My journey with the Irish language

About Neasa Níc Dhónaill

Vanessa-Bushell-at-Coolum-Beach (3)

Neasa Níc Dhónaill is a combination of my name, Vanessa Bushell, and the authentic Irish version of my mother’s maiden name, Mac Connell. I was drawn to learning Irish in 2015 after hearing Eoin Ó Conchuír’s podcasts (from Bitesize Irish Gaelic). His podcasts inspired something within me which started my journey of reconnecting with the language of my ancestors.

Since then, I have accessed a range of different Irish language resources and discovered an international online Irish speaking community. So despite living in Queensland, Australia, where I have no access to Irish speakers or courses,  I can still learn Gaeilge. My experience of learning this language and becoming a part of the community is heart warming. It fills a loss of identity I have carried with me my whole life and is reconnecting me to roots I didn’t know I have.


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