Anger: Fuel to the fire

I was always angry as a teenager. Being bullied and abused; these things were fuel for me to be just like the people that were hurting me. When I hurt other people, I felt good, but it was only temporary, it wasn’t really happiness. I wanted to hurt the people that were hurting me and I always felt that I wasn’t strong enough. When I finally tried to hurt the people that hurt me, I didn’t feel good, I felt even more hurt. I wasn’t helping them by me doing what they were doing to me. It’s not me who they hate, it’s themselves, they hate themselves and they are using me to release their anger. This emotion is so powerful, it can ruin friendships, destroy families, and create more chaos. If we keep adding fuel to it, it only gets worse and it will never get better.

I had to learn how to control it and not let it control me. Even today, I still practice anger management, because there are times when it does get the better of me and I hurt people with my actions or words and I never feel good when that happens. If we take a breath, a walk, a nap, or cry or talk with someone, these things help release the tension that is built up inside of us and then we don’t use that negative energy, we extinguish it.

When I feel down, I listen to music, I vent to my friends and just walk. These things helped me so much through out my teen years and even into my adult life. I always want to be in control of my life and my actions and always try to avoid doing things that will affect those that are around me negatively.

I’ll talk a bit about how I hurt someone that hurt. My step-father, he wasn’t the greatest of people in my life, but he was still part of my life. He would always hit me, swear at me, and try to make me feel like less than I was. I would take it all, I would cry, and I would never do anything about it. When finally I had enough, all the anger, all of the rage, all of the hate that I had built up inside of me, I let it all out. I finally hit him back, I swore at him back, I didn’t hold back. I wanted to hurt him, like he hurt me. When it was done. I didn’t feel better, I hurt a lot, my heart broke. Because, this man, though he wasn’t my father, he was still the only man in my life that played a role in my upbringing, he was the only father figure I had, he was the only person I called “dad” for years, and I just hurt him. I cried and I apologized and I hugged him.

Even the people that we think we hate, we still have feelings for them, because of how much they have been involved in our lives. I forgive him for everything. I forgive everyone that has hurt me and those that will eventually. I know they are going through things and just need to release their anger.

-EB

Growth

I always wanted to be taller and I always wanted to learn new things. Both of these things are a type of growth, one is physical and the other is mental. I always asked questions and when I wasn’t able to get the answer, I would try to find the answer. As for being tall, I grew a lot, I am 6’7″. I am still growing mentally, physically, not so much.

The problem with mental growth is sometimes we come across people who don’t want us to grow so they try to stun us. When they successfully stun us, we are stuck, we can’t get out, because we believe everything they called us and told us. I had this happen to me a lot. I would be made fun of because I was trying to learn, this stunned me. This made me think that wanting to learn was not something everyone needs to do, so I strayed. This stun lasted for years until I finally found myself again, asking questions and wanting to learn again. I didn’t learn for many years because the people that made me cry because they laughed at me for wanting to know more, affected my ability to express myself.

We don’t know the power of our words and things we say to people. Sometimes we trigger something and that is it, that person is defeated. Why bring people down when we can help them grow and become so much more. Because I was brought down, I wanted to drag others with me, I didn’t want to be alone. After time and healing, I began to help others up and then that same thing was happening to me, people were helping me up and helping me grow.

Our minds are power, but are vulnerable to emotions, and these emotions can be poisonous or nurturing.

When you see some struggling ask them what you can do to help. If they don’t want help, insist, if they decline, then you tried. But know that, you made a difference, because you tried to help, just trying is enough some times. That is enough for someone to grab themselves and know that someone else cares and is wanting you get out of the rut you are in.

It took me a long time to realize that you never stop growing. Your mind and body growing with potential every time you learn and feel. When I first felt love, love with another person, it was beautiful. I grew to like love, it made me feel happy to have someone who I could express myself to and not worry. After that love was gone, I felt hurt, it was a different kind of hurt. It wasn’t like I lost someone to death, but it hurt enough to make me cry. This hurt was new to me and it also helped me grow as a person. I learned the two parts of a relationship.

We have to help each other grow. We have to nurture our hearts and minds. Growth is key to making a better tomorrow.

 

-EB

Hope

We sometimes hope to see someone again that has left us, we sometimes hope to be millionaires, we sometimes hope for a new start. We hope for a lot of things, but there are things we never have to hope for. Like clean water, fresh air, family, food, because these are things we may already have access to. I remember hoping to get new clothes when I younger, because the clothes that I was wearing were too small and were beginning to fall apart. I also remember hoping for a new game or game console. These were the kinds of things I hoped for when I was a kid. As I got older things that I hoped for I had and then I began to hope for new things, like shoes, popularity, iPods, etc. I wanted a lot more, a lot of the things that I hoped for were never really necessary, but I wanted them because they would make me feel better and make me feel cool. I never understood why I could never get the things that I wanted, but as I grew older and matured I realized that there are things that your parents can and cannot afford. I hoped for someone to notice my cool new shoes and then I would my mom and dad would be together again. I had two separate things I hoped for in my life, things that I wanted and things that I needed. Like I wanted shoes. But I needed my family to be whole again, so I could stop crying every time I saw dad. I always asked him when he was coming home and he said he can’t. Then I would cry more. I would hope and hope that one day my family would be whole again. I eventually grew out of it, I stopped hoping for that. I knew that those kinds of things will not alway happen. My mom and dad are still separated, but my relation with my dad is perfect. My family may not have been whole or together when I was younger, but they are together in my heart.

