“What I Love”: Indigenous Millennials Share What They Love



For our Love Issue, we documented indigenous millenials as they shared what and who they love. The answers were so diverse and remind us that you can find love in anything and anyone in your life. 

Watch the full videos at the bottom of this post.

Sarah Ortegon / White Owl Woman | Shoshone and Northern Arapaho

Photo by Viki Eagle/Native Max

Sarah was born and raised in Denver, CO. However, growing up her parents would take her to the Wind River reservation as a kid. She would travel back and forth from Denver to Wyoming and would spend her summers on the reservation. She remembers being a dirty kid, playing in dirt hills and getting chased by rez dogs.

Sarah is all about is self-love: “No matter how much you want to give to others, you can’t pour from an empty cup. If you don’t feel the love within yourself, if you don’t feel like you’re worthy, you don’t feel like you’re meant to accomplish things, how are you going to create that within yourself to push yourself forward. I feel like a lot of people are looking for love, for someone to fill that void, they’re looking for someone to constantly give to them but when you’re focused on only receiving love you’ll never be able to give it fully.”

Scott Denver | Ute Mountain Ute and Diné

Photo by Viki Eagle/Native Max

Scott Denver was born and raised in Cortez, CO and soon after graduating high school moved to Denver, CO to attend college and remained here ever since.

Scott loves working and fighting for his people: “I love the struggle. That essentially makes us who we are and I love the people on the forefront fighting these battles on a daily basis because somebody has to. Even with my job. I work at the Native American Rights Fund, I’m a paralegal and we deal with a lot of legal issues pertaining to land rights, voting rights, water rights, getting tribes federally recognized and that’s something that I just love about that we have people that deal with legal issues and do it in a way that shows us in a different light, that we’re intellects, that we are loving individuals and that we care about our people and that’s what I love. Maybe one day I’ll be up there with the likes of Russell Means.”

Celeste Kimimila Terry | Oglala Lakota

Photo by Viki Eagle/Native Max

Celeste Kimimila Terry is Oglala Lakota and was born in Boston, MA but hails from Aurora, CO.

Celeste on her love for all those who support her: “I love my family, I love my people, my culture, I love sharing knowledge. I think learning is a beautiful thing. I think art is beautiful. I love my mom, my dad, my sisters, my aunties, my cousins, my whole tiospaye, my tuwahe, my whole community that I’m from. The people I love support me, they uplift me and keep me grounded when my ego gets out of balance. They do a lot more for me than what I do for myself without them.”

Jared Abe | Diné

Photo by Viki Eagle/Native Max

Jared Abe is Diné hip hop artist who was born in Farmington, NM but was raised here in Denver, CO.

Jared on his love for music: “What I want to talk about today is my love for music because music is just an expression for everything and music can hold so much power and such a big message because I do music myself. When you hear the music, the beat, that kind of gets you going and you can hear the emotion. There’s so much emotion that goes into music. The instrumentals, the music, the vocals, you hear all that emotion and it carries such a strong message. Music can move people and that’s what I want to do with my music.

Kelly Holmes | Mnicoujou Lakota

Photo by Viki Eagle/Native Max

Kelly Holmes is Lakota from the Cheyenne River reservation in South Dakota. She relocated to Colorado with her family when she was only 16 years old. Kelly is also the founder and editor-in-chief of Native Max Magazine.

Kelly on her love being a mother: “I love my kids. I am a mom to a 7 and 3-year-old. I love them because I feel like everyday I don’t know what I’m doing half the time and things don’t go as planned and I doubt myself. But everyday that my kids wake up in the mornings I feel like I’m doing something right. They taught me patience. They taught me unconditional love.”