Pow wow

Most of my heritage is PA Dutch, just like other cultures we have our odd folk cures and what not. Things passed down from grandmothers through the generations. One of the things that has most intrigued me is something we call pow-wow:


I’ve experienced pow wow for myself several times.  I am allergic to bees. We didn’t know this until I was maybe 2 or 3 and I was playing in my grandparents yard on this metal push pedal fire truck someone gave me.  I had a piece of gum and it was hubba bubba or some other thick gum and I couldn’t really chew it, so I took it out and placed it on the side of the truck.  Well a bee landed there and stung me and I swelled- site of the sting on my arm, my lips, my throat.  I was having a hard time breathing.  I think my great grandmother who lived there too, and my grandmother grabbed me and called the doctor and started making a paste of baking soda or meat tenderizer.  I remember seeing a doctor, but the swelling would not go down.  So I remember my mom and grandmother driving me to this old lady’s house and she pulled out this giant thick book-  The Bible which I didn’t know then, and she started going above the swelling in my arm & saying words quietly in Pa Dutch which is a form of German.  Later on the way home my swelling started to go away.  I didn’t think about it, I was a kid.  But over the years I would hear people talk about pow-wowing.  Years later I was overseas living and my cat ran away.  I was so upset, I called my grandmother crying and crying.  She had her friend who pow wows do a pow wow for us.  And my cat came home.  Then a few years later, another bee stung me, while I was riding on my moped and I was swelling.  So my grandmothers friend again pow wowed for me and things were ok.  So it’s like a prayer, saying a prayer for someone.  I will miss this practice, it’s going to be hard to find people who know how to do it.  But I truly think anytime you pray for someone in any manner it helps.



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