The power of our intention is great, is bigger than all else. Using it wisely indeed does pay off.
This is not the typical writing that I have done of late.
This is different because against all odds, I was awarded a scholarship this past weekend. I was not expecting it to be what it was, and it was happily received.
I did not need anyone there to be with me, but he showed up. And suddenly it made all the difference in the world. If you knew what we had gone through, you would understand what is meant by “he is very tired.” He was there.
It made all the difference in the world.
I was not thinking that it was such a big fat deal, but, as the morning went on, it began to take on a very different energy – I had never been honored in such a way, ever, and never in my life had I had the evidence of what adhering to oneʻs own personal Kuleana was all about until I saw my name on the screen in big letters so everyone in that auditorium could also see.
I still have no idea what it is that I am feeling other than gratitude and accomplishment, and that is where I will start…
MALAMA ANA is the phrase that I am thinking is closest to what I think is the translation for accomplishment. I really do not know. I would have to ask my Auntie Stephanie. Doesnʻt matter.
This photo was taken this past Saturday, June 10, 2017. Itʻs kind of grainy (because I do not have one of those super cool and grooy type phones that can run your life for you if you let it). These two young women are also recipients of scholarship monies – and I am positive, because I sat listening to the announcer stating the reasons why weʻd been awarded…
It had nothing to do with more than hard work.
Nothing to do with our Maoli status, and nothing to do with people giving a break to people who are not exactly …colonial in any manner or matter at all. This photograph tells the world that we did what we were taught to do, and we did so with the greatest measure of Aloha and Kuleana for no one else but our very selves, our personal selves.
Mekemeke, Ruth and I did not get these awards because of our place as Maoli women – we were awarded these monies because we are very hard working, intelligent, deserving Maoli women, thatʻs why.
I can sit here now, after all the years of being told that the only reason that anyone would offer any kind of anything cool like a scholarship has every and only to do with our native origins. While that would be very cool, that is not what this was about.
Our school does not offer a Polynesian awards – only awards for having the ability to rise above life circumstance, and still make the grades, still be involved and still be a part of rather than apart from oneʻs life, not only as students, but as women…as humans.
To my fellow award winners….specifically the two in this photo with me…
Thanks for all of the love, and all of the support.
Thank you all for cheering us on, and thank you for not ever letting us think, ever, that we, as Maoli, were not able, via our athletic ability, or yeah….our way out frikkin akamai-ness…thank you for believing in us…
Thank you for making certain that we always believed in ourselves….
Mekemeke and Ruth…we are only schoolmates, but, because of our culture, we are also hanai ohana.
From this particular Los Angeles Auntie on the 9th, to you both, know now that the smile that is on my face is not only because I actually won something cool, but because it is my madness in this lifetime to make it known, not just to the other island folks on the 9th, but primarily to the young wahine on the mainland, who might be very far away from home and who, for the life of them, have no real idea what it is to see in their hands the evidence of their own greatness.
It is important that we, as these scholars, not only never forget that this is what we are, what we have been chosen as – NA MAMO…the descendants- but more, that we also never forget that the entire world of Maoli women, even if that world is only encased by the acreage called Mount San Antonio College in Walnut, CA…so be it – it is our Kuleana …our Soulʻs Responsibility….to wear the light of ourselves.
Yes, so the world can see through the veneer that it has chosen to see us through, the dusty lens that is not the real or the organic truth of us, not only as these scholars, neither these Maoli women, but mostly, as human beings here, experiencing all these things, comparing it all to what we have been told all of our lives is the collective thought about who we are, for real.
I know that every year, plenty of people on this planet are awarded with money for school.
Yet, when you have been told your entire life long that you are lolo, that you are lucky that you can cook and that you are pretty and that at least you can teach other people that thing called (ugh) the “hula hula”….none of that matters anymore, because someone who does not know you personally, and someone who only knows your story, your GPA, your locality, the idea that you are involved at school and in your community…someone who does not know you, or maybe does not know you very well, believes in you, in us.
Lots of people are awarded scholarship money, I know, but not a lot of people can say these words, write these words, mean these words, and not a lot of people who are not Maoli – namely this Maoli Auntie writing these words…are going to know exactly the importance of what it is that we have accomplished not only for ourselves, but, for our people.
Yes…think that way for a moment if you would, please.
You are the shining example of what is that thing …that thing called hard work. We were granted Nā mea hoʻohana – the very tools needed, in order to do this, by the gods and the goddesses and by the very ʻAumakua who we each and all go to in times of prayer and trial…
To you both…congratulations for being very hard working, very good, very intelligent Island women….and thank you for being the model of who and what we each and all possess as those island women, knowing full and well the moment that you heard your name, as much as it was for me, one of those moments….
…one of those moments that we, the very all of us as humans, end up experiencing from time to time…With all the lights, and the crowd, and the cheering of your name as you graced the stage for that moment….
Rock Star moments rule…right?
Mahalo to all those people who believed in us, and more, to those people who didnʻt…
It is because you fueled the fire, those who did not, and made it so that Madame Pele would rear her head in the each of us, show you what itʻs like to make a fire, then show you what it is like to dance around it as you watch, wishing you could join…
These young women, and even that old one, in this photo are physical evidence that we, as Maoli people, are able to become that which we have been told is not for us, is what we are to loathe, is….somehow….colonial…and it ainʻt…
Itʻs called beating them at their own game….
Think that way for once please….
I gotta study….got finals this week…
Mekemeke….Ruth….you two girls….congrats!
FROM THIS 9TH ISLAND AUNTIE!!! YOU ROCK AND RULE !!!
You deserve it !