Monday, November 7, 2011

Go Back 10,000 Years

Life's paths...It's funny the convoluted routes life's circumstances take us. Unpredictability and unforeseen events can cause little (or big) diversions even in minor issues like what you are going to write about in your blog. A little and unimportant glitch today led me to some change of plans simply about the subject matter of this post. However, this very change of topic has gotten me thinking of some things much more profound.

Today is a quiet day at home as the mid-term break begins to wind down. I had thought that I'd have been blogging every other day with the school schedule relaxed but for some reason I hardly seem to have even sat down all week. Between pumpkins, colcannon and dentists, I've been rushing from pillar to post all week so it was lovely to be able to spend some time just thinking this morning.

Yesterday evening, while looking for a new profile picture for his Facebook page, I spent a very nice time with my husband looking through our summer photographs on the computer, remembering holiday moments that get you through the winter. I was also waiting for some messages from people I had asked permission from to mention them here in this blog as for today's post I had intended to feature some very individual and unusual gifts which really are very very special. You are going to want to see them, I promise. Anyway the computer was working perfectly last night.

However, the unforeseen glitch I alluded to just now presented in the form of a computer with a broken internal hard drive this morning when we went to turn it on. Of course, being Friday, there's no way it'll be repaired until some time next week...and I had been so looking forward to writing that post. I need the computer for it as there are links and so on that are just so much more cumbersome on the phone.

So I got to thinking about how every tiny thing we do can have an influence on the future. Recently I read a status on FB posted by Chris Stefanick, a very interesting guy whose page I follow. It was about the chance of YOU being ever conceived and gratefulness for life. I did a little online research and the figures I came up with would blow your mind.
If you go back only 10 generations, that is, 250 years, the chance of YOU being born at all is at most
1 in 60000000000000000000000000000000000 00000000000000000000000000 000000000000000000000000000000000000!!!

If you go back one million years the likelihood is 1 to 18 with 403,166 zeros after it!!

This is taking into account only the father's line.

All of the people, the circumstances, the decisions and actions which led to YOU, any of which had they been different or absent would have led to NOT YOU.

Imagine all the wars, childhood deaths, plagues, famines, illnesses and so on which so many had to survive in order for you or me to even exist

And so it continues..looking at your own life and maybe your own children, had maybe that song which brought you a romantic memory not come on the radio...had the day not been sunny and you had a relaxed meal in the garden...had this or that circumstance or moment been even slightly different...

So thinking of all the people who had a part in my existence I am overwhelmed with gratefulness. The children who lived through wars, the medieval folk who worked so hard and buried lots of their own children at a young age who had succumbed to illness, men and women who lived, loved, maybe were less than perfect, maybe downright scoundrels some of them, all of whom chose life at that moment that led to one then another then another and another link in the chain that I am now one link in on with my own children making up the rear.

How very, very, very lucky we are to exist.

So apologising for the poor quality of these photographs which are simply screenshots taken with my phone, here are some of the people to whom I owe so very much. Thank you, each one of you I am eternally grateful.

This Is My Father With His Little Dog:

Washing His Car:

This Little Cutie Is My Mother:

As A Beautiful Young Woman:


My Paternal Grandfather With His Uncle:

With His First Motorbike:

My Father's Mother With Her Brothers:

As A Young Mother:

My Maternal Grandparents

And Skip A Few To The Oldest Photo I Have: My 2nd Great-Grandfather born in 1828 who died in 1911 having lived through and witnessed the Great Irish Famine...

What a gift life is, there ARE no accidents.
"Each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary"
Pope Benedict XVI

In Catholic tradition, November is the month for remembering our dead and praying for them. This November I think I'll also add a prayer of gratitude.

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  1. The uncle of your paternal grandfather looks like James Dean!

  2. I think so too, Mick! As a matter of fact, my Grandfather, the little boy in the photo, looked astonishingly like Jimmy Stewart!!


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