As you know starting something is a real journey… there’s a lot to learn and much evolution. The very nature of it is to take one step at a time into the future, a most elusive place such that even when one finds it with the new day it is no longer the future but the present made from yesterday’s choices, our past. All this is to say, the mission is progressing but this round of updates is of the one-step back in nature.
The partnership that we’ve been nourishing since January with a fellow sister in the mission of catalyzing change throughout Indian Country with self-defense has been put on hold for now. My wish for that relationship was pure synergy that allowed each of us to save time and get to the critical needs of the 568+ nations most effectively. The Tour of Hope was to begin this month under the direct training and program rollout of that partnership. However, the timing is not right for this and so Jilly and I will be spending the next 16 weeks training, based in San Diego, in various martial art and defense forms and building a program from the ground up; one that fits the needs of our people. It’s just what must be done. My RAD training you might ask… yes, it is good experience, but it can’t be taken to reservations as it is. As many have wisely said in one way or another, Slow is smooth, smooth is fast, (this one, Jocko Willink).
Also as our Jamaican brothers and sisters say, “There are no worries, only situations.” In leading up to this decision many signs showed us this would be the way, and so I have no worries. Only the continued determination to discern the subtle hints better, choosing the better way faster, before having to get smacked in the face with it. Leading up to this particular reality smack, we were introduced to a true hero and local leader; a few weeks before the launch she came to know us and offered to help us in any way she can… she’s a martial arts baller, trained under the late Grandmaster James Wilson. Her self-defense based curriculums are now being taught throughout the higher education systems throughout San Diego County. Now, she’s our Miyagi and will be training us over the next 4 months as well as guiding us along the path of a perfect curriculum for our people. Another mentor and great leader among the people said to me, “You do it, You can do this! As someone with two 501c3’s to wrap you under, You do it.” I’d be a real stubborn, hypocritical fool not to take see these helping hands for what they are, true blessings to be accepted and honored.
While I’m disappointed not to be out on the road, meeting each community where they are right now, the need as urgent as it is, I understand why we must catch the fire here in San Diego, where all signs continue to point and where leaders and their communities graciously extend their hands for me to grab onto during this time as a baby activist with a seedling program. We can grow here, taking exactly the time that’s needed to nurture this mission, build a strong foundation, and get it done right.
Our continued work and success is truly the gift of family and friends we’ve met along the way who believe. May everyone do what they love and love what they do with at least one person in their corner to help them along – for me and this mission, it continues to make all the difference.