Tuesday, November 17, 2015

reflections on new experiences

I'm trying to make time for art journaling in my life, no matter how simple it may be.

I always forget how much my artist date/journal soothes me and makes me calmer. It's a meditation that actually in many ways, lets my brain be still because I'm just doing the one thing.

I may have mentioned before that I work with Indigenous students on campus, doing anything from orientations and support for the students to education and sensitization for the larger community.

It's been a crazy roller coaster learning curve for me over the past 2 years. I grew up being told that it was not my place as a non native (now I'd insert the term settler) to try to go into the communities and "fix" things. I grew up with an overwhelming fear of offending and of appropriating a culture that is not mine. Ironically, I can say that that same fear of appropriation wasn't something I translated into other cultures until recently (it's beena  big year of learning over here in Faye land).

Why am I even mentioning this? Well because honestly, being in this position has meant that I find myself in situations where I can feel a bit uncomfortable. I end up collaborating and sharing experiences where I am the outsider again. I am aware of the privilege being extended to me and hyper conscious of the need to be conscientious while participating. It's an odd, yet beautiful combination that keeps me on my toes.

What I love most are the moments when I find parallels and realize that despite the form, I am in communication with the same source; that I am still praying to the God and Goddess; that the ritual is tapping into the same process I am familiar with only differently. These moments make me happy and sometimes, every now and again, when I'm with members of the local community, I sense (or am told) that there is a flash of recognition, of shared understanding.

And it's such a sacred gift when that happens.

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