The specifics don't matter on St. Patrick's Day, but I am Irish. I remember sitting in Elementary School and being so proud when we would reach the units about Irish History. I am not sure what it is exactly that makes me feel so connected to my family's past but it's the red-headed side of me that I feel the strongest connection to.
Apparently my sister would not agree. She and I are just 16 month apart, and while in many ways we are the same person, in many other ways we are very different. Every year my mother would make Corned Beef for dinner, and while we often had this traditional Irish-American meal, on St. Patrick's Day she made it extra special with the addition of some food coloring for the holiday. About 8 years ago my sister ( who at this time was about 14) declared that she just didn't get what all of the fuss was about, " Why are we eating this? What do we care? We aren't even Irish?". Apparently my sister wasn't paying attention during every single family gathering we had ever had in which we were the only members of the family not sporting curly red hair, or at every wedding when our names were the only one's not listed under 'Moran'. She must have slept through the stories of our great-grandparents the 'Eagan's' and their flight from Ireland to England during the Famine. Somehow the heritage of our family that had struck such a chord with me, seemed to slip right past my sisters head. We all looked at her for a second waiting for her to declare that the whole thing was a practical joke ( it wasn't), we than proceeded to laugh together. Years later we still hold this story close as an inside joke, and as proof as my sister's ability to ignore important facts. (We don't have to mention that my niece, her daughter's name is McKenna. She claims she didn't realize it was so Irish, but trust me Brittany, it doesn't get more Irish than putting a 'Mc' in front of a name.) My grandmother likes to tell stories of her Irish parents, and one day I will tell stories to my children of their Irish great grandparents, and their Aunt who didn't even know it.