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  • You grow up knowing who you are, who your parents were, where you belong in the world, for the most part. A generalization to some degree since those of us who actually do the journey to know the self find out we are not who we think we are. Some of us have a greater difficulty figuring it out because of the greater society. Some of this is because there are too many stereotypes and misconceptions floating out there, beliefs that supersede our inner feelings or even what we are told by parents wishing to shield us or prevent hurt. I have boat-loads of opinions about this, but I'll keep them to myself for the moment.

    Identity is in your face at a pow wow. You are surrounded by children, young adults, adults, and the elderly all dressed in a regalia that screams that they know who they are and where they come from and who they are proud to be. In this case, the identity is Cheyenne. Writing about a culture as specific as this one is difficult from the outside, but I am only going to show you what I saw. The stoic faces of those out in the blazing sun, over 90 degrees even at 6 pm were impressive. I was fanning myself in the shade with a bottle of cold water and still I whined about being hot. I sat on a wooden bench, padded with blankets (I have a delicate bottom!) and looked around and watched mothers dressing daughters, fathers dressing sons, and sisters dressing sisters, as was the case with the Two Moons girls, Asia and Trinity.

    I am still figuring out who I am since last December I took a trip to Israel to meet a cousin for the first time, our fathers having been separated at the end of WWII as were many Jewish families. I will never stop learning about me. And that is good.
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