Monday, August 29, 2011

A change is gonna come...



In the Reserve people always say they want change. Not sure what change they are talking about?

I think people want change that includes them. That is what kind of change they want.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

6 years of missing my Son.

August 25th will be six years since my son, Donovan killed himself in his Mom's place. The police said he was there for a least two days. I remember that day when the police went in. I think about and wonder what he was thinking. That is the reality of suicide. You are left with so many questions, what if's, how could I have done to change it, and why? Why did he do that? It is difficult enough and impossible to make peace with that. I will always know there could have been better options. I would change places him in a second. For him to be here and for me to be gone. That is the thing that can never be, wanting it to be a mistake, a dream and finally to wake up from it.


There has been a little talk in the news media about suicide since NHL player Rick Rypien took his own life. The stories skirt around the issue of suicide, but focus rather on depression. Depression is a serious issue and has the stigma that comes along with mental health issues. People don't want to say crazy in the head, but they are thinking it.

Anyway, I am not sure if suicide will ever be without the negative stigma. There is all the negative connotations associated with suicide: cowards way out, selfish, a Sin, against the law and so on. For me, I am not sure of what to think. I know my Son is not in Hell. Even if there was a chance that he may have been going there, David went traveled there and got him and his cousin out of there. He told me so.

So we have come another year and time has not kicked in and eased it. I am still waiting for time to heal all wounds. Still it is not as severe as it once was. I can laugh, I can enjoy time with the Grandkids. Still my time alone is when my mind takes me back to that place with my Son. A lot of the those thoughts go back to the mistakes that I made. Those are the thoughts that haunt me. It is a hell of place to be alone in time. Those are the things that keep me buried in a mound of dirt, covered in earth, seeing only the darkness of things.

I wonder what thoughts haunted that young NHL player?

Saturday, August 6, 2011

These are the days...



A happy song for you out there. I thank you for reading the blog. I am going to take a trip next week and won't blog for a couple of weeks. Going to see Montana.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Cancer is the Beast.

Weendigo (windigo) is a beast. That beast eats and eats. It is an incorporeal being. It is the essence of greed, selfishness, and evil. The Windigo comes from Ojibway (and Cree) Teachings. The Teachings of the Windigo show us the nature of greed. The nature of evil unchecked.



Ronald Wolf a writer explains the Windigo this way:
You probably won't find a more savage or terrifying creature as the Wendigo. Americans and Canadians share this legend which is very similar to a werewolf. The Wendigo (also known as Windigo, Weendigo, Windago, Windiga, Witiko, Wihtikow) is a mythical creature appearing in the mythology of the Algonquian people.

It is a malevolent cannibalistic spirit which humans could transform, or which could possess humans. Those who indulged in cannibalism were at particular risk, and the legend appears to have reinforced this practice as taboo.

Wendigo psychosis is a culture-bound disorder which involves an intense craving for human flesh and the fear that one will turn into a cannibal. This once occurred frequently among Algonquian Native cultures, though has declined with the Native American urbanization.

Recently, the Wendigo has also become a horror entity of contemporary literature and film, much like the vampire, werewolf, or zombie, although these fictional depictions often bear little resemblance to the original entity.

The Wendigo is part of the traditional belief systems of various Algonquian-speaking tribes in the northern United States and Canada, most notably the Ojibwa/Saulteaux, the Cree, and the Innu/Naskapi/Montagnais.

Though descriptions varied somewhat, common to all these cultures was the conception of Wendigos as malevolent, cannibalistic, supernatural beings (manitous) of great spiritual power.

They were strongly associated with the winter, the North, and coldness, as well as with famine and starvation. At the same time, Wendigos were embodiments of gluttony, greed, and excess; never satisfied after killing and consuming one person, they were constantly searching for new victims.

In some traditions, humans who became overpowered by greed could turn into Wendigos; the Wendigo myth thus served as a method of encouraging cooperation and moderation. Among the Ojibwa, Eastern Cree, Westmain Swampy Cree, and Innu/Naskapi/Montagnais, Wendigos were said to be giants, many times larger than human beings (a characteristic absent from the Wendigo myth in the other Algonquian cultures).

Whenever a Wendigo ate another person, it would grow larger, in proportion to the meal it had just eaten, so that it could never be full. Wendigos were therefore simultaneously constantly gorging themselves and emaciated from starvation.

All cultures in which the Wendigo myth appeared shared the belief that human beings could turn into Wendigos if they ever resorted to cannibalism or, alternately, become possessed by the demonic spirit of a Wendigo, often in a dream.

