I'm arika, I'm 21 and I am an Indigenous Australian from the Wakka Wakka people of queensland. My great grandmother is also cree.
I've always understood my Aboriginal culture and have grown up with my mother practising traditional medicine and culture as well as her 'white mans world job' I didn't grow up on a mission, neither did my mother or her mother. I went to all the right (white) schools but i was always singled out as the "black girl who isn't dark so she can't really be black but she's not white either" I was always the one teachers asked to speak about my culture when they had to teach a section in history class, I was the one other students would call 'nigger' and 'coon' sometimes 'abc' and 'boog' behind my back and laugh. You would think at a school deemed "australia's my prestigious school" they would be a little more refined...dignified...I was the only Indigenous person in my class, and also the school, my cousin was the first Indigenous person ever a few years before. I've grown up in a world where I wouldn't normally belong, but my grandmother scrubbed bank floors and cooked and cleaned every day, day and night for 30 years in redneck central queensland to send her 7 children through some fancy boarding schools so they could get good jobs... my mother became what she wanted to be because she was given the chance, but she still held her culture and she believed sending me to a fancy school would benefit me, it did... just not in the way she thought it would, it opened my eyes to hidden racism, phony little rich girls, and materialistic things that i realised i didn't really want. So I'm here to add to my growing interest in finding out about my great grandmother and her culture.
My grandmothers mother came from canada many years ago and met my grandmothers father who was a full blood (medicine man) from the Goreng Goreng/Wakka Wakka tribe.
My family has always lived with their Aboriginal culture, but never really their cree culture, my mother has been finding out more and more over the years for her own knowledge but as a kid i was never really that keen, I just wanted to do the normal kid type things.
But as I've grown older and travelled to where she comes from (thunder bay) and stayed with some friends on a reserve in south dakota I'm learning that now that I know my identity and my Aboriginal Culture, i feel i should start to find out where my great grandmother's culture and life began.
some of you may think i'm a wannabe or a poser... I'm not sure, all i know is that i'm a part of my great grandmother, and I want to understand that part of me more.
so here I am..