I was reminded again of this the other day when I was writing a story about my maternal grandfather. After WWII he and his wife were separated for about FOUR long years (that finally sunk in!). They lost their farm to the war effort and my grandmother needed to stay behind in PEI to look after her aging parents and invalid mother. Meanwhile, her husband and almost all her children left in groups for the west coast (4 time zones away). The stress of this time took its toll on the whole family, and my grandmother developed a heart condition. A concerned doctor counseled that, for her health's sake, she leave her parents and go join her family in BC. So she did. But can you imagine how torn she must have been, knowing that she'd never see her parents again?
I have a family photo taken at Christmas time in 1950 after Granny left PEI and traveled across Canada to reunite with her husband in Duncan BC (see this photo in my previous post about Harry Charles ANDREW). I can really appreciate the joy behind their huge smiles now!
Then today I saw a posting that shared the following YouTube link. This song really solidified this whole concept for me. It deals with a family divided due to emigration, missing each other and writing letters trying to stay in touch. I think you will be very touched by these poignant lyrics performed by a very gifted Irish singer. You don't have to be Irish - it's universal. The music really adds to the story's impact. Expect a lump in your throat at the very least ...
Kilkelly Ireland Song (1995)