I no longer hope for thing that I know that I can get. I only hope things that I know I am unable to achieve on my own. I am capable of doing a lot of things on my own and if I want something, I will get it. Like if I want shoes, I will buy shoes. If I want more games, I will buy more games. If I want pizza and pop and chips, I will get it. I am not longer limited to the things that I want. I can go out to the store and grab whatever I want on the spot. If I am unable to get things at the store I go online and purchase it. I no longer for miniscule things. I now hope for larger and more prized things. I hope that one day I will travel the world. I hope that I will change the world. I hope that I am able to provide a future for my family and friends. I hope that I can make a difference in each persons life that I meet. I hope that I wake up every morning. I hope that my family is safe. I hope that health is okay. I hope that I will always be happy. There is so much that I hope for. I know that my hopes can only go so far and there is only so much that can be hoped for.

I am not saying stop hoping for things, your hopes are the only things that you come up with and those things motivate you. Keep hoping, you are motivating yourself to keep your hopes up and to eventually get the things that you want and need. Hope for things are possible and don’t rely on them, because sometimes thing we hope, we can achieve and get our own. We have to believe in ourselves as much as we believe in the hopes we have.

 

-EB

No limits

Trying to keep my mind active as possible when I am awake is a real task. Because, I want to be as productive as possible and do everything efficient as possible. This is part of training my mind and my body. Being aware that I am not completely ready for certain tasks or noticing that I am still lacking in some areas and that I need to improve. I have this problem. It’s called being lazy and I like to make excuses for when I am lazy. I can think of a million things as to why I deserve to be lazy and continue to be lazy for the rest of the day, the week, or the month. I try not to let myself fall victim to these kinds of things too often, but there are times where I do slip and I readjust and try again. I try to keep myself disciplined and maintain a schedule so that I am able to complete as many tasks, plans, ideas, and other projects. Doing this allows me to train my mind and body and stay disciplined.

You have no idea the wonders of getting your first real job and how life changing that is. I was jobless back in 2012 and I wasn’t able to find any work in the small town that I live in. I keep trying and trying. I was brought on to the town volunteer fire department and did that for couple of months. To my luck, the manager of the store was also on the fire department and he got to know the type of person that I am and the type of attitude I have towards work. He eventually got a hold of me and offered me a job at the local grocery store. Where I have been working for the past 6 years. I was on social assistance since I was 18, then when I finally got my job at the coop, I got off social assistance and have never needed it since. I worked my way up the ladder. I now make a pretty decent pay cheque, I am the second most senior employee at the store, I am also the store’s Union Shop Steward, and I am full-time.

When I first started working there, I wasn’t impressed with the pay as it was low and I was expecting more. But then I realized, I was getting two of these kinds of pay cheques in a month as a opposed to $310.95 a month. I was getting $270.00 every two weeks. That’s $540.00. Which means I making more than I was when I was on social assistance. The more I worked, the more responsibilities were dropped on me. The more responsibilities dropped on me, meant it was time for me to ask for more pay for the amount of work I was doing, this is what I thought was fair. I talked to my manager, which was a different manager then the one that hired me, he agreed that I was doing more work and that it would be fair for me to get a raise. After my raise I kept climbing the ladder and then eventually took on the role as the Shop Steward and then I wanted to make more hours and eventually became full-time. After I became full-time, I haven’t been happier. I worked to get this far and I only want to keep climbing. I almost to the top.

I am just saying, the more excuses you make, the less you will be able to do. You are limiting yourself from your own potential. You just have to reach out and try. I didn’t know that I was capable of doing the things I do today. Like, I didn’t know that my opinion had any weight to it, until I actually started speaking and having people hear what I had to say on the subject or the matter. I have been very open about how feel things are being done and how we could be doing things more efficiently and more productively. Don’t limit yourself and don’t limit those around you. You never know what some people are capable of and what you are able to do. Our actions help shape the world around us and then it begins to ripple to others, thus causing an effect, one of which is good for all.

