of you have read:

    Sometimes she talked about her friends and the old ways. Not often, but when she did Teddy and I were horrified and transfixed by her words. Sometimes, we'd catch all the ladies reminsicing over cold sweet tea (a treat!) and pick up some details here and there, until someone noticed us and shooed us away. We knew we were free but still living in difficult times. From my journal:

    Teddy and I knew we were different from the rest of our family - that we had opportunities they'd only dreamed of, such as education. Getting an education was important to my parents - and they were extremely proud of us when we learned to read and write so young. My sister knew the basics, but she was married young and had her own baby to care for. She wasn't much into learning anyway; she just wanted her own space and her own family to care for.


    As far as I know - I only lived in one home. It was owned by my parents and they were so very proud of it. It was small, but cozy and well taken care of. Here's how I described it in my journal:

    My Momma worked for the white people on "their side" and I actually loved helping her. I was fascinated by all of their "fine things" - and yes, a little ashamed of our tiny home at times and wishing to have their riches. I was pretty jealous of a white girl named Amelia...she was a brat, but oh how I envied her at times. From my journal:

    What's that? If you feel like sharing. :)


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Noemi
     
  19. Deborah

    Deborah Executive Director Staff Member

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    Hi Aili,


    I came across this. Perhaps I have the spelling (pronunciation) wrong. Perhaps it was another girl. Who knows - but it did get my attention. ;)

    Thanks for sharing more! :)


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Noemi
     
  20. Ailish

    Ailish Administrator Emerita

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    Thank you for reading, and for your comments everyone! It was a happy, joyful life despite the hardships. There was so much love - it overshadowed everything else ;)


    Mom - That's very interesting about the name Naomi and my Noemi. And the fact that they both sang. Perhaps we'll have to do a meditation soon ;) For those of you who haven't read Deborah's memories of her slave lifetime, please check out the following link in our Archives: Clara's Story


    Aili


    This post and discussion is continued in the thread Noemi
     
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