Happy Birthday Old Man!

Before I write my next post (and I know it has been a while), I want to give a great big shout out to my old man on his 65th birthday today! He will likely never see this post, as I have stated before he is not down with the technology, but at least everyone else can see how awesome I think he is.

Tommy Timber is 2 months away from retirement, and as of January 2018 gets to spend all of his time with my mama, his dog Rylee, and his new granddaughter Kinsley. He has told me over the past couple months that he could likely get a part time job at Home Depot, where all old retired people go to work part time ( only he would actually know what he is talking about), or work part time as a Wal-Mart greeter. Both would be equally hilarious.

I am so thankful for my dad for the past 34 years. He was my first ever best friend, and my first ever hero I ever looked up to. He gave me a good gauge of what both should look and act like, which makes me so grateful, thankful, and fortunate to have the friends and mentors I do have and have had in my life.

Knowing that many kids don’t grow up with their fathers, or their fathers are not in the picture makes me even more grateful knowing that someone out there picked this man to be mine, and I do not take a single moment of it for granted.

Enjoy your day with all of your girls, and JD too!

Love ya old man,

Adam

 

“…And if she had to live it all over again, you know she wouldn’t change anything for the world.”

I have been out of this whole writing thing for the past month now or so and as I always do, like a good Canadian, I will apologize relentlessly until you accept my apology. 🙂 I just finished exams and was on a vacation so naturally I did not feel like writing; I needed a break and I needed home, and I needed my family. But now I am here and now I am back; I have a whole list of new people to add to my already lengthy list. Some of these people I have met on my journeys, some I have not but regardless they continue to be heroes to me and to some other people as well.

I had been home almost a week and decided to watch an episode of The Therapist on Vice; specifically Laura Jane Grace, the frontwoman for Against Me! I first heard her amazing voice I think it 2009? I was lucky enough to see my favorite band Foo Fighters, and Against Me! opened for them. I went with my good friend TLP and Against Me! was already playing when we got there. Usually the band before the main act is average depending, but right away I was hooked. I know they definitely played STOP! and Thrash Unreal, and maybe one other song. This was before Laura Jane had announced to the world what she had known her whole life; she was transgender. I want to apologize yet again to the trans community and otherwise if I use the language or terms incorrectly; I’m still learning. Anyways, so I watched the episode of The Therapist with Laura Jane Grace and was blown away! I watched a few other episodes, but found this one to be the most “real” and inspiring; not because she was necessarily doing well, completely happy and living a seemingly easy life. It was actually the exact opposite at least in my eyes. To me, it looked as though she was quite sad, depressed, still trying to work out happiness; but she was completely and authentically herself. The most authentic I feel I have ever seen a person be. It was beautiful in a really heartbreaking way. Now she is truly becoming and being who she was meant to be, but with that carries a large amount of hurt and baggage with it I would assume. It is not very often you can feel real life pain through the screen of a tv or computer, but wow.

Gender Dysphoria is something that has come more to light in recent years, some people have been quick to negatively judge, others have been more empathetic. For me, as I mentioned above, if people are being their true authentic self, who am I to judge negatively or at all for that matter.  There was a time in life I know I would have judged, but with age you become wiser I guess or something?

Anyways, I am not going to go on and on in regards to this topic because I am in no means an expert, merely an ally of authenticity.

Sometimes I think that for someone to be who they really are, it comes with a lot of pain, a lot of hard work, a lot of sacrifice, a lot of second and third and fourth guessing yourself. Whether a person is straight, or gay, or trans or whatever label you decide to put or not put to it; being who you really are, the realest version of yourself will always come at a cost. Really though, isn’t it better to be who you really are and be miserable and in pain for a moment in time or maybe even long term instead of pretending to be the opposite? to be a fake, putting on that smile pretending everything is okay (sounds exhausting to me). I think for all of us, we should be continually looking for that moment to express “this is who the f*ck I am, deal with it or don’t”. Tough times don’t last, tough people do man! Everyone has some stuff they have to unpack once in a while or maybe quite often.

So this week for being a source of courage, showing what true bravery looks like, for rescuing herself, for trying to love herself, for attempting to outwork the doubt, for finding hope, and for living through it all as her authentic self (pain and all), Laura Jane Grace is my hero this week. Thank you for reminding to be myself at all costs, and to be empathetic in listening to others while they try to find themselves.

