A Pulse article by Nicole Colvin-Griffin

I have been part of this community since 2003.

I experience moments of sweetness and connection at our local hamlet fires and potlucks. I am nourished by the beauty of abundance during our local harvest celebrations. I feel one-on-one connection with others in a real and profound way at community events. Yet, I do not feel connected to the whole, to the big picture of this group.

I ask myself, “How can I show up more fully?”

“What can I bring forth?”

“Will my gifts truly be received?”

It is certainly easier to say something is lacking, harder to really show up. Easier to stay in a mind place of judgement.

I ask myself, “Is this community truly sustainable?”

“Does this community support families?”

Elders and youth are essential parts to a healthy community. Are these thriving arenas of our community? Are the perspectives they bring truly honored and listened to?

When my dear husband, Chris, and I started attending fires our children were quite young and came willingly to fires.  They enjoyed snuggling on laps, singing, drumming, and weaving in and out of the tipi, often falling asleep somewhere near the fiery warmth.

As they have grown, they are no longer interested in attending.  You could say there is quite an aversion, actually.  Is this just part of the natural cycle or is there something to look at here?

I know there are hamlets where there are amazing crews of young people that not only show up, but engage and bring their gifts. How can we support this in other communities in an everyday way, not only in a once a year gathering format?

I long for my children to also be with their tribe, playfully nourished, seen.   Not sitting in front of a movie or computer while we connect with others.  This doesn’t sit well in my guts, in my bones.   I know they must be woven into the fabric into the dance, while honoring their own.

I invite others to join me in sitting with these questions.  In sharing ideas, feedback, creative sparks.

I am inspired to show up. More fully, and with more dedication than I ever have before. I feel the spark in my heart. I long to feel more connected, rather than, “This isn’t really my community.” I am ready to be a voice which speaks gently yet clearly, “Simply holding each other in awareness with compassion is a start.”

Editor’s note: This letter from Nicole, a long-standing community participant, has already sparked lots of discussion and ideas, even before it was published! The Executive Directors of the Sacred Fire Community are looking into the best way to set up a forum to discuss issues around our support of children and families, and Nicole has been asked for her insight on how best to move forward with this. Do you want to be involved in this conversation? Use the comments fields for this article to let us know you’re interested in being on a call or forum.

Have you been holding concerns or kudos about the community in your heart or mind? Please contact Pulse to share your perspective with the community.