By Brigette Fleming
It was our third day of the leadership camp. We got to do an archery contest, and I took 4th place. Today we talked about our goals for our lives. We had to choose which goal was the most important for us, which was actually pretty difficult. We also did some fun activities. One of our activities that I really enjoyed was a beach ball toss. We basically tried to keep a beach ball up in the air, and we learned more about each other by saying things that we like as we kept the beach ball aloft.
After the camp, we headed to the Kyle Youth Center. Nyla and David Swallow showed and demonstrated to us about natural Lakota medicines. It was really interesting to learn about the uses of plants as medicine and what ailments they can help. It was especially interesting because we only really hear about medicine that’s used in hospitals, not about more natural practices. David also drummed for us as we did a traditional a round dance, which was really interesting. After that, we headed back to the camp and learned how to construct sage bundles. That was one of my favorite parts of the day because we learned a lot about Lakota culture and we got something cool to take home.
The last thing that we did today was go to ride horses at a farm. The horse I rode was named Dot. Honestly, at first I was a little scared because I thought that I might fall off. After riding for a little bit, I felt more comfortable and I had a lot of fun! We got to watch them break two horses, which was especially exciting. Then we watched them race four horses.
All in all, this was one of my favorite days at Pine Ridge so far. Before this trip, I was intimidated by a lot of the people who I’ve sat next to for the past nine months. Coming to Pine Ridge has allowed us to create and strengthen bonds with all of our classmates, and I am beyond happy that I choose to come.