Miquela Ibrao

Laguna Pueblo

“I am Laguna Pueblo and Quechan on my Mother’s side, Italian on my Father’s. In my Native tradition, men and women play separate but equal roles in the community. I saw some of this in my parents. My father was the major wage earner and a champion at playtime. My mother was our educator, particularly when it came to our cultures. She raised us to be truly bi-cultural: instilling in me a knowledge of her Native lands and my Father’s native tongue.

As I begin my own journey into motherhood, I reflect on my role in our new family and my duties in raising a bi-cultural child. My husband is Native Hawaiian and Filipino and I feel as much of a responsibility to honor the traditions of his ancestors as I have a duty in honoring my own. My family believes in the concept of 7-generations, that our ancestors and our future generations are connected. It is important to me that my child understands the beauty as well as the tragedy of his ancestry.

I want him to understand that he comes from strong people. Both my family and his father’s survived colonization and their strength will always be with him. I want him to teach him to be proud of his multicultural lineage.”