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Madonna Swan: A Lakota Woman’s Story

1106 words - 4 pages

In the book Madonna Swan: A Lakota Woman's Story, written by Mark St. Pierre, the true strength of a woman's soul is reveled. In her stories I was able to capture the essence of her life. She had overcome many trials and tribulations. Of which these included her loss of many family members, and loved ones, fight with tuberculosis, and overcoming the doubts of people around her. Throughout her life she had learned to accept what was happening to her, and yet she still hung on. As stated in one of the stories "So you see, when things are hard for us, we are being tested. We have to overcome the difficulty and go on, no matter how hard it seems right then." (pg 32)

        While reading Madonna Swan: A Lakota Woman's Story, I was completely amazed of how she was able to carry on her life. At the turn of almost every page was another thing bad happening to her, but she kept going. Madonna Swan was the type of woman almost everyone strives to be. She was honest, caring, loving and willing to learn from every situation.

        Starting from when Madonna Swan was a little girl, her family played a huge role in her life. One family member in particular was her Grandmother Julia. Grandma Julia had passed on many different tales of the life before she was born. She told her about her mother growing up, and the different situations they had experienced together. Her Grandmother had a very influential being around her. If she felt any doubts about anything she would pray to the grandfathers. This is just one of the many traits she had passed on to Madonna Swan.

        When a young woman reaches her special time, they are celebrated. This ceremony is very special among Indians. When Madonna Swan was going through this, she spent the whole time with her grandmother and mother in the tipi. Her grandmother had told her "Within these days you are not to have a bad disposition or think bad thoughts about anyone or anything. Try to be happy and not get angry or else that will also be your way in life." I think by what her grandmother told her that day is the way Madonna Swan looked and lived the rest of her life. (pg41)
She was taught during this time the skills of sewing, cooking and cleaning. The skills she had learned over those days would carry on and help her later on in life. One thing I picked up was the her grandmother had taught her to remain busy and always look for the best situation. While Madonna Swan was suffering from tuberculosis, and was in the snaitorium, she was constantly helping. When she was feeling okay her self she would help out the other girls. This is where Madonna Swan shows how unselfish she was. If she really wanted to she could have sat around and felt sorry for herself. She could have let the disease conquer her,...

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