For the Lakota people, very little was more important than our children. “Children” is the Western translation of Wakanyeja, but for us, it’s so much more than that. The word is essentially two parts: Wakan (holy or sacred) and yeja (little kids, little ones). We didn’t throw around wakan lightly. Children were as important to us as anything could be, protected, cared for, and parented by many.
We’ve lost some of that in the wake of wars, conquest, reservation life, boarding schools, and trauma. I’ve made mentoring and working with kids one of my life’s top priorities, because investing in them, is investing in life. There is nothing without our children.
Below are the articles I’ve written on the subject of youth and raising my own child.
Jaylen Fryberg Is Not Your Indian Savage – 10/25/14
An Indigenous Mother’s Perspective On Pledging – 11/18/2013
Slam Poetry for Trayvon Martin – 7/14/2013
A Note From Mimi on Father’s Day – 6/16/2013
RIP RieLee, Baby – 7/14/12
To Minot With Love – 7/9/12
Letters To My Daughter’s Father – 6/17/12
Teens Need Hugs, Too – 6/9/12
Montessori & Mimi: A Love Story – 5/31/12
Horsin’ Around – 5/28/12