My name is Rachel Bursey and I was born in 1972 in Bridgetown, Barbados. I was raised in Barbados to a Jamaican born mother and Barbadian born father. The second of five children, I have an older sister who lives in Australia, a younger brother who lives in Canada, a younger sister who lives in Barbados and my youngest brother that lives in California. When I was ten, I lived for a year with my family in Jamaica.
In 1991, I came to Canada to go to university at Ryerson in Toronto. I completed my Bachelor’s degree in Business Management where I majored in Marketing and minored in Business Communication. I graduated in 1995. While at Ryerson, I met my husband, Tony, who majored in Applied Geography. We were married in 1996 in Barbados.
After the birth of our first child in 1998 in Toronto, we seriously considered moving to Barbados to raise our family. Then our second was born in 2000. By then we were almost convinced that island living was the right decision for us to raise our kids. Then on the morning of September 11, 2001, with a job opportunity in hand and my husband about to walk in to his boss’s office to hand in his resignation, we watched the towers go down on CNN with the rest of the world. Right there and then we made the decision to stay in Canada. I have never looked back even though I return to my hometown as often as we can.
In 2002, when our third was born, we left Toronto and moved to the suburbs. After 3 years in Whitby, on my 33rd birthday, we made the tough decision to return our family to Toronto. You can take the girl out of Toronto but you cannot take Toronto out of the girl. So back we went. Our fourth was born in 2010.
In 2014, after 16 years as a homemaker, I took a part time job in high rise construction in Toronto. The position lasted eight months but the memories will last a lifetime.