Chief Theresa Spence – Its my 42nd day of fasting and it’s hard

Posted 23 January 2013 by in Anishinaabe

Across the Ottawa River in Ottawa, the Tee Pee where Attawapiskat Chief Spence is holding fast on a hunger strike

Across the Ottawa River in Ottawa, the Tee Pee where Attawapiskat Chief Spence is holding fast on a hunger strike

OTTAWA – Chief Theresa Spence shares “Its my 42nd day of fasting and it’s hard but each day I’m here in my Tee Pee praying to the Creator.  I feel closer to the Creator. And just realizing everything that is happening: the Idle No More movement, and the youth doing all the drumming and ceremonies: it’s bringing everybody together”.

The Chief says, “It’s a movement I can’t describe: I’m overwhelmed by it too myself. Just being here: It gives me hope. You know there’s hope out there. And I tell the youth to not give up hope: to keep going, to believe there is a future: to have faith in the Creator because the Creator is powerful. He has the power to change things but we need to do our part by praying and doing ceremonies and really love each and care for each other. Even pray for the Prime Minister and the government to come together with our leaders”.

The Interim Chief in Attawapiskat, along with the Council are headed to a meeting with Chief Spence seeking the leader to end her fast. There are reports that Assembly of First Nations Chief Shawn Atleo, Liberal Leader Bob Rae and NDP leader Thomas Muclair have assisted in working with each other to come to an agreement to keep the pressure on the federal Conservative government.

That agreement may end the fast by Chief Spence by Thursday.

Attawapiskat Chief Spence starts on her journey - a hunger strike and is saluted by MP Charlie Angus

Attawapiskat Chief Spence at the start of her hunger strike hugged by MP Charlie Angus

“Each day I just go day by day and I look forward for each other and live with it,” comments Chief Spence. “I pray to the Creator and I pray for everybody, mostly the children that are unborn. When I pray I feel that peace. I encourage everybody just to pray for a better future and to come together as a nation to nation.  I thank Raymond for being here and I thank you for all your support. If I was alone I would be really down by now your encouragement helps me to stand”.

Impact of a Hunger Strike

The return to a normal diet after a long period without solid food is a process that can take as long as the hunger strike lasted.

According to Swiss Medical Weekly, “Prolonged starvation can result in serious harm to a person’s body and mind. When there is a deficit in energy intake, the body consumes its own stocks to maintain blood glucose, its main fuel. The body will first use fat stocks. Then, the body will begin to use muscle and organ tissue to produce energy. Salt and vitamin deficiencies are also harmful for the body”. Read More…