For the past 15 years I have visited the annual POW WOW, which was only 30 min away. I may have missed one or two when I went on the Camino and once when I went to Germany when my brother died.
Always loved the colorful Ragalia. (I was told by one Native American whom I’d asked a few questions that these were NOT called ‘costumes.’ It takes a very long time and skill to sew them and especially all that wonderful bead work.
This year I had also fully intended to go but I had also had painful ‘issues’, again after chemo. But, I thought this may distract me. So, I took my umbrella as it looked very much like rain and walked the 5-6 blocks to our Fairgrounds where the Pow Wow was held the last couple of years.
I was a little early and so walked around the huge hall and looked at all the beautiful jewelry, paintings, blankets, good smelling grasses and sage bundles. I picked out 2 necklaces for my granddaughter and her beloved. I went to the kitchen section and was greeted by one Native American woman, whom I’ve known for years. She came out the side door, beaming and enfolded me in a big hug. “How are you?” she asked. I pointed to my blond wig and said, ‘I’m surprised you recognized me with this on.’ She answered, ‘I would recognize your beautiful smile anywhere. ‘ She gave me a cup of mint tea, from leaves she had grown herself. After a few minutes conversation I moved on.
I had not gone the whole perimeter as I had leg pain and sat on the bottom step. As I looked around I saw some more booths against the back wall and since I still had time before the Grand Entrance, I got up and went there to see their wares. A friendly Native American came toward me with a beautiful necklace but I held my hand up, smiled and said that I was sorry but simply could not afford one since I had lots of medical bills.
He asked me, what was wrong? I told him that I have cancer, now the second time. He nodded and told me, somberly that his wife too, had breast cancer and died 5 year ago. He said it was the worst but also awesome experience he’d ever had. (Awesome???) He said with their ritual and her grace, how she dealt with it. He turned and picked up something and then handed it to me. I was a long, gray feather with two smaller feathers, one yellow and one green bundled and fastened with a leather strap. He said that this was his gift to me. It was a “smudging Feather” and meant to heal. I immediately became emotional, and tears ran down my face. He took a step toward me with wide open arms and said, ‘ Come here, sister.’ Made cry more and I was so embarrassed. Here came a younger woman, also hugging me from the side, and a third one and she said, ‘this is a healing circle.’ I had told them that I had wanted to go to Santa Fe (weekend before) to try to find a Shaman. That I had wanted to visit Santa Fe for a long time and that it almost felt like a ‘pull’.
After a few minutes I had myself in better control again and he handed me a napkin. I smiled and thanked him. We exchanged a few more words and as I turned to leave, the younger woman approached me, with a Native American man in tow and told me that he was a Shaman and that he would take care of me. I said, that I had no money. ( Because I’d read in my Santa Fe research, that they could demand $300-450.00 for a session.) He shook his head and took my hand and sat me into a chair, at a little more private area.
He told me that he could see my aura, the rainbow colors and black spots which were blocking me. He took my newly acquired ‘Smudging Feather’ and waved it up and down my body, chanting in his native tongue. He stopped one time, looked at me and said, ‘your chakra is way out of line on your right side and it has been that way for quite awhile. I will try to align it.’ On went the chanting as he moved the feather from head to knees. He said, ‘oh, there is a big blockage in your leg. ‘ I said, yes, this where I have blood clots. ‘ (How could he know?) He told me he would now ‘give me over to the ‘Great Spirit’, to heal me.’ That’s when I started crying again. He too, had tears in his eyes as he looked at me and said, ‘if the Great Spirit would not be filled with love for you he would have not put you in his (Shaman’s) path.’ He told me, what a beautiful spirit I had. He asked me, if I felt the heat of his hands (which never touched me) and indeed I had. He apologized as he had had many sessions the day before and was thus weakened. I told him, that I was grateful for anything he could give me.
After about 30 min he got off his knees and asked me, if he could hug me. I totally said yes. I took the only $20.00 bill I had and handed it to him, saying that this was all I had but wanted him to have it. He thanked me big time and said, that most people didn’t even say Thank-You and that I was only the second person within those past days that had given him a GIFT. He also gave me his phone number, in case I wanted to have another session. Imagine my delight to see that he only lived 30 minutes away, and I was prepared to travel 700 miles.
I sat on the bleachers and enjoyed the rest of the program and felt very much at peace, marveling at the set of many ‘coincidences’ which had brought me there that Sunday.