"Vulnerability is allowing yourself to be unapologetically Black, unapologetically Indigenous. To operate in multiple planes of thought. To use slang and Ebonics in one sentence, and to speak eloquently in the next. It is accepting your paradox and embracing it with your whole self. To allow your boundaries to be the only lines that define you, to be multi-dimensional in your healing."
In decolonizing the family, I understand now that there is no shame in raising my children together with the larger community.
A night of dancing on Granville with an insta-queen and now real-life friend. We bonded over 90's hiphop and perusing a late-night sex shop. Getting lost on Burnaby mountains and shopping makeup, sipping sangria and sharing stories of men, family, and dreams. Eating tacos and getting lit at 11 AM, thick accents on point as we laughed and teared up, mourning and celebrating in the moment, like Indigenous women do. And finally, pasta and poetry shared on an adventure of lost restaurants, a decade's worth of friendship, and planning the next sleepover.
This work has to be done collectively. One person could not do it all. That collective mentally is deeply embedded in indigenous teachings as is upholding our sacred responsibility from our ancestors.
"...all I want is for our upcoming generations to have moments peace just like that with their own songs, prayers, and ceremonies."
It's been a learning experience, and we are so thankful to have met a lot of inspiring new and established artists along the way.
However, over the past few weeks, I’ve been looking over in admiration at other artists more than I’ve been looking within, and although I want to get sit, sip and bring my ideas to fruition, I also want to celebrate the success of some kick-ass ladies working hard at that they love.
I remember when I first started "putting myself out there" and setting up photoshoots in my Edmonton apartment I would get extreme anxiety before people would come over. I would think of many ways to cancel. It took all of my willpower not to.
We are more than natives wrapped in blankets, or inuit on the land in fur parkas. Many of us have adapted, much like our ancestors, to their own harsh environments.
My Indigenous identity continues to be at the core of my practice and includes concepts involving land, memory and history with the majority of my work being produced on Six Nations Territory.