abimommy - I was refering to ppl always talking about how the 'White Man' has been oppressing our ppl for 500 yrs. Columbus may have landed on Plymouth Rock 500 yrs ago, but that doesn't mean that settlers were all over America. It has really only been the last 300 yrs, if that.
Little Bear's Mama - I still speak both my languages and speak them to my children. I am very tradional, ie- pipe carrier, I am the person who names the children, healing ceremonies, etc. I also sing. I do know what you mean, tho, about being away from it all. I had to hide all my ceremonial stuff because of ppl's b.s. Long story short, I was being racially harrassed and was and still am in fear of them calling the police. It is sad that my children see this. I want to be able for us to live in peace and without fear.
My 7 yr old dd struggles with knowing who she is, but that is because of all the stereotyping out there. The kids at school make fun of her skin color and her hair. The teacher told her that 'You get to go to school for free because you are an indian.'
My dd was really confused by that statement. The teacher also told the other kids that the reason my dd always has nice clothes and new toys is because all indians get casino money. Arghhhhh!!!
So, lots of discussions and talk and dealing with hurt feelings. I really wish I had never sent her to school, kwim? I won't even go into the crap around Thanksgiving. needless to say my dd was volunteered to be the indian.
Okay, no more ranting lol! Our children will do just fine. If we talk to them and tell them the stories, they will know who they are. I have always taught my children they are human beings worthy of being loved before teaching them anything else, kwim? I just figure that is what we all are first and foremost.