Be the Change. Finding a new path between Canada and Indigenous people

Be the Change. Finding a new path between Canada and Indigenous people

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Aurora Centre of Healing started this petition to Catholic Church of Canada (Tracey Blain Indigenous Rel) and

We have been seeking the meaning of home for the last four years   We have been exploring the truth of my lived experiences as a non-status mixed blood Canadian.  The truth has been painful, poignant, and liberating.

I have never felt like I belonged anywhere.

My first twenty years would be influenced by my mothers settler rooted family.  Although my grandmother had ties to the Métis community of Manitoba, I would be raised as any Canadian child had a right to, without the exhaustion of de-colonization, constant defence and establishment of my identity, or the battle for lands lost.

I was raised in the urban community of Edmonton, Alberta.  The south side to be exact.  I was raised with my sister, lead by my Mother who divorced my Dad early in our childhood.  I would deeply and intricately grow to understand half of my ancestral heritage.  The settler Scot/English heritage

I grew to know and love.  But I had a longing for more.  A deep disconnect and discord grew within me.   Something that my families lapsed Christian background couldn’t fill. A piece of me was not only missing but purposefully denied, hidden, and buried.

The first twenty years would teach me how to be inclusive, kind, and hard working.

A freedom to enjoy everything Canada stands for without too much conflict, hatred, or apathy for who I was in the world.

A spiritual sickness would grow as well.

The one we all experience in the colonized, capitalist world we live in, the consume at all costs mentality.  I knew nothing of balance, respect, or oneness.  I lived primarily in my mind, trusting in science, modern life, and being a good person entitled me to a ticket to it all.   That life would always give a good outcome.  I could trust that because I was a part of a community with the same values.  Work hard, be a good woman/mother, take care of family, and hide my pain/authentic self at every turn.

I could achieve any dream and I could find other settler friends willing to support me without conditions, jealousy, or lateral violence.  But I had to bury anything deep, profound, or the silence the words in my mouth that would create chaos or change. Performing became the way to get what you needed rather than just plain being yourself.

Appearances and the upkeep of them, the foundation of a “good” Canadian life.

I would observe but not fully partake.  As I had a home but I never felt home in it.

It was not my lane.

After twenty years of travelling this part of my experience, I would change lanes. 
Through tragic slow moving circumstances,

I would be bitten by a snake.  It was an initiation, to a path that would take me twenty more years to complete, to many locations , to many nations, and to many teachings.  I was seeking to reach the depths of truth.  I was seeking to find the truth of who I was so I could really accept it all. Perhaps even grow to  love it.  I would learn and explore the roots of my Indigenous side through key, synchronized, and always mysteriously aligned meetings of destined teachers of spiritual learning I never wanted but needed.  Sometimes these connections would last many phases of the moon and stars.  Some would produce children.  Some were brief but put a irreversible mark upon my spirit.   They would all show me the way to balancing the poison within my blood, body, and spirit.

The cure for spiritual sickness so widespread in the modern world.  I have wrestled and resisted the changes my path would bring.

Funny how we resist change even when it brings the things we long for.  I would open to twelve Ancestors who would guide my path and give me the medicine teachings to help all our relations.  It wasn’t an easy path as I learned through experience that Indigenous people had deep rooted trauma, had been victims of genocide, and struggled to live in freedom as the rest of Canada did.  I would experience the very real hatred, racism, and vulnerability of being Indigenous.  It felt like a heavy weight that everyone could feel, expected you to carry, and one you could never fully put down without some very significant efforts from the rest of Turtle Island.   I discovered that the hard way.  It could not be done alone.

I tried.  The pain felt irreconcilable. 

I would learn to smudge, pray, connect with Elders, the land, and participate in sweat lodges.  I would march for MMIWG, Idle No More, and Standing Rock.  I would learn the slang, wear a ribbon skirt, and pick medicines.  I would attend pow-wows and sun dance ceremonies.  I would learn the ways of other tribes.  I would learn to drum and sing, bead, and make bannock.  I would get a hand poke tattoo on my face.  I would trace my Ancestors roots and reclaim my connection to my homelands (Edmonton and Maskwachis, Alberta).  When I came to be full in my experiences with this side of me, I deeply longed to share, all that I had gathered over twenty years.  I had healed the snake bite. I was spiritually well.  I craved to be fully acknowledged for who I thought I was. But it would not be meant for me.

As I had a home, but I never felt home in it.  It was not my lane.

To say this intensified my pain is an understatement.  I would waiver and change lanes one last time.  The path of walking in circles, was soon to end.

The discovery of 215 unmarked graves of children would speak volumes of the genocide silently imposed upon generations of Indigenous people over the last 500 years.

The full circle moment needed to crash any further delusions of the truth, invoke healing, and clear the undercurrents of racial divisions.   I would be effected also by seeing the images of myself and my daughter in two major crown corporations campaigns to promote a more diverse brand inclusive to all ethnic backgrounds & minorities (specifically Indigenous).

I felt elated at first.  This was expressed within my own world as a feeling of profound relief that the battle was over.  Grief that it had taken this long.  Real hope was what I felt.  Not having to expect the violence, rejection, disregard and hatred anymore.  For a moment I experienced this.  But as I sit here writing, I see that as the summer and ravaging forest fires have set in, the issue seems lost.

Perhaps a bit of respite?

The real work has yet to begin.  We must fully honour the truth on all sides. Share stories.  See each other’s hearts.  Come back into the circle of life together.  After much soul searching, time upon the land, and prayer, I was able to see that I could be a part of the bigger picture.  I realized, the purpose of the many times I was rejected in both worlds.  I existed to be the change.  More specifically, the face for change.

What that means is to demonstrate you carry a willingness to truly live in peace, freedom, and unity regardless of what social, cultural, or emotional consequences you may experience.   To stand behind the values of relatedness as a human family.  A willingness to exist in the lane of change. Don’t worry, you can still fly whatever cultural flag you hold.  I’m not saying give up who you are.  Fly that flag loud and proud.  I’m saying give up the hyper-vigilante hold on that being the only source of who you are in the world and include all life as a related whole without judgment and fear.

For the biggest & most powerful lesson I fully received is, that we are all related.  All of life is.  After 41 years, I’m done with the battle. I’m not settler enough to be settler.I’m not Indigenous enough to be Indigenous.   

I decided to be the Face for Change instead.

That’s my lane.  My home. 

Disclaimer: to answer the frequently asked questions we usually get in response to our unique pathway : 

I have soul family all over Alberta, New Mexico , and British Columbia. I have had homes, vehicles, bills, jobs, friends, and long term relationships....I could still if I were to choose it.  If I lived a “normal existence” I would not be able to be an objective lens into the social landscape of the places I spend time in.  The only way to peace is change.

The way forward is for everyone involved to heal.  To be willing to heal.

We are on the cusp of a new chapter in Canadian history to bring about real change.  

Are you willing to be the face for change?

How to help:

��Please share this petition as it will help bring about real change.  It will be sent to every possible person in charge that can truly make this happen.  

��Donate to the cause. 

��Share your pictures & stories on social media with #Bethechange 

��Join Aurora Centre of Healing Page. 

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