I have been on a spiritual path for 11 years now. I did not know till I was a teen that I am half ojibway native on Dads side and half French from Moms side.
My father did not talk about being a native man when I was growing up, I did not see, as a child, single out, a native child in the neighbourhood. As a child, to me, we were just all people. I did not know what my father went through as a native child in northern Ontario Canada.
One day, still in my teen years, he presented me with a laminated card that stated I was a native in the eyes of the Canadian government. When I asked him what was the card for, all he said, was, if you want a higher education or need medication, it will be covered. He told me that I was going to sit before a group of native people on the First Nation and asked questions about what I want from this firstt nations and what could I bring to the reservation. I recall that day very clear, still not clear on what I was doing there or what was about to happen. I was brought into a room with a large table and there were native elders sitting around that table. With quiet voices, I was spoken to in what was the ojibway language, I was asked questions, in the language. There was an English speaking person who repeated the questions quietly to me and I answered what I thought was right answers. I was lost.
For years, to my knowledge I belonged to the reservation according to Dad, cause that is where he and his father come from.
At that time in my life, I did not feel any different or did not know if I was, because I was not talked to about my heritage by anyone on Dads side, nor did we participate in any FN events. I was lost.
11 years ago, I started a spiritual path and I found a lot of the native teachings were working for me. I learnt the majority at a place I worked at, I started to understand but knew there was so much still to learn.
So with each new thing I learnt, I shared through out my writings. The beliefs got me through so much hardships over the years and I began to feel like I was an ojibway man’s daughter. I was and am proud to be my fathers daughter. But life is funny, recently I am questioning my faith once again. And it was more evident when I was told I am half breed, and that my French heritage seemed stronger than my native heritage.
I have always seen my native heritage as being the kinder part of myself, it is the spiritual part that made me feel whole.
I don’t know if I would be alive today if it were not for my native spiritual self.
I gained a new respect for my father, I began to understand who is was as a child many years ago to the adult he grew to be.
I may not speak the ojibway language or live on a first nations community, yet I try to respect the teachings when I am presented with them.
There is a bit of a tug of war going on within me now that I was called a half breed, but again, that is just a label.. I am me, I am a child of the Creator, I am my fathers daughter at the end of the day and no matter who may criticize the native man, woman or child, there is no one that can take away, who they are, who I am, mind, body, soul and spirit.. I shall feed my wonder, my inner peace with the grace of the Creator, as He sees fit.