Thank-you for being a voice, for your voice and for putting it to music.

Your Bawd,

Drisc

 

Dear MYS:

Happy Belated 25th Birthday! As I sat at the party you had in Thompson to celebrate, and afterwards as well, I had time to reflect and think about all the good you have brought into my life.

I have been a part of your organization since 2010, and continue to be a large supporter in what you do for families, but especially kids.  I know that there are many people, especially in the north that work for your company that certainly do not do the job that they do for the financial gain, but rather because of the need and out of love.  People stay employed with MYS, especially in the north because of the people who work there. Many of these people devote large portions of their own personal time to their career, while asking for nothing in return but ensuring that the youth in which they work with are safe. Some of the most humble, selfless, and giving people work for MYS and I would like to highlight many of these people in this post, not by name but by talking of them and thanking them for the past 7 years of my life.

I would have to start from the very beginning, receiving my very first call for a phone interview; me in North Bay, Ontario and them in Thompson, Manitoba. I was interviewed by two ladies from the agency, one who would become my boss, one who would become my case manager for foster care; both who would become very influential friends.  They took a shot on me without even meeting me in person, giving me the opportunity to prove myself.  I am so grateful for that opportunity, because it allowed me to meet many great friends, and great clients who have since become friends; the opportunity allowed me to learn about culture, deal with, face, and overcome grief and great loss, and point me in the direction to “my purpose” which I had been looking for since before moving here. And when the time came to move on, one of those ladies even told me “Go! go take that job, I don’t want you to, but its a great opportunity, you need to!” and then gave me a boot is the ass out the door ( she didn’t really). Thank you ladies for taking a shot on me.

One of the first people I became tight with at MYS was also the guy that wanted the same job that I got.  Now he could have been upset (I know he was), and he could have taken it out on me, but he never did.  Instead he got to know me as a person, and decided that he was going to help me and befriend me instead.  That is just the type of guy that he is, selfless even when things do not go his way.  I’ve honestly never seen a guy more devoted to the group of young men which he worked with.  He is tough but fair, and when he has to be sensitive he can put on that hat too.  If you come to Thompson just listen very carefully and you might be able to hear him laugh. lol his laugh is loud and genuine, you cant mistake it for anyone else’s.  I got to hear him speak this year at our annual MYS appreciation dinner, where he publicly recognized working with me; it was hard to keep it together.  This is a guy who introduced me and taught me how to interact with indigenous people, how to show respect, and even got me a spot as the “token white boy” on his hockey team the first year I moved here; a guy who introduced me to his family, and to his old man ( who I swear is the brown version of my dad), and said that it was a sign of respect to call his dad “dickhead” in cree. lol.  We now refer to each other as “bro”, and I am proud to call you my friend brother. Thank you for welcoming me into your world and family and making me feel a part of it; I appreciate you and everything you have done for me over the past 7 years has not gone unnoticed.

Next I have to talk about two ladies, one that has basically been a mom to the kids she works with and the other a grandmother.  Though she has since taken a different position with the organization, I know that she secretly misses the boys she was the supervisor of at the group home.  She spent much of her time and energy making sure that all of the boys had her to yell at, to make fun of, to talk to, for her to put them in their place when it needed to happen, but most of all to have her to be a strong mother figure in their lives at a time when they needed it the most being away from their families. She has always been a huge supporter of mine as well over the years and continues to be, just like she has continued to be for the kids and parents in her new role. Thank you for being a mom to other peoples kids when they needed it the most and thank you for helping me see that the kids always come first.  The next lady is the grandmother figure at MYS and you cannot talk about MYS in Thompson without mentioning her. She is in her 70’s but moves and acts like she’s a lady in her early 40’s.  She is originally from my neck of the woods in Ontario but has been in Thompson now for over 40 years! She owns a burger joint just outside of town and her burgers and fries are delicious! In the winter she works at the boys group home and cooks them delicious meals as well; no kid has ever messed with her. She can hold her own over almost any worker, and is petite French sweet lady who the boys she works with love but even more so respect. Thank you for teaching me how important it is to stay young at heart.

