Whew, just typing that out sounds crazy but that’s the estimated number of times you have a thought throughout the day.
You must be exhausted; I know I was!
When I first started this column, I wanted to write about reconciliation awareness but mostly, I wanted non-indigenous people to see our Indigenous people. That’s it, that’s all, I wanted the greater Cape Breton area to see what contributions we Mi’kmaw have given and continue to give to this community.
I started off a little angry because I was very frustrated that we weren’t seen, or I guess that we were seen but were being used as pawns in the companies and organizations around Nova Scotia. Yes, there are still check marks that are filled in and yes there are discussions around the table that still include our vision for the world that go unheard, but there are many of you who do see, appreciate, and love us. Wela’lioq! Thank you all!
It feels good to be heard, it feels good to be seen, I am grateful for your support and feedback.
I asked you all to walk with me and I thank those who have picked up The Third to see where I have been, where I am, and where I plan on going.
The reality is that this column has been really good for my personal growth, it’s been an opportunity to let you ponder the things I ponder, kind of let you see where I come from and maybe learn a thing or two about reconciliation.
I’ve asked you to think about hard topics that have impacted our people. I’ve asked you to think outside the box and use your imagination to come up with solutions and figure out how you can personally contribute to a better world for us all.
I’ve asked you to be kinder to others and you have aspired in every way that I can see. Remember, this is my truth, the way I see things. The feedback, both good and truthful, received from people has been amazing, so, thank you.
Since I’ve returned to Canada, people have told me that I am different. I must agree with those statements, I honestly feel different than when I left. I’ve always liked me, and I feel very good about the person I am if I am truthful, I love myself more than I ever did.
I feel stronger because I am strong. I feel beautiful because I am beautiful. I feel intelligent because I am smart. I feel generous because I am generous. I feel kind because I apply kindness to others. I also feel very happy because, guess what, I am happy.
Sometimes I feel so happy; it’s like lights, sparkles, and unicorns dancing with and around me. Those sparkles, lights, and unicorns are what I call spirit, creator, and my ancestors. They walk with me daily and I am reminded that I need to honour them with my actions, words, and thoughts.
Do I sound conceited? Are you asking yourself, wow, who does she think she is? Well, I now think that I am worthy of great things. My ancestors didn’t do all they did for the next seven generations just so I could say crappy things about myself. No way will I disrespect them or myself. Your god, creator, spirit, nature, stars, moon, or whatever it is you believe and have faith in loves you so you need to love you too.
60,000 thoughts a day folks. In a day you roughly speak and think 60,000 thoughts to yourself. Out of those, how many do you speak of love, kindness, and respect? If you were anything like me you would talk down to yourself, saying things like, ‘I don’t deserve that, why would I ever expect anyone to want me, value me or love me?’ Well, here’s the reality of it, you don’t need anyone to want you, value, or love you except for one person and that person is the most important person in your life. It’s you!
I you can’t need, want, or love yourself how can you expect anyone else to? The absolute reality of it is that it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks about you, you fight with yourself enough in your own thoughts without worrying about everyone else.
60,000 thoughts of nonsense and criticism is a lot for someone to listen to, so start being kinder to yourself. If you have reached a level where you have been able to kick the negative thoughts aside and truly love the person you are then I am so happy for you. I truly mean that because it is a hard thing to do. Retraining your brain about how you should be, act, and conform for “society” is a hard concept to grasp but once you get there it’s an amazing and awarding feeling. Butterflies, sparkles, and light are what you’re left with!
I’ve heard from my elders around Turtle Island that if you don’t love themselves then they can’t love anyone else. People write books about this and are changing how we treat ourselves and others.
I would say, I love myself, but I wasn’t truthful to myself. I was still telling myself that I was unworthy because people told me I was unworthy. I wasn’t in love with myself because someone didn’t love me the way I expected to be loved. I wasn’t respecting myself because I allowed others to disrespect me. I no longer allow anyone to disrespect me, and I am a better human, better mom, better partner, and better friend for it.