Once transformed, a person would become violent and obsessed with eating human flesh. The most frequent cause of transformation into a Wendigo was if a person had resorted to cannibalism, consuming the body of another human in order to keep from starving to death during a time of extreme hardship or famine.

Among northern Algonquian cultures, cannibalism, even to save one's own life, was viewed as a serious taboo; the proper response to famine was suicide or resignation to death. On one level, the Wendigo myth thus worked as a deterrent and a warning against resorting to cannibalism; those who did would become Wendigo monsters themselves.

Among the Assiniboine, the Cree and the Ojibwa, a satirical ceremonial dance was originally performed during times of famine to reinforce the seriousness of the Wendigo taboo.

The ceremonial dance, known as a wiindigookaanzhimowin in Ojibwe and today performed as part of the last day activities of the Sun dance, involves wearing a mask and dancing about the drum backwards. The last known Wendigo Ceremony conducted in the United States was at Lake Windigo of Star Island of Cass Lake, located within the Leech Lake Indian Reservation in northern Minnesota

That is what cancer is. "Cancer is a term used for diseases in which abnormal cells divide without control and are able to invade other tissues". We know that Cancer is a Spirit. We know it takes indiscriminately. I have no love for Cancer. I know that there are people out there, Traditional people who are working hard at fighting Cancer. Sometimes Cancer wins and takes a life, other times it loses and the people win.

Cancer is a bastard. It took a number of family members. My aunties on both sides of my family, my Mom and now it threatens my Cousin's little baby girl. She is only two. It hurts to see my cousin, his family in such pain. Trying to live normally. What ever the heck that is. We can offer words, but what else can we do. We can pray. However, it is the battle between the two that is going on. Maybe the medical community can win where the Traditional Healers cannot, or maybe the Healers can win where the Medical Community may not. I hope and pray that the baby wins. Hope is not an answer or method but sometimes it is all you have.



I will send you on your way with a story our Friend Annette told us the other day. Her grand-Auntie had a bout with Cancer. She beat it. Anyway this one day she felt a lump where her belly button is. She panicked. She got worried. She had already dealt with Cancer before and didn't want to deal with it again. She wanted to make sure it was okay. She went to the hospital. The doctor found a hard ball of dirt in her belly button. "Clean your belly button Auntie".


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Aboriginal Circle



@wabkinew "I hear a lot of people say the Native community needs heroes, well we already have our heroes, so lets take a moment to remember them."

Monday, August 1, 2011

She is at rest now.

"God wanted her back. He is in a better place now. She is not suffering anymore. He is in Heaven. Time takes away the pain. She is with your Mom now. You will see him again. I know how you feel. It is meant to be. Time heals all wounds. Don't be sad. Don't feel bad. It's time to move on. Let him go. You are holding them back. It's Gods plan. Be strong. Only the good die young. You have good memories. You will have other children. You still have your children. You have to keep doing things, keep busy. You had time to say goodbye."

Holy Heck, people are dying like crazy in Sagkeeng. Seems like every week there is a wake. Lot of grief going in the community. So it might be a good time to brush up on the old sayings when you run into someone. I can't remember a lot of them, so I cheated and went online to look at the old cliches of the well meaning sympathizers.

Yes it is true, all of those things may seem like a good thing to say to someone, Hell I've said them lots of times myself to people who have suffered a loss. (Shit can't even say it right, death.) Those people had someone they loved died. So we try and say things that might be helpful. We mean good by them, when we offer our advice or words of kindness. But it just seems so wrong, you know? You boy is dead and it was meant to be? Holy shit. Your Mom suffered through cancer and it was meant to be. She is at peace? Holy shit, she suffered a lot of pain to end up dead and she is at Peace? Seems kind of weird to think like that, so I guess the best thing is to say... nothing.

If God wanted her back, then he is a one insecure bugger. He is in a better place right now, That's okay but I want him here. She is not suffering anymore, True, but why in the heck did she have to suffer in the first place. Anyway, you know where I am going with this.

Death is a natural thing, I know, but shit it still hurts like heck when it finds you (you know your loved one dies). I know a few people right now that are really suffering because they lost their Moms. My Auntie just lost one of her boys. He was murdered in a fire along with 4 others. Some crazy drunken lady set their house on fire. I wonder if there is a saying for dealing with that.

Well never meant to end on that note, so trying to think of a story for you to send  you on your ways.

My nephew was away working, so his wife and their boy were home alone for a couple of months. Anyway, the boy wanted orange juice, but Mom said it was too expensive. Little boy told Granma and she went out and got them orange juice. The boy was given a glass of juice and he took a sip (I say zip, but my wife says it is sip) of the juice. He licks his lips and says "taste expensive". Little guy is four and doesn't know what expensive means, but it is cute.