To the man who runs the Thompson MYS show. Often facing many symptoms of anxiety to show appreciation and support for his employees when he gets in front of them with a microphone. Thank you for showing a guy who also gets anxiety in front of large crowds that it is better to face your fear than to always stay fearful. A guy who has always gone to bat for me over the years, whether it be as a supervisor, as a respite worker, and now as a foster parent. A guy who works relentlessly hard, but who is also able to rely on his supporting cast and often gives them most of the credit while he stays behind the scenes grinding. When I said that I wanted to become a full time single foster dad, while also working full time, you found a way to make it work and put your trust in me that I could handle it all.  Thank you for your friendship, the opportunity to succeed or fail, constant words of encouragement, and your “hustle”. It’s not surprising, it runs in your family; but I appreciate everything nonetheless.

To the foster mom that I feel was once was really tough on me ( for like maybe the first couple of years). Thank you for that toughness. I know it was likely hard in the beginning in putting some sort of faith in a chubby bearded dude to take care of your 7 year old daughter, and eventually your little boy.  Now things have changed a lot over the past 6-7 years and I love your kids as if they were my own. They have provided me with many moments of laughter and happiness just by being in their presence.  You have raised them to be thoughtful, loving, caring young people mixed in with the perfect amount of crazy.  I don’t get to see them as much as I would like to anymore, but thank you for always letting me take them when I’m feeling angry, or sad, or just need to get happy in general. Thank you for including me in a tiny part of raising your kids; because you gave me the opportunity, they have brought so much happiness into my life; I am so grateful for that.

To a former MYS employee, my ukranian mother ( or sister, because she thinks she is too young to be my momma).  Thank you for always including me in your family traditions and dinners, and constant support in and out of the workplace.  It is always hard during the holidays to be so far from home, and you are always the first one to welcome me into your home, and send me home with enough food for the next week. Now you are the lady that mostly chirps me about hockey all year long, but I secretly like it. Thank you for welcoming me into your family, for the opportunity to coach your daughter, and for the opportunity to drink Ken’s liquor during the holidays. Oh, and for being my much older “sister” lol.

To another former MYS employee turned counsellor. A lady who has always been so good at connecting with the youth through lived experience and through building meaningful relationships. Seeing you so easily connect with kids and laugh and joke with them has always been something I remember about you and thinking “i want to be that kinda person”.  Getting to visit our old friend in Wasagamack,  I was so glad that I was able to do it with you.  Knowing the lengths that you will go for your students, and for your clients to succeed and to feel loved and wanted, is something I strive for and to be because of you. Thank you for showing me that sometimes you have to step outside of the box and go the extra mile for the people and kids who need and deserve it the most.

To everyone else from MYS that I have forgotten I am sorry, I know I am missing people. To the office staff past and present, thank you for all of your help and being a sounding board for when I angry, frustrated,  or upset about something. To Hammy and the soon momma to be ( I said I wouldn’t use names), thank you for getting me out and meeting people when I first moved here, to the amazing support today with things that I am involved in, you are involved in, or we are involved in or with together. Again I know I missed people, but its getting long and late and your are all in my thoughts I swear.

Finally, to every single kid I have ever worked with or continue to work with through MYS today; and to those that have passed on before their time. Some of you have become or were my very good friends; many of you were and/or continue to be great sources of my happiness; many of you living continue to struggle, fight, and hope for a better life and circumstances every single day. You are my heroes and I love you. We have laughed together, been angry together, sad together and grieved together. I am so grateful for all of you who continue to be in my life, who message me, or call me, or show love in person; the ones who call for money, the ones who call because they need a listening ear to cry to, or to tell exciting news to. You are my family and I love you, and don’t ever give up. I came here at 26 years old, and now at 33 I want you to know that above all, you kids (most now adults) have given me the one thing I was missing and searching for so badly: PURPOSE.  Thank you for helping me find it and for being my purpose.

Congratulations MYS, thank you for all of these wonderful people, and thank you for giving me the opportunity to find my purpose.

Love,

Drisc

 

 

Like My Old Man.

