Honoring the Spirit of Life

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I am a senior in the School of Journalism at the University of Kansas, majoring in Journalism and minoring in English. I am also the president of First Nation Student Association, a Native American club on campus.

Honoring the Spirit of Life

Date Posted: 
2013-08-12 10:15

Blog Series:

Myron Longsoldier knows firsthand what it's like to be young, lost, and Native American. By the time he was 9 years old, he had already experienced a bad hangover.
 
"I became involved with drinking from peer pressure, also environment, and problems with low self-esteem," Myron said.
 
Five years later, Myron was a struggling alcoholic. He was sent to penitentiaries for intoxication, disturbing the peace, fighting, auto theft, burglary, minor in possession, and many misdemeanors in about eight different states.
 
In 1975, Myron realized he could have a better life if he was sober. He began to try and stay clean, but after going back to the reservation and facing old friends, he often craved for a drink.
 
Building a relationship with God through recovery programs saved Myron. He was able to put his trust into man because of his sponsor, to whom he shared all of his secrets, shames, and feelings. Confiding in someone also improved Myron's English, which he often struggled with because Lakota was his first language.
 
Myron went back to his Native ways—the language, sun dances, sweats, and other traditional ceremonies—in 1986. He has practiced his Native ways and has been sober for 32 years.
 
Today, Myron tries his best to help people find the path to a better life. He takes many young people under his wing. He introduces them to ceremonies, the importance of tradition, and God.
 
"Spirituality to me is honoring that spirit of life given to you by being one with it, showing it respect, and passing it on," Myron said.

 
 

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