Sunday, August 28, 2011

I'm not alone

I came upon a realization, as of lately and thanks to the evil empire of facebook.

For the rest of my life, I am going to have to put up with the fact that I am a felon, from other people's points of view. I mean, you know me, i really don't give a rat's ass what people think of me ever since I smoked weed in a CRX with my Jamaican friend Junior "I have 13 cousins whose first name are Junior" White. Junior always got deep in conversation but talked to me about not caring what other people think of you, which might explain his style.

Anyway, even though I could give a rat's ass, I realized for the rest of my life any opinion, thought, action I do, is going to be judged and weighed against my past. That's kind of fucked up, but it is what it is, you know. Is it gonna make me shut up?

Hell no! Well actually, I am technically not "speaking" but I will type on, oh yes I will.

Turning my whole journey or experience or whatever you call it, (sentence) from a negative to a positive is what I'm working on in my life, in almost every aspect and on a daily. I find myself getting more and more involved with the community, even though I am somewhat anti-social, they ask, I can't resist. I know some ex-cons don't like to talk about the time they did and ask why I write about it, this is just how I deal, ok? Anything and everything I write is a mouse click away if someone don't like it. And if it upsets your apple cart too bad, don't read me....on here or facebook. Simple shit, simpleton.

Either way, I will write about what I want to, I will still have opinions, I don't care if anyone don't "like" what I think, say, or write...I'm not alone, after all, I have children, my ancestors, and I am blessed in that way.

Saturday, August 27, 2011












































Thursday, August 25, 2011

Free To Be Me

*pic is from over my house in the city

I have always known that I had the freedom to be me, to be who I am no matter where I was.
I was able to handle jail, prison, all of it by laughter and my wit, only because that is the only way I know how to be and it got me along so far.

Often, the table I sat at in county jail was always getting warning for "laughing too loud." That wasn't me, I met some crazy ass wonderful women in there. Out of the two county jails, the federal transfer center in Oklahoma City, and the prison itself, I was surprised to find out what took a good toll and tried it's best to kill my spirit was the halfway house. I wrote the poem Wallow there, because I honestly felt as if I walked into an episode of The Stepford Wives. I couln't believe they had all these 20 something Barbie dolls working with us, looking down their noses at us and acting and making us feel as if we were the scum of the Earth, it got to be depressing, annoying, and I felt hatred burning into my soul.

It was the first place I went in the whole journey where humor got me nowhere, even with most of the residents because everyone else there was letting their spirits die too.

One day I was talking to two older federal ladies about food, I LOVE FOOD! Especially soup and frybread, nothing makes you feel more at home than soup and frybread. Then they told me, Wellbriety has soup and frybread. Of course my ears perked up, mouth already salivating, but I was like
"What's Wellbriety?"

It's like a 12 step program, kind of like AA but not really, it's geared more towards Indians.-they told me.
I was game, frybread, I'm there, thats the rez in me, the skin in me, the big girl in me.
So I signed up.
What I found was a place I could be me, every Friday. A place I could hang out with my people, hear and sing our songs, smudge away negativity and air what I need to in talking circle. It was social, relaxing, and supportive. It showed me, that somewhere in this city, I was free to be me.

Not what I was labeled in society.

Not the number I memorized for the last year and a half.

Not how they looked down at me at the halfway house.

Not how the people who interviewed me looked at me when explaining why I was a felon.

I was Dana, the girl who came in quest for frybread....and found a niche where her spirit was happy.

Thanks for listening as I still sing the praises of Wellbriety.


To see the poem Wallow, please send me an add on facebook. Thank you.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Hang Over Soup "Do Over"

Today's lesson in church was about new beginnings, it kind of tied into all the other stuff I ran into today, like the elder's meditation from Grandpa Fools Crow...

"The greater the faith, the greater the result."
-- Fools Crow, LAKOTA
The Creator designed us to act on faith. We are able to do this by holding firm to our beliefs. If we believe something and if we don't want the belief to change, we need to add the power of the Great Spirit to this belief. We must always have the spiritual added to our beliefs. If we don't add the Spirit, then we may very well change our minds the first time we are tested. Each time we are tested and we don't change our minds, we get stronger. The wind may blow on the red willow trees bending them and causing the roots to grow deeper. The more the wind bends the tree, the bigger, stronger, and deeper the roots grow. We should be happy that we are tested. It's the Creator's way of making us have greater faith for greater results.

Great Mystery, Grandfather, I know if I am tested today that I can count on You to give me the courage to get to the other side. On the other side of every test is the reward of strength. Make me strong.

And a random quote I found while stumbling on the internet,
‎"Don't go around saying the world owes you a living, the world owes you nothing. It was here first." -Mark Twain
~This is a great quote because in fact don't we owe the world? If anything at least a good attitude in life. It's not like we get another one.