  Just wanted to send a huge Happy Fathers Day to my old man and the inspiration for this blog, Tommy Timber aka- boom boom, tom Domi, tie driscoll, major Tom , etc… and soon to be Grandpa Tommy. You understand why I live where I do and do what I do, and I love you for that. I know how fortunate I am to have had a dad like you for these first 34 years of my life, and won’t ever take for granted the time we will have together over the next 34. You’re my hero, love you old man, Adam xo                                                   https://youtu.be/T_uGcW-v5EI  

I Will Hold Your Hand, and Watch the World Spin Madly Around; This Life We’re in…xo

Dear Baby K,

I haven’t met you yet, but I dream about you all of the time.

You would think that I would only dream about you if you were my own kid soon to be born, but you’re my brothers. Regardless, it doesn’t matter; I have loved you since the moment I knew you existed, if its possible I loved you even before that.

I have had some pretty good practice over the past several years at being an uncle, though its a bit different when you become an uncle by blood. Here are a few things I want you to know I will do for you for your entire lifetime. I am sure there are more, but here is the start:

  • I will take a gun course, buy a gun and never use it; I will only take it out when your dad needs backup when you bring your first date and/or boyfriend/girlfriend over to meet the family. I will clean it when you walk in with them; don’t be angry or embarrassed by us. We will help you weed out the bad ones.
  • I will always play with you, read to you, laugh with you, sing and dance with or for you. I don’t care who is watching or what they think.
  • I will take naps with you when you don’t want to sleep. Uncle Adam loves naps.
  • I will learn to do your hair, but don’t be angry if it looks terrible.
  • I will play dress up, I will have pretend tea parties, I will play along whenever you use your imagination, and I will always carry your backpack when it is heavy, no matter what color it is.
  • I will always spoil you, maybe even more than your grandparents on my side of the family, because your grandma is pretty cheap.
  • I will let you get away with things your parents would never let you get away with.
  • I will take you on awesome adventures to the park, to the beach; you name it and we will go.
  • I will give wicked awesome piggyback rides, will swing you around, and play games like hide and seek, grounder, and various forms of tag with you; sometimes I will let you win, sometimes I will try hard to win.
  • I will introduce you to the Foo Fighters and other good, older music to steer you away from the junk that will be playing on the radio when you are born and over the next several years.
  • I will give you your first beer and drink your first beer with you behind your parents back. I will listen to you tell me about sneaking out of your house to party and wont rat you out. I will tell you about stupid crap I did with my friends when I was your age.
  • I will always save the best and longest hugs for you. When you become a teenager, you will have attitude and try to get away from the hugs, but too bad deal with it!
  • I will help teach you how to skate, and also how to take wicked clappers, snappers and wristers.
  • I will attend as many school or extra curricular functions of yours that I am able to, and spoil you after.
  • I will teach you that “Like a Girl” is an empowering phrase and to be confident in yourself  and your abilities always.
  • I will spoil you, but I wont let you become someone who acts spoiled. You will eventually have to earn me spoiling you.
  • I will teach you to give back to and help people who help you, to people less fortunate, to meaningful non-profit organizations, or anyone you see that is in need.
  • I will teach you to see both sides of an argument before forming an opinion, and not to follow social media as a form of legitimate news.
  • I will take your side when you argue with your parents, but only if you actually have a good case; otherwise, you are on your own.
  • I will not let you accept participation trophies ever. You don’t get awards for just showing up, you get them for hard work, resilience, perseverance and excellence in whatever it may be.
  • I will always have your back. I will break through walls, I will take a bullet, I will go through hell, so you never have to.

And Finally,

  • The love I mentioned at the start of this letter. That love is forever. No matter the circumstance, it will never waiver, or expire and will only become stronger for you as I watch you learn and grow and become something and someone amazing.

One more Month!

Love You Baby K-boo and my future Wing-Girl,

Uncle Adam

aka- Best.Uncle.Ever.

aka- Funcle

 

 

Truth & Reconciliation: Starting on an Individual Level; The Follow Through.

I apologize for the delay in writing, I swear I have an entire list made of people to talk about, though want to attend to the completion of my 10 chosen calls to action first. Many of these will be ongoing processes to completion, and may never ever be completed or fully do these Calls to Action justice, but this will be my way to at least start conversation and change in the smallest of ways. I have 5 of the calls to action noted below and will explain how I have worked on these as a start, along with my opinions to some of them as well. You may have a differing opinion on what I may have to say, and that is perfectly okay, but please keep the opinions respectful if you share them and if you are not able to be respectful please keep them to yourself. Enjoy!

