Mni Wiconi | Wade in the Waters

14 min readNov 16, 2016

I just returned from Standing Rock, and today Donald Trump was elected president. I’d like to share my thoughts. But I am still utterly exhausted from a 16+ hour road trip/ bus ride. On the bright side I had my first shower in a week and washed my hair. But there is still some mud underneath my big toenails from walking into the Cannonball River barefoot one sunset…

To say this is like night and day, to say I have mixed feelings… is an understatement. After all of my travels around the world, Standing Rock and the Rosebud Camp on the Lakota Sioux reservation is by far the best place I’ve ever been. Going there, at the very last minute, with strangers, to a conflicted area under police surveillance, at the brink of a North Dakota winter, with no tent of my own (nor even a coat!), to camp, on my own, at seven months pregnant is up to now the best decision of my life (stay tuned for my next big plans…).

Two days ago 400 Native youth and their allies march in silent prayer up to the front lines of where Energy Transfer Partner’s “Dakota Access Pipeline” is being built through sacred burial ground of the Sioux tribe and their ancestors, illegally. As part of this peaceful prayerful action one youth offered water that had been blessed to every police officer there guarding the DAPL destruction. One officer took a water. The crowd turned around and marched back in silence to the Cannonball River to conclude the ceremony by sprinkling tobacco into the water with prayer.

Please let this image sink in: 400 teenagers silently marching up to police who have abused, beat, arrested, and openly mocked them them, who have protected the desecration of their ancestors, their elders, their land. The silence of hundreds of teenagers, united, determined, disciplined, principled, prayerful. That is power.


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