There is a story of a circumstance that has surfaced for me over and over. I must not have fully realized this lesson when it is reoccurring. I was supposed to be camping this weekend. Maybe I should have been in those western mountains instead of being here. Sadly I can see why now. I am not safe from technology when I’m at home. Only when I go beyond the towers do I feel safe. But it is here with technology that I am most comfortable.
It made me think my life is a constant paradox. The thing about being “not full” or “only half” is also a paradox. Which way is right, which way is wrong. Who do you listen to, who do you trust. There are days when I feel I can not even trust myself. But I push on.
I have this habit of pushing. Pushing forward, pushing away, pushing.
It originated from a good place tho. I was at a Brighter Futures conference (or similar national youth conference) in the early 90’s. Evan Adams was just beginning his career change to Doctor. He was speaking at this specific conference. He was an official role model to the program. He was speaking as our peer, a young urban native person still very connected to his cultural roots. He had mentioned his mother many times. She was very important to his motivation. She pushed him to be his best and it worked.
I took that lesson to heart. I decided right then and there, I had to think like Evans mom, Make sure to always have cultural connection
and Push them to be their best.
I got my cultural connection on the stage. My passion has only grown. It has almost exploded. I guess I go overboard, like I’ve been told I do. I pushed. I tried to be every example good and bad. I suffered, sacrificed, I found success after success but equally have failed. I push myself the hardest. I spread myself too thin, get to deeply involved.
Regardless I am thankful for Evan Adams’ mom as being one of many strong indigenous women in this world to influence my thinking. She like all the women directly or indirectly in my life, helped me somehow guide my son to reach the highest he can, in a time while he can with nothing to sacrifice. Maybe this style of teaching is meant for men? Maybe it isn’t meant for women, what do I know of teaching right or wrong tho. All I knew is that it worked for Evan Adams
I haven’t always been right. My family can attest to the times I’ve been wrong. But I keep pushing. I’ve slowed down on my self sacrifice, but I still get to help guide our youth through Arts and Culture. I still have fuel for my passions, they’ve grown and changed as I’ve grown and changed. The only one consistent? My mom and my dad. I thank them for their sacrifices, the ones I was privileged not to witness and the ones I was witness to. Finding balance is a consistent work in progress. There are good days and there are bad days. I am thankful to have the digital words of my granny – Indian sqilxw Artist Mary Abel. Through her continual guidance and sacred stories of our medicine people, maybe this generation we can all embody the connections that will balance our imbalances