Ten & Eleven Weeks Ago

by: Keiden

Happy Halloween! It seems like since the trip to Louisiana at the beginning of the month life has just been moving fast, I’m keeping up with most of it but there are definitely some fear of drowning moments. Though I am making sure to get some quiet and relaxing time there have been a few short road trips and lots of packing and unpacking the car. In the span of one week Shannon and I went up to Pennsylvania three times, once for a wedding and twice for work. Our weekend was jam packed with a vending gig on Friday night, spending some time with chosen family Saturday night, and took Sunday off to get some much needed rest and relaxation.

At the wedding Shannon and I got to have some much needed fun and time with chosen family. I got to drum for the service with a couple of my drum brothers and we all got to drum with the groom during the reception. The music played during the reception was so good that even when I wasn’t dancing or drumming I was bobbing or tapping a foot along. We even drummed along with the DJs and it was awesome to play with everyone there. I got to dance with my wife and laughed when we realized that even if there isn’t a fire for us to dance around we still kind of dance around in a circle. It was heart warming to be at a wedding on the land where Shannon and I had our first date and the ceremony itself was in the stone circle which is where I proposed to Shannon.

Working up in Pennsylvania was a pretty sweet gig. We slept and ate well while we were there. There was a decent amount of lifting and moving things around and that kind of work always makes me feel a little bit stronger. I still haven’t gotten back into my daily stretching routine but I did manage to stretch enough to prevent my body from locking up. Not all of the work was hard labor, for a portion of the job I basically got paid to make and play with fire. I was in a happy place doing that task. I was also able to take home some scrap pieces of metal that I can’t wait to forge into pretty things.

With all the travel lately it has been awhile since I got in the dye room but I hopped in there with Shannon a couple of times this past week to dye some bandanas. I had so much fun playing with color and trying out some new folding patterns. Shannon has been really excited about experimenting with a new dye technique and got to do a few pieces trying it out. We are both really happy with how our work came out and we have some awesome new bandanas in stock. I liked one of the bandanas that Shannon dyed so much that I kept it for myself and wore it almost all weekend.

Since we’ve been home I am picking up my ukulele more, not every day but at least a couple of times in a week. I have been practicing and might even be able to play a song for you all soon. I’ve also gotten to drum my heart out twice in the past two weeks and I am looking forward to drumming for my Temple again this weekend during an Ancestor ritual. Something new I’ve noticed about my drumming is that I am less hesitant in a couple of ways. I am not as hesitant to just pick up my drum and play and as I play I am hesitating less when I slip into the rhythm. I think it has to do partly with the fact that I am feeling the progress of my skill and having a little less sensation in my hands. Something about having a little bit less sensation is allowing me to beat on the drum with a bit more confidence. I’m not sure why that is but I am not going to question it too deeply.

I got a letter from my health insurance company this week denying the prescription for the medication the doctor wants to start me on. I was warned that this was usually the case and was told that there are lots of programs that help people pay for this medicine. I am incredibly thankful that those programs exist because I certainly can’t afford medicine that costs 40-60,000 dollars a year. Since it seems like it might be a while before I start the medication I don’t really see the point in worrying about it. Every now and then there is a fleeting thought about how I am not looking forward to having needles become a part of my every day life but I don’t see the point in getting angry or upset about it right now. I have also continued to avoid doing any kinds of heavy research about MS because there is still so much unknown and time is going to be the only way to get answers for how it will play out for me.

With how busy things have been I’ve been in the “one day at a time mindset.” I am thankful every day that I wake up and can get out of bed. I am thankful for all the love and support I have been getting from friends and family and though I have to take the steps down this path on my own, I do not feel alone. I just want to thank you all for coming back here every week (or every other week this past month) to keep up with what is going on in my life. It means a lot and is part of the reason I do not feel alone on this journey.