Metis Truth and Reconciliation Day

My Relationship With Truth and Reconciliation Day

Tansi, tansi kiyawow.. Carey dishniskashon. Aen Michif Niya, Ni miyeuhtayn aen nakishkataan. I am a proud MNBC citizen from Mackay, Achee, Chapelle, Bechard and many other lines. My maternal Michif family is from Muskoka, Kenora, New York, with roots in Ojibwas/Chippewas and Iroquois. My father’s family was from Ukraine/Norway. I am a mother of two sons. I was raised here in Langley, unaware of my heritage. It was not until after my mother passed that my sisters going through old birth and death certificates found that my maternal Grandfather was of Metis decent. My mom’s best friend, who herself is of aboriginal descent, had many conversations encouraging my mom to discover her roots and reestablish that relationship. She passed at 49 years old and never had the chance to reconnect with our roots.

I am very grateful that my sisters, sons, nieces, nephews and I have reconciled with our ties to the Metis Nation. It has been a blessing beyond measure to have my sons always know their belonging and history of both lines of their lineage to Metis and European families. They have been able to be apart of drum circles, drum making, beading, jigging and learnings in the Langley School district. They have been blessed with amazing Aboriginal Support Workers throughout their school careers. They have grown up connected and proud in a way that my mom did not have access to.

The video highlights how so many did not know of their Metis heritage until much later in life.

My mom spent her life hidden, not knowing for sure what our connection was to the Metis Community. However, looking back, I see many teachings that were still passed down unknowingly from our Metis roots.

Truth and Reconciliation Day is today, September 30. I feel like each person has a different relationship with truth and reconciliation. My truth came to me when I was 20 years old, and I learned of my connection to the Metis Community. Reconciliation revitalizes my relationship with all that my family and I lost through the years of being hidden. I am still on this journey of discovery. It’s still a hard day for me as I reflect on what was taken from my mom and wish she could have made this journey with us back to our roots. But I am thankful that my sons and I can make this journey back for her and those that came before us.