NIDA Contest Entry

Noah, Crow, Age 21, Wisconsin

Beginning Alone

My name is Noah Singer, I am part of the crow nation in Montana, I am from Wisconsin but my dads side of the family is living out in Montana on reservation land. I go out there at least twice a year to visit and stay connected to the community and culture. My original photograph was taken in Pewaukee Wisconsin on a rainy night recently, while taking the picture, substance abuse wasn’t in my mind, but as time went on I thought about how people I know who are both young and old struggle with abuse, and a lot of people that I have talked to say that they feel alone when going through the abuse, even if they really aren’t. Here I captured a dark, empty and almost unreal setting that people who struggle with substance abuse explain how they feel. When I imagine what they feel I picture someone walking alone in a setting like this, surrounded by anxiety and the unknown because they cannot see further. This also has another story to it. I believe that this can represent someone who is putting substances behind them and starting clean, for someone who is used to the high and comfort of a foreign substance, letting go is scary and it feels like you are alone when really it is just the beginning, and soon the rainy, cold dark night will turn into day and that rough patch will be behind you. Walking alone is scary, people who struggle might feel alone even when they really aren’t, which is why we need to understand that we must take the time to be there and help our communities that struggle to be there and help, even in the darkest of times.

Is it okay to be jealous of kids who grew up immersed in their culture?

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