Daphne was born in Burgeo, a small coastal fishing community in Newfoundland, Canada. At Burgeo’s Cottage Hospital, the two nurses on staff were Joan Byrne and a Scottish lady Gladys Scott ‘Scottie’ who were the first to welcome her into the world; witnessing her first breath.
Daphne joined the first generation of Newfoundlanders born Canadian. She attended kindergarten at Bishop Spencer College (Church of England), a school for girls and was a student of the amalgamated school system. She received her High School (Grade XI) Diploma from Prince of Wales Collegiate and completed a Certificate in Business Administration and a Degree in Vocational Education at Memorial University while working full time with the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador.
The middle of five girls, Daphne was the third child born in the fourth year of her parent’s marriage. Born less than a year apart from her older sister, she was born an Irish twin. Both parents were first born children, natural leaders. Her father was a teacher and Anglican Minister which meant many roles and responsibilities were assigned to both her parents. Daphne was about to marry Gary MacNeil, one of sixteen children born to his parents when The Birth Order Book: Why You Are the Way You Are by Dr. Kevin Leman was gifted her, out of the blue, by Reverend Bobby Wilson Fillier, a United Church Minister. Her mother introduced them one day Daphne dropped by the Queen Elizabeth II library to conduct research. There was an instant, deep connection made that day. The book was read in no time.
Career planning was nonexistent. Daphne knew her parents expected their children to graduate from high school, continue with their education or get jobs; hanging around doing nothing was not an option. Being out in nature, participating in Brownies and Girl Guides, reading, writing poetry, sketching, painting, taking pictures, observing human behavior and being a student of life were her passions. Daphne had a natural tendency to teach, whether it meant helping her older sister with math, teaching her younger sisters how to spell or teaching colleagues about the province’s annual budgetary process.
Daphne’s fear of public speaking and her lack of confidence got in the way of her going to University straight out of high school. At fifteen years of age she was accepted into the General Hospital’s School of Nursing. In early days, she can recall feeling a great sense of inner turmoil while thinking, “How in God’s name did I end up here? This is not for me!” To her sister Christine, nursing was obviously not a good fit career wise for Daphne who remains grateful to her sister for helping her break the news to her parents that she needed to quit!
Later in life, Daphne was sent to Toronto to complete the Myer’s Briggs Type Indicator where she obtained certification. It was here where she was encouraged to let go of the limiting label ‘too soft’ and to happily and joyfully join a unique group of enthusiasts, optimists, nurturers and artists known as rational feelers; William Shakespeare and Oscar Wilde ring a bell? Her most powerful discovery occurred on day five of the workshop when it became crystal clear that she possessed a strong preference towards introversion.
Daphne was encouraged to embrace the gifts of being an introvert and not to focus on perceived weaknesses. Daphne did let go of the limiting labels of youth; shy, insecure, too quiet, secretive, stuck up, etc. Thankfully these days there is an abundance of inspiring and uplifting blogposts such as 23 Amazingly Successful Introverts Throughout History by Inc.com
and Susan Cain’s popular TedTalk, The Power of Introverts and her book Quiet that focus on the gifts of her personality preferences.
Since 2013, Daphne believes it was divine guidance that helped her break free from the cocoon that took her over 30 years to spin. She was conditioned to believe that one simply did not walk away from a good paying government job. Daphne knew deep down she was not loving her life, shining her light or living her dreams. Writing, teaching, mentoring and photography were her unfulfilled passions.
One spark of intuitive insight was revealed a few years back, “The Jig is Up. Your Guru is You” and it became a personal mantra which triggered her many creative insights to flow freely.