What is my nationality? First and foremost, I am a Quebecer. And I say first and foremost because this is where I was born and spent 19 years of my life. I grew up in a French environment, and French is my first language. I didn’t know a word of English until I was 10. I did all my early studies in French right up to my university classes. My Dad’s side of the family came from the Hudson Area, Choisy to be exact. At grandmoman’s (my father’s mother) we spoke only French. French is in my blood, and I revert to that language when counting or when hurt. The French culture as been, and will always be an integral part of who I am.
But I am also a Canadian. Proud and blessed to be a Canadian. My mother’s side of the family spoke mostly English. Most of my career’s work has been in English. MY husband is English, and many of my friends are English. Our children speak multiple languages but English is their first one. I am proud to be Canadian – to want all our provinces to be together, and our country to continue to be a GREAT PLACE TO BE. My country spans from the Atlantic to the Pacific and crosses mountains, plains, cities, wilderness, villages and thousands of bodies of water. My country is an integral part of me, of my culture and my memories.
Today, I celebrate Saint Jean Baptiste Day, the National Holiday for all Quebecers. Sunday I will celebrate Canada Day. Both celebrations are equally important to me. This has nothing to do with politics – this only has to do with pride, gratitude and thankfulness.