23. iii. Provide cultural competency training for all healthcare professionals.

I have been lucky enough to live and work in a region that is quite diverse in its population. This includes a wide assortment of white folks from all over the country and from various cultural backgrounds, newcomers to the country, and various indigenous peoples from different nations, cultures, languages and dialects. In Northern Manitoba, I am the minority, with indigenous people making up a large portion of the population; which is awesome! Coming from a predominantly white/European population in Northern Ontario, it has at times been challenging, frustrating, and quite different. I say this thinking back to over 7 years ago to the person I was, in comparison to the person I am now. From a person forming opinions of people with little concept or knowledge of any other culture, to someone who today is continually learning about not just indigenous culture, but other people in general. It is difficult to form an opinion when you have been only taught one side of a story over the course of your education.

I am lucky today to have a workplace that has implemented indigenous cultural competency training, put together by indigenous people and presented by them as well. People with lived experience, able to tell factual stories of how everything came about; the good, the bad and the straight up ugly; and done in a way not to put forth blame on the people today but rather give opportunity for education and bring all people closer together in reconciliation and in moving forward in a good way, while being able to learn from the past. I am also fortunate to have been able to learn from various indigenous educators and friends through asking questions and being open to learn but primarily just listen. Listening has totally changed my life, learning as well. I sat and read the first module of my first online course in Indigenous Social Work from Laurentian University. It was basically the entire history of Canada up until now; from the indigenous perspective. The real, factual history. I sat and bawled my face off at home, thinking “why did nobody teach me this”. I thought I had learned everything; how arrogant of me, but also how humbling. Teaching each other about each other is a giant step to empathy, understanding, forgiveness and reconciliation.

38. We call upon the federal, provincial, territorial, and Aboriginal governments to commit to eliminating the overrepresentation of Aboriginal youth in custody over the next decade.

I don’t know if I have much of an impact in this section. My goal here is to do my part on an individual level to help reduce the representation on indigenous youth in custody. I have worked with the youth in Northern Manitoba for over 7 years, but I am not sure that the work I have done has helped decrease this number. I want to say I hope it has. Whether it has been through working in group homes, through out in the wilderness with groups of youth, through respite work, through assessment and crisis services with youth , their families, caregivers and supports, and now through foster parenting. I hope that what I do has a lasting positive impact on the youth I engage with and that they feel confident enough to steer themselves in the right direction and ultimately make choices that lead to happiness in life, instead of becoming a statistic in the criminal justice system. If you can leave a positive lasting impression on a young indigenous youth, I believe they carry that with them regardless of where you come from, what you look like, and so on and so forth and you just hope that they make choices leading down the good path, the right path for them.

48. We call upon the church parties to the Settlement Agreement, and all other faith groups and interfaith social justice groups in Canada who have not already done so, to formally adopt and comply with the principles, norms, and standards of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as a framework for reconciliation. This would include, but not be limited to, the following commitments:

ii. Respecting Indigenous peoples’ right to self-determination in spiritual matters, including the right to practise, develop, and teach their own spiritual and religious traditions, customs, and ceremonies, consistent with Article 12:1 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

I am not a church party, nor am I a faith group, but I think this call to action can be accomplished with or without the involvement of them. I think this section is extremely important and does relate to what I had just mentioned in regards to youth in custody/criminal justice system. If the youth you are working with show an interest or voice an interest in their culture, traditions, customs, ceremonies, then make sure to find the right indigenous people, leaders, elders for them to connect with and engage with. Even if a youth does not voice an opinion on the topic, find the right people to expose them to it, in all of the various forms and see if the youth connects. This is something I will be working on in my home as I continue to take in teenagers from all walks of life, from various cultures. It is important that indigenous youth especially engage in their culture and traditions, as taught by their people; much of this was taken away throughout history and it is time to make it right.

63. We call upon the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada to maintain an annual commitment to Aboriginal education issues, including:

 iii. Building student capacity for intercultural understanding, empathy, and mutual respect.

