This 2016 year has proven to be quite the adventure for myself. Not only within the artistic realm but also of course within personal and professional life.
The wrapping up of last years summer games – Pan Am & Para Pan Am games required more of an traditional performance art than concrete art reflections. The Fall time I moved into the field of Archaeology for a brief contract work. This lessened my artistic reflections and reach to a broader horizon of historical significance to myself, identity, and as a whole First Nations peoples within Southern Ontario.
2015 was crawling to the last stretch and so was I. I was ready for it, to just be over.
In that December I was elected into leadership as a Band Councillor. Amongst the other councilors newly elected I did not realize this would fulfill meaning back into my drained unmotivated soul that left me crippled in the fall of 2015.
Come January I made a new me, a new outlook, a new responsibility, I now had a community and nation to be responsible for and encourage. This is what I have been working towards all my years of being alive. To know my place of being apart of a bigger unit. The unity of native peoples, working through the grass roots initiates and creating the ways of change for the other societal masses to partake within. The ancestral rejuvenation of life lessons, prophecies, teachings, and nationhood. The ways in which we would govern ourselves as native peoples, to merge ever continuously into the forms of adaptation and modern innovation with ties to tradition.
Take my role as a helper – a Councillor – a Oshkaabewis.
I always asked myself growing up – What is here for you on the reserve?( Mississauagas of the New Credit?)
- Where do you see yourself going?
- What are you here for?
- What did they teach you?
- What are you going to teach them?
- How active will you be in understanding others around you.
- If it is not there then take the steps to make it happen.
So in doing so I am embarking on the role of the elected leadership and gaining more knowledge everyday. I find the stress everyday of politics but also I find the joys of community and connection to people the real reward. If in some way my help and role brings incremental shifts and positive change then I am content.
Am I doing enough? – Which is why I aim to be in every discussion so that my mind can hear/ digest / understand and then share the information with the people or community. The transference of knowledge for the betterment of the people goes beyond just the community, but to the overall clarity that we are people. Cohabitating and all trying to give support or validations to our rights. We are captured within systems that do bring limitations of growth, but that is the beauty of investing into your self and to the people/family/community/nation around you. The lateral kindness and devotion of helping instead of the lateral violence or compartmentalization. See a need, fill a need.
The power of knowing what you and other like minded people can accomplish in a healthy or positive way.