As I started the process of beading the “215”, I was reminded of the day when they first announced that the children had been recovered in Kamloops. It didn’t come as a surprise to those of us who listened to survivor stories but it still hit a spectrum of emotions all the same. So much was stolen through the residential “schools”, the loss is incomprehensible. So many Indigenous languages are now bordering on extinction as a result.
My small act of resistance to this was to start counting my beads in Kanienkeha, to start infusing the language into our daily lives. I am listening to songs in the language as my little one plays at my feet. I am making sure that his little ears are tuned into the language of his ancestors. This is how I am choosing to honour the children. By making sure that my child is never denied the opportunities that the ones before him never had.