I love this one because as I had mentioned before, being a student again has brought me to this place of intercultural understanding, empathy and mutual respect. I don’t think it just stops in being a student though; the learning never really stops and there is so much to learn, on both sides though at this moment it is important to focus on the indigenous side of history, as the euro view has had more than enough time.

I feel it is important to have indigenous culture and studies in all Canadian schools, from elementary to post secondary. All Mandatory! The University of Winnipeg I believe is the first post secondary school to have done so, with amazing results and compelling reactions and comments from non-indigenous and indigenous students alike. My action is to continue to learn as a student, as a social worker in Northern Manitoba, and transfer knowledge I have received to others who may not have the access, availability or opportunity to learn through school or even life experiences.

87. We call upon all levels of government, in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, sports halls of fame, and other relevant organizations, to provide public education that tells the national story of Aboriginal athletes in history.

I am a sports guy, so this one is obviously going to be a favourite of mine to research. I don’t know that I am able to tell the story of these athletes throughout history, but I want to highlight a few that I do know of.

Carey Price- Price is the goaltender for the Montreal Canadiens, and is a member of British Columbia’s Ulkatcho First Nation. His mother Lynda is a former chief of the First Nation. Many people consider him at this point in time to be the best goaltender in the entire world! Even me, and I cannot stand the Canadiens!

Reggie Leach aka- “The Riverton Rifle”- Leach is of Ojibwe ethnicity, a member of Berens River First Nation in Manitoba. Reggie played in 934 NHL games, tallying 666 points. Just a true beauty!

Stan Jonathan- I bring Stan into the fold here as the third NHL’er because he was just a pure beauty as well. I also brought him into the fold because there were several occasions where he and my uncle Peter Driscoll dropped the gloves and settled some scores on the ice. Both big tough dudes, and Stan played for my beloved Bruins. He is Tuscarora, born in Ohsweken Ontario, a six nations reserve near Brantford, Ontario.

OK, that’s it for now, I know I only focused on hockey I n the last section, but there are s many more great indigenous athletes from all over Canada that have significantly contributed to this country both in and out of their respective sports. I will list some more to check out and then that’s it for now.

-Jordan Tootoo, Ted Nolan, Clara Hughes, Theo Fleury, Jordan Nolan, Tom Longboat, George Armstrong, Jonathan Cheechoo, Rene Bourque, Wayne Bourque, Sharon Bruneau, Wade Redden, Bryan Trottier…..etc.

 

Your Bawd,

Drisc

 

Truth and Reconciliation: Starting on an Individual Level.

 

Now, I said I was going to pick 10 of the calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada and make them my own. I haven’t exactly figured out how I am going to do that yet, but I will soon. As you read the list of calls to action I have selected, you will see many of them are directed at the government. Within these, there is an ability for all of us as Canadians to start following through with these actions on the ground, on the frontlines, in our families, in our communities, in other communities, and individually.

I have to take the next week off as I have exams all week, but once they are done I will be coming back to this and figuring out what I personally can do to step up and complete these ten calls to action, in honour of the 1st Year Anniversary of My Hero Movement, but also because I believe it is essential for us as a country to live up to these calls to action in our own way, and begin to  learn and grow as people, and reconcile with those which our country has pushed aside for hundreds of years. You and I are just as much a part of the healing and reconciliation process as anyone else. We owe it to our brothers and sisters from all nations in this country to get it right this time, for the sake of all of our people in what can be a really wonderful, diverse and prosperous country again.

My First Ten Calls Are Below. Peace and Love,

Your Bawd,

Drisc

3. We call upon all levels of government to fully implement

Jordan’s Principle.

8. We call upon the federal government to eliminate the

discrepancy in federal education funding for First Nations children being educated on reserves and those First Nations children being educated off reserves.

23. iii. Provide cultural competency training for all healthcare professionals.

34. We call upon the governments of Canada, the provinces, and territories to undertake reforms to the criminal justice system to better address the needs of offenders with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD),

including: iii. Providing community, correctional, and parole resources to maximize the ability of people with FASD to live in the community.

38. We call upon the federal, provincial, territorial, and Aboriginal governments to commit to eliminating the overrepresentation of Aboriginal youth in custody over the next decade.

