Year 1 – 2008/2009, “I was…, but now I am….”

Year I 2008/2009

Sunny Winterroth

I was the baby girl in the family who got whatever she wanted. I was able to fly under the radar and do anything. I still am the youngest in the family but now my parents say “no” more often then they say “yes.” Now I attend schools where it is difficult to go unnoticed. I was desperate for attention but hid it behind an “I don’t care” attitude. Now, I really don’t care, as much as I did. I am more willing to go with the flow. I am less inclined to “cry at the drop of a hat.” Now, whenever my brother calls me “Child of Darkness” it is in jest. I was an unhappy young girl who put a smile on her face because that is what people expected. I was not careful with other peoples’ feelings. I only cared about myself. How I looked and how I felt. Was life going my way? Now, I am more willing to trust. I might not like what is going on in my life, but there is a lesson for me to learn from the tough times.

I was not willing to listen to the advice that loved ones were giving me. Now, every day my father seems smarter and smarter. My brothers are not my enemies anymore and I can actually have a conversation with my mom without her wanting to slap me for being so selfish. I was unappreciative of the little things. I was unwilling to be myself. I was afraid of what people would think of me. I am more confident in my abilities and more willing to let people get to know me.

Shawnee Maracle

Before I didn’t care. I didn’t care about who I was, what I did, nor care where I was going in life.

It just didn’t really matter to me. I lived life day-by-day, only caring about myself and what made me happy. At the time, for me, “happy” consisted of partying with my friends and getting what I wanted. That was about it.

As far as family goes I also didn’t really care about them, how they felt, or how my actions affected them. I put all my time and energy into impressing my so-called friends. I tried to fit in no matter what it took.

Eventually all my not caring and “being cool” started going the wrong way. I started getting into more serious trouble, the kind of trouble that not only affected me in the present but would also follow me into the future. But surprise surprise, me being the person I was, didn’t care.

At that point my life was going downhill and I was fairly content with that knowledge. To me, life was just a pointless game and it wasn’t really important how you lived it.

Then I took a trip across the country and moved into a tepee at the Link School. My life hasn’t been the same since then.

I now have a sense of what I want in life and who I want to be as a person. I also have something I didn’t have before. A sense of self worth.
My self worth isn’t who I am on the outside. It’s not what I wear or what my body looks like. It’s much more than any physical feat I will accomplish. My self worth is who I am on the inside and the qualities I express as a person. My self worth doesn’t depend on what others think about me and my happiness doesn’t depend on that either.

Now I feel like I have a genuine sense of direction and purpose in my life. I am now a person who wants to move forward with my life. I’m no longer content with “not caring.” I do care. I care about the people in my life. I care about what I do. And most importantly I care who I am.