Honoring the Memory of My grandmother and Grandmother to All Nellie Two Bulls

I am taking the time now to remember my grandmother UNCI Nellie Two Bulls who raised me up. I was always told that you honor your teachers and guiders. As this is what i am doing right now. Grandma Nellie was an inspriration in my life. My mother was her youngest daughter who also passed on to the spirit world. Grandma Nellie took me under wing when i was a little girl and took the time to teach me about the Lakota way of life and traditions. She taught me to speak Lakota, dance, bead,sing, the traditional ways of the Lakota women. But the most special teaching i hold close to my heart is to always love people and never judge.As she was kind to all. She would always tell me to not talk bad about others and never judge them because we are all pitiful in Tunkasila’s eye’s. The world knew her a great leader and teacher. I knew her as Unci grandmother. And as much as she taught the world she taught at home. She honored me in one of the most special traditionals ways.

She put me through the women-hood ceremony which is an ancient tradition. It’s when the younggirl becomes a women of moon time. The young girl sits on top of a hill in a TIPI for 4 days and nights. In these 4 days women of all ages come and bring their teaches of life, living,suriving, roles as a women, mothering, skills, stories, guidence, art work, and those most importance idenity as a Lakota women. Then at the age she and many other grandmothers inducted me into a warrior women socity with many other young women. The Tokala or Kate’la Society is called “Anpo Wicha’pi Winyan’s” Morning Star Warrior women Society. It was taught to us that we had to lead our lives by example and always put the people first. And that we would have many hard times defending our people but to always fight and never give up on them.

Grandma Nellie told me as a young girl that she did this for me for the future generations to come. So that one day i may teach them all that she has taught me. At the time i didn’t quit understand the meaning of that. And everytime i would mess up in life she was their to push me back on the Canku Luta (RED ROAD). She never judged me even when i fell into alcohol and the genocidal world that many of the natives live in. She would pulled me right backout and tell me to keep going no matter what. She would tell me i was a Warrior Women and the people are watching you. And i would feel shame for messing up and start over again. She always told me to never be shy or ashamed to speak or sing in front of anyone. To never give up speaking the Lakota language, that the future generation depends on us that can speak. So with her help i continued to have pride in who i am. Then in 1997 i was nominated as one of the youngest Lakota speakers and sent to Washington D.C to represent the Lakota Nation as their was only 7 Native choosen through out the whole United Stated to go represent their tribes. As Native Youth who spoke their Language fluently. As this was a great honor for my family they prepared me with songs and beautiful tradtional Lakota outfits to represent the people.

Grandma Nellie named my children Lakota names and told me to teach them to be proud of they were. Teach them to sing and dance and the traditional ways. As i do now, the names she gave my children are Ohiniyan Wokisuye Oyate Win (Always Helping her People) , my son Wakinyan Ohitika (Brave Thunder) and Canku Luta Win (RED ROAD WOMEN) and my youngest i named after my mother who passed on to the spirit world Ta’te Olowan Win (WIND SONG WOMEN). So with her teachings i changed my life around and devoted my life to the Lakota Oyate. To always teach the traditional way of life. As i am young and i make mistakes i learn from so i can help others. And i would like honor her memory on this day as it is her Birthday. Thank you to allof you who took the time to read this. As i and many others will forever and always have her in our hearts for her endless love and teachings..

O’han Wanagi Oyate Unci hena lila cante tiza ohiniyan omani canku kile o waste wopila tanka ni e cu Lakota Blihichiyapi Winyan he miye he ce tu ye!


  1. They can teach us so much about your customs, your culture and values. I joined the Native American Netroots to help support efforts to empower your people. Living as far away as I do, it’s hard to know how to do this. My exposure to Native Americans is zero, except for a visit to a couple of families on the Navajo reservation in Arizona with my aunt, who is a retired teacher and taught children in Tuba City for many years. But I feel a great kinship just the same. I hope to visit South Dakota on one of my trips to the US (I am a US citizen living abroad). Then maybe I can find an answer to the question: How can I help? Diet and nutrition are important to me, so maybe something in that direction? I realize the Lakota were primarily hunters, but do you have vegetable patches? What grows well on your land?

    I look forward to reading more from you, Autumn Two Bulls.  

  2. Namely, that to help the Lakota people empower themselves in ways like food sustainability, we would love to help however we can. We are not giving direction but asking for it.

    I’m a ways away myself; I live in western Washington, just down-peninsula from the Suquamish nation. They have a fair amount of poverty on the reservation there, too, but not like you deal with in the Dakotas. If I get a kidney transplant, I may be able to get out that way this year, to learn and maybe teach a little as well.  

  3. as you said about Grandma Nellie they were both great people who lived good lives. And talk about singing! They were the best and everyone loved to hear them sing together. I’m amazed at Nellies ability to sing so high and follow her husbands lead so well. They were so important in keeping our ways alive that they mean a lot to all of us who continue this way of life. Thank you for this nice reminder on her birthday.

  4. Thank you!

    Then in 1997 i was nominated as one of the youngest Lakota speakers and sent to Washington D.C to represent the Lakota Nation as their was only 7 Native choosen through out the whole United Stated to go represent their tribes.

    How impressive!

    I have a story to share about my relatives and your diary gives me the incentive to post it.  I’ll have to do that soon.  I need to find some photos first.

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