It made me think of what my mom told me when I was finally free, don't go around being sorry all the time, because you can't waste your life being sorry, it's done, over with, you move on now.

So I am moving on, starting over, a "do over" what have you, and I am doing it with a new attitude, learning and being more accepting to learn all I can about life while I can.
Like Fools Crow said- "The greater the faith the greater the result."
This time I am going to be more open to learn, to have faith in myself that I can do this and to know that there is no way in this life the world owes me anything, I owe the world a piece of who I am so that one day when I am gone, the things I say and wrote about might be posted as someone's facebook status. Fuck yeah.

(still can't quit cussing, sorry.)

Friday, August 19, 2011

Drove By Yesterday

*pic by my sister Jaida, naturally.

I drove by the exit to Waseca yesterday, the place I like to call Club Fed or Club Feddy Feddy Fat Camp, I am slowly gaining back the weight I lost in there thanks to my new addiction to sweets.
My kids can't believe how I have this new found craving for sweets, and almost anything too. Doughnuts, I never ate before until I went there. It's every other Sunday, you have to stand in line for about 45 minutes to an hour at 7am and get a doughnut, and damned if it don't taste like Krispy Kreme. Ok, I totally don't know what Krispy Kreme tastes like because when I wanted to try the line at the Mall of America was too long. Yet there I was, wearing my sweats, in line with killers, embezzlers, drug dealers and mostly mules, waiting for my fucking doughnut.

It was fucking worth it, though.

You never know how good shit is until you don't have it, hence my new fondness for sweets.

You never know some things until they happen to you.

Like when I drove by the exit yesterday for a split second I wanted to flip off the place just for all the old feelings, the entrapment, the "when am I gonna get the fuck out of here!" feeling, then I remembered Kujo, my room mate who still has 15 years, and Dani, my bunky who still has 27 years, both my room mates whom I love dearly. I helped Kujo with beadwork for her dad's outfit, she gave me my tattoo.
Dani had a girlfriend in there, they both did....but Dani's girlfriend will be getting out soon. She was sad and happy at the same time about that.

So many nights we spent up late talking, them asking me questions about the outside, what is an IPOD, how are cellphones now, that sort of thing...
Both girls try to do their time with little drama as possible, both girls wake up every morning with the thought that this is another day to get through, this is my life, it is what it is. And it was just that, but with alot of laughs.
I was a short timer, drifted in and out of their lives, been there done that, moved on.
When I drove by I thought of where I was last year, how I wanted to feel freedom and see beyond the fence so bad that the glimpse of a Culligan truck confirmed to me that yes, the world is still out there and life does go on....without you. Which seemed harsh, but considering you are one person, it is true, just hard to grasp at the time that everyone in there is in the same boat as you, every single soul doesn't want to be there. The simple act of picking out a candy bar and taking it to a cashier with money is amazing when you first get out.
And I thought of them, my room mates who still got time. And take it on a day by day basis everyday because they have to.
And I have the audacity to take my recovery and supervised release day by day, what they would give to be here.....

Seriously fucking humbled just driving by that exit.

Thank you God, today I am here and not there.

This song reminds me of Waseca, and all the sisters I left. I will never forget the lessons I learned there and the laughs and the wanting of being where I am now. Even though every one that was in there for the rest of this lifetime will wear the label of a "bad person" that never changed the fact that we all have a soul. I remember when this song was playing one day and my friend A (another short timer)looked at me and said "I don't belong here."
"Me neither" I said.


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

I CAN not

I used to have this thought in the back of my mind for a long time. I used to think this before I turned myself in, after, and when I sat my number out...I thought

"One of these days I will drink again."

Like matter of fact and like it was a part of my life I couldn't let go. Or maybe not ready to let go yet.
It was so much a part of my life, I didn't see the illness of it.

A wonderful counselor who listened to Jimmy Cliff, Bob Marley, and Sublime music, somewhat of a left-wing radical, kind of old, fuzzy, hippie dude, showed me one day.

He took the sentence on a dry erase board "I cannot drink while on federal supervised release."

I related to the sentence, bummer, cannot drink, sucks, have to find a way around that, I thought.

Then he underlined CAN. Then he looked at me and said "Dana (because he called us by our first names, everyone else called me Lonehill) look at what you CAN do."

"You CAN do this, because this government may have locked you up but they didn't kill your spirit. Your spirit needs you to take care of you now and you CAN not drink while on federal supervised release. It is a choice you CAN do."

I don't know if he made me see the light or if I felt the planets aligned or what, but I did know that I was strong enough to CAN not drink. That it was a choice also, not just a requirement and obligation.

I was strong enough today, thank god.

I will pray for tomorrow.