45. We call upon the Government of Canada, on behalf of all Canadians, to jointly develop with Aboriginal peoples a Royal Proclamation of Reconciliation to be issued by the Crown. The proclamation would build on the Royal Proclamation of 1763 and the Treaty of Niagara of 1764, and reaffirm the nation-to-nation relationship between Aboriginal peoples and the Crown. The proclamation would include, but not be limited to, the following commitments:

iii. Renew or establish Treaty relationships based on principles of mutual recognition, mutual respect, and shared responsibility for maintaining those relationships into the future.

48. We call upon the church parties to the Settlement Agreement, and all other faith groups and interfaith

social justice groups in Canada who have not already done so, to formally adopt and comply with the principles, norms, and standards of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as a framework for reconciliation. This would include, but not be limited to, the following commitments:

ii. Respecting Indigenous peoples’ right to self-determination in spiritual matters, including the right to practise, develop, and teach their own spiritual and religious traditions, customs, and ceremonies, consistent with Article 12:1 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

iii. Engaging in ongoing public dialogue and actions to support the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

63. We call upon the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada to maintain an annual commitment to Aboriginal education issues, including:

 iii. Building student capacity for intercultural understanding, empathy, and mutual respect.

 87. We call upon all levels of government, in collaboration with Aboriginal peoples, sports halls of fame, and other relevant organizations, to provide public education that tells the national story of Aboriginal athletes in history.

 

“The Bear”

Garry Garland aka- Garebear, aka- The Bear

I had ordered this amazing medallion in the picture to be made by the amazing Lisa Muswagon from PCN/Cross Lake, but now residing in Winnipeg just before I was to travel home for Christmas 2016 and surprise my family. We got lucky and were able to meet up as I was in line struggling to make it to my second flight on the day. Her husband HellnBack was nice enough to rush it in to me, through the madness and crowds. Thanks again you guys!

When I had originally decided to ask to have the medallion made, I had a few people in mind to give it to, but in the end it was The Bear that stuck out.

There was a time that no one would dare call Garry Garland “Garebear”; that was pretty much my whole childhood. If you have never met the man, he is my best friend since, well births dad, and whether you know him or not he can/could sometimes be an imposing figure (beard or mustache or both, he is intimidating sometimes).  A lot of my childhood years were spent having Garry coach me in minor hockey or eating supper at the Garland residence (well, trying to eat while his son tried to make me laugh). Later into adolescence, our time was spent stealing a few Labbatts Blues, or whiskey and replacing it with water. We have gotten yelled at a lot from Garry for being dumbasses, and even into our thirties, for the stupid shit we sometimes continue to do.

Nowadays though, it is much easier to hang out with The Bear, or to even call him Garebear. He is getting a bit older and a bit softer now that we are “grown up” and need less straightening out.

The Garlands have a long history with my family, as well as a mutual respect. The two families grew up on the same street together in Powassan, Ontario. Garry and his twin brother Barry used to get into a whole bunch of shit with my younger uncles, especially my uncle Peter, and it usually involved them throwing each other through stuff; stories have been told of throwing each other through walls. Maybe the crap we have done isn’t so bad then eh Gar?

I have heard Garry tell many stories about my late grandfather CJ Driscoll, and the amount of respect he had for him as a person; its awesome, I wish I had gotten to spend more time with Grandpa CJ before his passing when I was 7.

I chose to give Garry the medallion and officially name it “The Bear of the Game” award for our family hockey tournament team in Powassan that gets together once a year and tries to play good hockey and party a bit; and maybe get away from some wives and kids for a weekend??? It goes to the player who is an absolute beast during any one game; only The Original Bear (Garry) gets to pick the next Bear of the Game. Its a respect thing.

Garry has been linked with Powassan Minor Hockey since I can remember. He has been coaching for decades and just recently decided to shut it down. I was able to play on Garrys teams as well as coach with Garry and it was an awesome experience. Two things I learned:

  1. When you are young and one of the better players on the team, if you get cut open on the chin and need stitches, he will keep you in he game, toss some iodine on it and tell you to get back out there ( I have the scars to prove it, though he may not remember)

2. As a coach, if you are down by a couple goals late in the third, just add an extra   player to the ice without pulling the goalie and see if you can net a goal before the refs catch you with too many men on the ice ( I have yet to see it work as of yet but it is funny to watch)

I picked Garry for the medallion and as my hero this week because he has always had my back since I was little. I’ve been best friends with his son since birth, Garry is a guy on or off the ice who demands better of you player or person. Hes not afraid to speak or raise his voice, and I respect that. He was a tough coach, and I actually always liked that in a leader; get in my face teach me to be better. Garry is old school. The iodine on the face was awesome, scars are awesome, like I wanted to leave those hockey games!

