Delphine Red Shirt: She never partook of the 'White man's medicine'

Delphine Red Shirt. Photo by Rich Luhr / Flickr

She never partook of the ‘White man’s medicine’
On The Outside Looking In
By Delphine Red Shirt
Native Sun News Columnist

When my mother died suddenly I was sitting with her sister-in-law at the funeral talking about how my Auntie has stayed so healthy for so long. My Auntie told me that first and foremost, she “never took the white man’s medicine.” And second of all, my auntie walked everywhere she went. I looked at her, small frame and intense eyes and I believed everything she said.

Years later, when my cousin told me that my Auntie was weak, at the age of 80 plus, I didn’t want to see her, I wanted to remember her as she was, bright eyes, feisty laugh and an attitude that belies her experiences in life. How the state of Nebraska had said she was inept and took many of her children away; later they all returned to her. Or how her late husband, my uncle had converted to Christianity late in life and died forgiven for his own mistakes with alcohol.

What my Auntie said about medicine and exercise were important to someone you wouldn’t consider an expert in any way. It was what worked for her and helped her live a decade beyond my own mother who did take many different prescriptions, religiously, as prescribed by her HIS doctors. At one point, my mother had so many pills in her purse, that there wasn’t room for anything else.

Read the rest of the story on the all new Native Sun News website: She never partook of the ‘White man’s medicine’

(Contact Delphine Red Shirt at

Copyright permission Native Sun News

Join the Conversation