Deb Haaland Sworn in as the First Native American Cabinet Head

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Deb Haaland Sworn in as the First Native American Cabinet Head

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Photos of Deb Haaland proudly wearing the ribbon skirt I designed for her brings me so many emotions that are difficult to describe.It is such an honor to see an Indigenous woman be sworn in as the first Native American Cabinet head. Deb Haaland is such a gracious, humble, and compassionate leader who exemplifies all the teachings that are pretty universal for Indigenous Peoples. The teachings of love, kindness, humility, honesty, truthfulness and courage can be felt every time someone meets Deb or each time we see her speak.
Today not just as a ribbon skirt maker but as an Indigenous woman….I feel SO SEEN.
I know that feeling echoes tremendously with relatives all across Turtle Island. I am so proud to have been a part of this historic moment in some way. Thank you and shoutout to my friends Margaret Gonzalez and Shane Balkowitsch for asking me to make her a ribbonskirt.
The ribbon skirt reminds us of the matriarchal power we carry as Indigenous women.
They carry stories of survival, resilience, adaption, and sacredness.
As survivors of genocide we wear our ribbon skirts to stay grounded in our teachings, to stay connected to the earth and our ancestors.
Wearing it in this day and age is an act of self empowerment and reclamation of who we are and that gives us the opportunity to proudly make bold statements in front of others who sometimes refuse to see us.
It allows us to be our authentic selves unapologetically.
This is extremely important to me because when I was a little girl, the hate and racism I experienced as a First Nations person left me feeling shame.
As the daughter of a Residential school survivor and a Sixties scoop survivor, sewing ribbon skirts has brought so much healing to my life. Expressing myself in a cultural and creative way that allows me to feel the strength of my ancestors has given me the space I needed to shed that shame I carried.
Sewing is my love language.

Extremely honored ~ Agnes Woodward @agneswoodward
#ribbonskirts #ribbonskirt #IndigenouswomenEmpowered #DebHaaland #MatriarchalPower

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This item was submitted on March 21, 2021 by Dana Bell using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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