These are all truthful things about me and my perception of who I was – and am.
Do you remember the angel and devil that sat over Bugs Bunny’s head in the Saturday morning cartoons? The devil would tell him to do bad things and the angel would remind him to do the good things.
Readers more than 40 years old have that image in their head right now, don’t lie, lol. In any event those speakers in your head tell you how to move along in life. They can be powerful and allow you to choose what is good and bad, mostly about yourself and you reflect those perceptions onto others around you. Don’t believe me, think about this. Those talking heads, they talk a lot and are always there, admit it, judging them and yourself.
You see someone out in public and say in your mind, ‘they shouldn’t wear those pajamas to the grocery store. I would never go out in public looking like that,’ then you think about how embarrassed you are for them or even worse, angry because they showed up in their pajamas and you took so much time to get ready and presentable to go out.
Maybe ask yourself these questions and really reflect on the answer. Does it have more to do with them or with you and why do you allow your thoughts to consume so much space within your mind?
Why are you so vested in what someone else is wearing?
Is it because you took so much time to be presentable and you’re upset that they haven’t taken the same time? So, it’s about you, not them, believe me when I tell you this. They don’t care about what you’re thinking in your brain because they are not a part of that discussion.
Now if you feel obligated to express those thoughts I suspect that you would get a response that was similar to ‘it’s none of your business why I wear my pajamas’ or maybe it’s a honest answer and they say ‘I could hardly get myself out of bed but my child needed cereal so I gave everything I had in me to get up, start the car and drive here to the grocery store only to be judged by you.’
Your opinion about how that person is dressed isn’t all that important now, is it. You’ve not only wasted precious time in your brain thinking about something that is of no concern to you, doesn’t affect you other than your ability to allow that thought to consume you.
Now your thoughts and voiced perceptions of how that person should be dressed, according to your values, is sitting on their shoulders. Another voice is sitting in their head because of what you thought was best for them even though it had nothing to do with you. You simply applied your own misconceptions to their life about how one should dress.
This is how I have peace in my life, how I’m happy, and how I can be joyful with others. I do the work! What’s the work you ask? It’s asking yourself a few questions so that those simulations (thoughts) you ask yourself 60,000 times disappear, and you can have peace in your mind to discover the more beautiful things in life like being happy and joyful.
Is it true?
Do you really know if what you think is the absolute truth? You don’t because you are not that person and your truth is your truth, not everyone thinks like you, and maybe your perceptions are misguided.
Whose truth is it and why do you allow it to be your truth or is it a reflection of you?
Is their appearance more about you or them? Maybe you’re the one who is ticked at yourself because you took so much time to ‘doll up,’ because maybe someone will see you and say something bad about you, like you’re thinking about someone right now. Why do you care so much? Do you not love yourself enough to just be you, no makeup or matching socks?
Does it contribute or add joy to your life?
Has that thought brought about emotions that are now feeding your disposition. Emotions are real, emotions are strong, and emotions are brought on by your thoughts. If it doesn’t make you joyful, kick it aside.
If you didn’t think about that thought, where would you be?
Without the thought you wouldn’t be worried, angry, anxious, or irritated and you wouldn’t have had those feelings and emotions that quite simply are time consuming and irrelevant.
Simple, huh? Well, it’s not easy to do, but once you start, it becomes natural. I encourage you to try it and ask yourself some of these questions.
See how throwing out those negative thoughts about you and others can add joy to your life and make life simpler by applying positive thoughts about you in its place.
My life is simple these days, it’s filled with so much peace, joy, and happiness, and above all it’s filled with love. That’s the biggest part of reconciliation, Love, love heals all.
Love yourself then you can truly love others.
Postscript: My Dear Santa a.k.a Deadpool letter has not been met with a response, but I still believe we still have a few more weeks before Christmas.