On Nov. 1, 2013 we had our Day of the Dead event held at the Sunflower Center in Petaluma_ It was a small crowd yet a powerful night. We were there to honor our ancestors. Those who came before us. I could feel their energy as we spoke our ancestor’s names. I could see they were honored and grateful that we were there on this special day for them. They were dancing, singing and celebrating with us. Lots of bright light around them and seemed to become even brighter as we sang and danced around the shrine. It was a beautiful shrine with the pictures of our ancestors, candles, flowers, water, and we fed them a little food.
About 15 years ago or so my therapist said to me, “Ask your ancestors for help. They are eager to help you. They need work”. From that day on I pray to my ancestors. The ones who love and care for me. They have helped me get through my darkest days. I remember one time I was in a great deal of grief over a family matter. Before going to bed I prayed and asked them for support and guidance. I felt tired and weak from a conversation with a family member earlier that day. I shed many tears that night with the support of a friend. As I went to bed I felt a presence in the room. I felt my sheets being tucked in like when I was a little boy. My Godmother would me tuck in me at night when I stayed at my grandmother’s home in Pinole. I could not believe what was happening. I turned on the light to see if someone was in my room. No one was there. I shut off my light and I could feel the sheets being tucked in again. I fell asleep feeling safe and protected. I knew then that I will be okay. I feel it was my Godmother Lily who came to me that night. Yes, I firmly believe our ancestors are here to protect us and guide us through life’s journey. They have been there all the time. I just needed to ask them for help and I received it. You too can be held my your ancestors. Open up your heart and ask them.
Maria Owl Gutierrez