Where do you stand?


I am awake, I am alive, and today I am simply thankful for those so willing to hear my words…

Last night, the opportunity to speak as the Keynote at the OASW Northwestern Annual General Meeting to a room filled with social workers who have dedicated their careers to making a difference.

And they knew who I was.
And they follow my work.
And they were thrilled to have me there.

Their acceptance and willingness to listen got me thinking, thinking of how just one generation ago, my Mom knew no such luxury. As an uneducated (in the eyes of those who threw stones) Indigenous female, my Mom’s words were often dismissed as soon as they were uttered. At least until she became the “angry Indian.” Then she was converted from unseen and unheard to undesirable, no matter how justified her rage.

And then I thought of the countless circles of so-called friends I have stood within, my voice unheard, no one caring my opinion on this or that.

And then I thought of all those still lost in such circles.

And with those thoughts racing through my head, I thanked that audience of social workers and Creator for helping me to find my way out.

So my friend, today let us remember even the coldest winter and the darkest, scariest night eventually end. Having said that, time passes without assistance from us. Changing your circumstances, on the other hand, will take work. It won’t happen on its own, but it can change.

Go to one new place.

Dare to make one new friend (especially someone who has achieved some of the things you hope to achieve).

Add positive messages into your day (to assist to offset those negative ones).

And the most important one (the one that took me years to realize), stop believing all people are like those negative, judgmental people in your world because it simply isn’t true! There are MANY people out there who would love and encourage you, people who would LOVE to hear your words.

Unless of course, you have become one of those people who don’t care to hear other people’s voices. In that case, you are simply standing among your own, unless you choose to change …

So who are you my friend and where are you standing?

Today, please head for the garden. Stand among the flowers. Heaven can and does exist here on earth when we choose carefully where we stand and who we stand beside.

I know. I live there.



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