-EB

Thoughts…

I am always thinking of what to share and how to share. I try not to filter myself, but I also don’t want to be vulgar and aggressive when sharing my opinion and thoughts. There is a time for everything and there is also no time to waste. I am trying to be productive and always wanting to share my thoughts on certain subjects; such as, indigenous culture, healing, progress, northern life, and community. My opinion may not be the same as others, but it’s my opinion and what I believe in at the present time. Opinions change, just as the wind blows, different things effect that. I don’t want to cater to the opinion of others and I certainly don’t want my blog to be a place of hate. I know that I mention a lot of returning to where we were, but really, I am saying is that we adapt to the modern culture and make our traditions live through this process. Because, there is no way that we can go back to the way it was. It is impossible. There are governments, laws, policies, and regulations always in place that prevent the “old ways” ever coming back. There is of course preservation and maintenance of knowledge that has been passed down. People have been passing the history of our people and the history of the north through words and not really writing it. We can preserve ourselves by writing the stories and the traditions on paper and make it live forever.

I’ve read articles of different nations that have adapted to the modern world have flourished. They own businesses and protect lands and make jobs for their people. This is the kind of adaptation I would like to see for all of us in the north. Not just Northern Manitoba but all over the country. If we were to do the things that the other nations are doing, we too can reap into the life of the wealthy and still be helping our people and the land and the history of our ancestors. We don’t have to industrialize the lands, the food, ourselves, we just have to find better economical marketing. Like tourism, camping, workshops, art, music, and teaching respect of the land and animals.

I believe we can make a difference in our nation and help our people become healthier, stronger, and more resilient than ever before. We can show how resilient we really are and how much we are able to adapt and make this world of ours a better place for people of any nation and any color. Our hearts are in the right place, but we have to change the thinking that has been instilled into many of our friends, family and country. We also have to be careful when doing this change, because not many will agree. it’s not a matter of disagreeing and agreeing, it’s a matter of making a future for those whose life will be affected from our decisions and how they are going to live their lives with our changes and choices.

This of course is my opinion on this subject…

-EB

What is and isn’t ours…

We’ve learned that we gain ownership over things and many of those things do belong to us and there are things that don’t. We don’t own everything we come across and just because we have it, that doesn’t necessarily mean, it is ours. You’re told to take care of many possessions that you are given growing up, such as clothes, toys, books, computers, cellphones, and most importantly yourself. You get it, there are a lot of things that we get and we are given responsibility when we are given these things. This responsibility matures along with us. The more responsible we are, the longer our possessions last. This is the same thing that is applied to everyday life. If we make responsible decisions we see the difference it has over our workplaces, life, environment, home, etc. Take for example instead of eating junk food, we purchase vegetables and fruits, this choice is better for our bodies and health. This can also be applied to recycling as opposed to garbage disposal. The choices we make are responsible for many things that we some times ignore or aren’t aware of. We are responsible for the land, the trees, the animals, and the water. We don’t own them, we borrow them and give them back. This is the power of decisions and responsibility and understanding what we own. The things that we do own are things that have been gifted to us through our birth into this world. Like, our bodies, mind, soul, and heart.

The idea of purchasing and owning land is a colonial thinking. When people are fighting for ownership of land, are they fighting for it because they want it back for mother-earth? Or are they fighting for it because they want to use it for their own benefit? Or are they fighting for it because of traditional reasons? When we fight for land, we must fight to have it preserved and nurtured and loved. Not for things as trivial as Mining, Deforestation, Oil, and other industrial projects. The lands that we possess through way of purchase or treaty should be used for ceremony, burial, preservation, and gardening. These are things that are beneficial to our people and the land.

I realize a lot of people don’t have this same way of thinking. They say that certain land belongs to them and their family only, but if we are to move from that kind of thinking we will be able to reconnect with the earth, our ancestors, and traditional teachings. We will be able to see what matters the most, the land. The land is always gonna be there, but the trees, the grass, the animals, won’t, they will eventually disappear and what good is land that has no life? Just as it is hard to live without knowledge, love, and happiness. When we start living without the care of possessing something or wanting to own something, we will have the ability to easily let go of ownership. We don’t own the land, we belong to the land, like a child belongs to a mother. When we are young, our mother takes care of us, and when our other grows old, we take care of our mother. This is the same thing with the land. We must return the things that we borrowed, such as the air we breath, the water that is inside of us, even our very bodies, all of these must be given back to the land, so that it can heal and give new life again.

I am still learning to let go and how I can help others do so too. We don’t let go of the land, but we let go of saying it belongs to us, we let go of colonial thinking and let go of profiting. The land doesn’t belong to anyone. There may be governments and corporations that say they own the land, but who did they buy it from? From the people who were there first. The people that were there first didn’t know that they were giving away their mother, their survival, their home, and their traditions. They knew they were benefiting, because they were taught that they owned it and that because they own it, they can give it away. We mustn’t give away what isn’t ours, as we are taught this is stealing, and stealing doesn’t do any good for anyone. If there is ever a time when all the land is gone and destroyed, we already know why, because colonialism.

You can share your home, your thoughts, your food, your knowledge. You can share the land, but you cannot sell it, buy it, or own it.

-EB