It's no secret that I have been in a state of contemplation and exhaustion, at which I feel has been rooted in a feeling of defeat for our people. However, my body, mind, and spirit desire liberation. It is this desire to heal and move forward by recreating the tools necessary to once again be liberated. It is through my work as a midwife that I find inspiration and the realization that the power to change our future is within our own grasp, but the tools to do so are not. I feel consumed in my efforts to create a path to do so. I worry my strong desires and courageous efforts will mean nothing and that all I have sacrificed will have been for..what?
I tell my story not for empathy or to shame those who have contributed to it, but more as a need to be understood, humanized, and to no longer be an invisible piece of history....at which is how our indigenous histories are viewed to this day to be...invisible. As I sit in silence contemplating my reality, this quote strikes a cord in me.
"We must and will have women leaders among us. Native women are going to raise the roof and decry the dirty house which patriarchy and racism have built on our backs"
As we move forward with our birth center work, nothing is more of a reality check then to see and feel the wall we are up against. It is disheartening to see mainstream medical systems appropriate knowledge from disenfranchised communities, then to use it in a manner that further marginalizes these communities for their own financial gain. This does not sit well with me.
I am honored to stand with my midwife sisters as we toe the line in representing our marginalized communities, cultures, multi-cultural perspectives and world views. We each have our stories to tell and our own healing paths to walk. Believe it or not we each carry within ourselves scars of historical trauma that is being healed as we process each obstacle life presents to us. The work that we have done thus far has been built on our backs, it has been drawn from what little resources we have and we are painfully aware that our savings grace is not someone else coming to save us, but rather we must do the work to save ourselves.
I realize my silence does nothing to help our efforts and only in speaking up about our struggles do we begin to humanize our stories.
A woman chooses a path following the old laws, set in todays world to free her people