|Posted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 7:15 am Post subject:|
|PETE AND REPEATSadly, the drama that is playing out in my life is being played across the Native world as we speak. The yellow shroud of death hovers over all reserves as cirrhosis hunts down and kills all who tempt fate. Though my beloved sister has contended all along that she “did it to herself”. As we speak of life from to the past to the present, I’m struck by the despair, grief and sorrow in her walk into our childhood. How could I forget those graphic images of people pointing and laughing at us and tossing nuts at our feet like we were squirrels? How could I forget the morning ritual of removing spittle from my schoolbooks and jacket after I make it to class? We would simply not be served and made to look foolish for even attempting it, just cause we were not Milk Toast White. It was an on going event and it never stopped.
Though her story is almost a mirror image of my past. I was reminded of the absolute isolation I once felt. It was living in solitary confinement, not a kind face in the crowd. Just the memory of shear loneliness overwhelmed my senses as we reflected. Tears streamed down my face as I recalled the anguish of isolation. It was not hard to imagine how Jewish children felt when Hitler took command of Germany. People showed public acts of disrespect, would call us vial names and lewd comments. Some people simply shoved us while others laughed. There was no sanctuary.
Years of being told you are dirty have taken its toll. How many rocks must be tossed to us before we become conditioned to believe their vial words? How much rubbish must be dumped on us before we realize we are only trash in others eyes. How many times must we be beaten before we “get it”? How do you “get over” years and years of conditioning? We were programmed at a very early age and endured hatred in its purest form. Our story is no different than our other brothers and sisters within the Native communities across the America’s. Imagine, generations with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It’s a small wonder people choose to “self medicate”. By and large, our social issues go unchecked, under funded or simply ignored.
Is it the lack of education? Well no since my sis is educated, articulate and most beautiful. She can read people like a book and has plenty of medicine. I consider her my equal as a scholar of life. So scratch that off the list eh.
My sis took full responsibility for her plight and blamed no one. I guess I can see her point since I choose to live on the streets and become a goon and did not plan living past 30, holay. She masked her sorrow with liquor; I masked my sorrow with anger. But for the life of me, with all the holes in my body from life in the fast lane, why is my sister gravely ill when she lived such a sedate life? She never lifted a finger against anyone. I, on the other hand, was a Wiseguy, for the lack of a better term. It was all about the money for me and I walked a very dark path. Why this beautiful little Cheyenne girl? Why someone who never harmed anyone? Why my baby sister?
Today, I talk with the Gastroenteroloist. Sadly, I already know the drill about cirrhosis. I have several herbs I use when working with liver disease. I also have a handle on dietary requirements, all loaded with vitamins and essential nutrients that are designed to help a liver cleanse and heal. I also use the medicine of my people, that intangible aspect of who we are, Capice? I take note of every function in her body. I groom her meals to match her nutritional deficiencies, I read her blood test results and I’m a royal pain in the ass to all her doctors since I HAVE TO KNOW what is happening. This is not my first rodeo, but it’s a first with my baby sister. Two brothers died before I could do a thing. I’ve lost to many uncles and aunts to cirrhosis and diabetes. Now, I’m loosing nephews and nieces to Meth.
Take a snapshot folks fore this is what its like “Being Native”.
You Devil’s Advocate