Wellbriety Facebok Page

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Facets of Me

As much as I put out there, as much as people know, there is so much more I keep inside. I have a whole side of me out in California, a family I never met and am getting to know because of facebook, and now that I am slowly getting to know them, I am thinking, why did I think this would be so hard? Why did I cautiously step forward like I was stepping in cold water?
I knew since I was a little girl, that a part of who I was, was my family out there. I never thought I would know them, or they would know me. Then it happened, connections were made and slowly I am getting to know them. I have a cousin who is also a writer. I have an aunt who is a sweetheart, an uncle with a strong heart. I wonder now, did I inherit any little trait from any of them? Do I raise my eyebrow like this one, or laugh like that one?
I am thankful today they are in my life today and look forward to meeting them all someday. This proves that love is deep in your heart. Deep inside you know who is a part of you, a facet in your life, especially when you can feel fascination and love for your family, and you've never met.

Everything is so beautiful today. Everything with my life, my kids are with me, my cat, there is no humidity in the air, we have food to eat, the BeeGees are playing right now, and the sun is shining through the trees with the utmost will to shine on me.

And that is another facet in my life.

Friday, August 5, 2011

If I write it.....they will come.

Life is so amazing sometimes.
I wonder why I continue to blog when almost all of my ol' gang of blogging buddies have taken their blogs down, when I have no idea why- when it takes precious minutes out of my day.
I wonder why I get so worked up and passionate about certain things....then it is as if Tunkasila sends me a message and lets me know that
I still am doing what I am supposed to be doing.
I know I need to publish my book, a friend let me know not to be in a hurry, mold it, play with it and shape it. That I will do.
My blog has nothing to do with my book.
My blog is here for a reason, one of those reasons showed up today in an email....

And I know with all of my heart right now, I am doing what I am supposed to be doing. I know this so much, I want to cry almost. I feel this so much, it's as if I am the dude Kevin Costner played in Field of Dreams and I just plowed under my cornfield....

I am almost breathless, the clarity of my dreams, wow, I can't even say.

And I guess

If I keep writing it....they will come.

To the person who emailed, please keep in touch.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

There is no safety net

I was thinking the other day, how close I came to drinking a beer. I didn't have it in my hand or in front of me or anywhere near me, but I craved it as if the foam bubbles were popping in my face. I wanted the feeling because most the time beer tastes like crap, right? That fuzzy, warm feeling you get from head to toe that makes you not give a fuck.

And I wanted that because my Grandma Erna passed, even though, when I hugged her bye a few years ago, I knew it was the last time I would see her ever.

I wanted that beer despite almost 1 year and 7 months into my sobriety because she was gone, because I had no idea how to deal without her, because deep down, I'm an alcoholic...still.

And that showed me that even after all this time, all the time I invested in recovery, there was no such thing as a safety net of time. When I see people getting their coins at AA for so many months years, whatever, that all those coins are worthless. They ain't shit, I would rather have arcade coins.

There is no safety net.

My sobriety is a day by day thing, for sure.

Although I am proud of my one year and almost 8 months now, it ain't shit because my strength is not in that longevity. My strength is in my heart, my prayer, my pure want of a better and longer life. And in my support system, my children, my family, and my Wellbriety group.

The strength in numbers is not in length, but in quantity. In knowing there are those there for me, and knowing that I am not alone.

Mitakuye Oyasin (All My Relatives)

If Grandma Dod were here....

If my Grandma was here, would everything be perfect?
Would the two oldest poodles on Earth, Bear and Shaggy have died?
Would the Cubs have won the World Series?
Would "her son" Obama have seemed more fulfilling?
Would she have been so disappointed in me?
Would the grass in her yard still grow?
Would the price of gasoline have been so high?
Would Charlie Sheen have lost it?
Would she have a facebook under her dogs name?
Would she have won those football picks by now?
Would she have been by my side in court like she was in my dreams?
Would she have made Kaylene name her brand new baby girl after Princess Diana?
Would we have been having a huge cook out for her 77th birthday, all halfway nervous as to whether she was gonna chew us out or not?
Would we all be healthier?
Would we still be the Bright Family?
Would we have snuck away from everyone to get Klondike bars?
I don't know what we would have been doing, what we would have done, or how we would all be now, If she was here.
I know she would have loved us all, told us to love each other, and get along because we were family, live our wait, she would have said that in her mind and heart.

If she was here she would have said "Roll out the barrel, Let's Go! Let's Go! Let's Rodeo! This ain't no got damn rest home, get up! Get up dammit! You can sleep all you want when you die, GET UP!!! LET'S GET THIS SHOW ON THE ROAD, MY CUBBIES PLAY AT 5!"

And we would have jumped our asses up awaiting orders....yes, we would have.

Happy Birthday Grandma, love you, miss you and hope you're watching your Cubbies, where ever you are! With young Elvis!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Scatter Their Own

These guys rock! They have less than 48 hours to make enough money to make their first video. Click on the video to donate. Rock on Scotti and Juliana, wish you all the best!