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  • I grew up here, on the reservation, and I think I should know more than just the name of some ceremonies, some traditional stories, and a portion of my cultural tongue. I wish I knew what it felt like to actually participate in a ceremony and be able to experience it so I could know what I'm talking about instead of second guessing myself when trying to explain what a specific ceremony is about. I wish I knew what it felt like to pray in a sweat lodge, but my mother still believes in girls not sweating. I wish I remembered more of the traditional stories that were told to me, but just hearing a story once does not allow me to memorize and comprehend it. I wish I grew up hearing my language spoken fluently. Then maybe I wouldn't have to worry about carrying around this broken tongue and feeling ashamed when I stutter trying to pronounce a word from a language my ancestors have spoken for centuries. Then maybe I wouldn't secretly feel dumb for not knowing how to put a sentence together. I wish my brain was big enough to cram it all in. Noun first, verb last because in Lakota English is backwards, but I just want it to be simpler. However, in all reality Lakota should be the simplistic one and English should be the complicated one, but this generation has it backwards. I just wish I knew what it was like to grow up in the times thousands of years before me. I just wish I knew so much more because I know a lot, but a lot compared to everything seems like nothing.
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