Now he’s a guy we can sit back with, have a couple Blues without stealing them from him and talk about whatever. I’ve always been made to feel like an extension of the Garland family, not just but Garry but by my second momma Jolyne, his wife as well. His son still tries to make me laugh at the dinner table, as if we were 10 years old again, and always gets yelled at for it. its like tradition now.

I am pretty lucky that over the years I have had so many great male role models to look up to, with Garry being one of them. It is pretty easy to see where I live now that there simply are not as many male role models around for the younger generation to look up to and learn respect from. Plus, Garry can grow the shit outta a beard or mustache which is awesome!

To The Bear: thanks for the years of being a great teacher, leader, role model, father figure, and all around general badass. See you in January to take back our title!

Youe Bawd,

Drisc

#GSC #FHT2018 #GSCTakeBackWhatsOurs

Garland Service Centres Win Song Below.

 

 

One Brave Night; Defeat Depression Walk.

Last post I had mentioned that In honour of the first year of MHM almost being here, that I would do two things. 1) donate to a cause or cause(s) and 2) pick 10 of 94 calls to action from the Truth and Reconciliation Comission and do/complete them in my own way.

I have completed number 1. I will participating in the Defeat Depression Walk in Thompson, MB on June 10th, 2017. I have already donated and my goal for fundraising is $1000.00. If you are able or want to donate please see the link at the end of this post.

I have also donated to an initiative called CAMH: One Brave Night, which supports mental health initiatives in Ontario, specifically near my hometown. Mark Caldwell and family have started a team for this I’m memory of their father Woody, who died by suicide. Great cause and his team has raised over $14,000. Howah! So if you are able to donate to that as well, please feel free and the link is also below.

The second thing I said I was going to do was pick ten calls to action from the TRC. I have selected a list of ten of the calls to action but left the list at work and I am off today. This means you will not catch me stepping foot into work lol.

Next week I will post the 10 calls to action, and maybe even what I will do to fulfill each of them.

In the meantime, if I have some time this weekend I will get back into writing about people. Have a couple in mind that I have been wanting to talk about for a while.

Until then,

Peace & Love,

Driscbawd

To Donate to my Defeat Depression Walk, link is below:

https://mdsc.akaraisin.com/pledge/Participant/Home.aspx?seid=14057&mid=9&pid=3172989#.WNwkF8XpIH0.facebook

For The Love of Woody Team. CAMH One Brave Night Donate Here:

http://give.camh.ca/site/TR/OBN/OneBraveNight?team_id=2973&pg=team&fr_id=1090

 

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One Year Anniversary of MHM

Ok, so I do admit I have been slacking pretty hard the past couple of months with this site and such. I do promise things will pick up again at some point. I do have a list of people that I plan on writing about, but between juggling work, dogs, sports, going back to school, and being a foster parent i’ve somehow got less time or energy to get things done? damn life always getting in the way.

Anyways, I have a couple of things I will be doing to celebrate the one year anniversary of My Hero Movement, which is fastly approaching in mid April.

  1. I will be giving to a  really worthy cause I have already chosen and will write about at a later date.
  2. I will be reading the Truth and Reconciliation Commissions Calls to Action. There are 94 Calls to action. From this, I will select 10 calls to action to start, and will get them done in my own way. I will keep an update of it on here.

 

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So, in the meantime please check out the link below to another great cause in North Bay, Ontario; “For The Love of Woody” and the challenge to end stigma through CAMH: One Brave Night. Also, stop in and see Mark at The Sub Place in North Bay and grab a sub or Gyro; no one does it better.

https://www.facebook.com/fortheloveofwoody/

http://give.camh.ca/site/PageServer?pagename=obn2017_landing

We will talk soon my friends. Your Bawd,

Drisc