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Some time ago I was seated among some brothers at lunch.  Ken, who frequently pours water (officiates sweat loge ceremonies) for our group, was sat down with his bottle of pop.  As the man has let us know that he is diabetic another brother asks him how he can justify drinking a “sugared” pop.  The first man’s answer was, “I don’t have to.”

I do know that Ken took responsibility for his well being and that he knows how sugar works in his system.  He took responsibility for himself and needn’t justify his behavior – it impacts him only and not others.

Many times I seek to justify what I do to others around me when it’s not necessary.  It doesn’t affect others.

In relation to others I choose to be accountable for any agreements I make with them.  If I have agreed to do or not do something or behave in a particular manner while among them, then I accept that the others may hold me to account. It affects the cohesiveness of the community.

However, I have found myself, over the years, attempting to justify myself to parents, other family members and the community. 

How I feel, what I like or don’t like, privacy boundaries, my creativity, my spirit, and my gifts – I want to know that these are OK.

The mistake I make is that thinking I need to be ok to others.

I have to be ok with me before I can work on relationships with others.

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