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Published On: Sat, Dec 8th, 2012

A Navajo Women finding her way through beauty and hope of a better Future

Dec. 8 | [email protected]

Navajo ladies have been appearing in rising model calendars and magazines. Navajo photographers are getting a chance to Brand their people as beautiful, as the landscape of red sand stone and rocky structures of the reservation that just sits north of Flagstaff.

Tasheena Chavez, clueless of whom and where she came from. Never grew up on the Navajo reservation or spoke her language until age 11, her parents separated and she and her mother along with her older sister moved to Window Rock and for the first time she was surrounded by her people “I know people weren’t to fond of me, I would get criticize and people would say, she don’t look like full Navajo.” she said.

Tasheena soon found herself bound by drugs and alcohol, trouble of a stubborn teen had risen. By age 13 she plummet from home to home, making honor roll in schools wasn’t enough, she said she was unfit for a stable home until age 18 and her youthful actions came to a standstill.

“A year of putting my life on track there was an unexpected surprise, I was pregnant. My mind flowing with concerns, I couldn’t help to think of past doctors words it would be a one in a million chance that I carry a child full term, but I wasn’t ready to give up.”, she said.

Tasheena left everything behind and reached out to her mother for help. Afterwards, they moved to Gallup where she said she Prepared for the child to come, “a day after Christmas in 2008 I finally gave birth, I named my beautiful baby girl Tatiyana Tasheena.” adding, “I struggled as single mothers do, very little money, no transportation, no home, violence and alcoholics around.”

Just past her daughters first birthday she came upon a man name Joseph Chavez, she said he had great values and accomplishments that desired her and her daughter. Two years pass, they married on January 11, 2012. They both dreamed of a better life and to break the cyle of the past generations of drugs and alcohol. Together they started a new life in Rio Rancho, NM. She her husband encouraged her to start where she left off.

Working with different photographers she landed a spot in a Native American Calendar as Miss July. She got her confidence back and a passion for modeling. She now works with a large number of photographers in her area.

Tasheena Chavez now 23 years old proudly says she is from the Towering House Clan, Born for the His Sheaves Leaf Clan, Maternal grandparents is from the Salt Clan and Paternal grandparent from the Salt Extint Clan. Tasheena said she was born in Fort Definace and the youngest of 4 from her parents Harvey and Oleta Kinsel.

“I am now a proud Native American woman from the Navajo Tribe, I continue to learn more of my culture and to speak our sacred language to pass down to my children. I would like to keep our Native traditions, culture and language alive, anything is possible no matter hardships in our path, nothing will ever be worth it, if we don’t try and it’s never to late to learn your language and your traditions. As this 2012 comes to an end and just as a memory, this is just the beginning and 2013 will see more of me” she said.

Tasheena hopes to be apart of branding her people as beautiful, a society that has in the past shun as not successful.

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  1. you did it Tashina! dang proud of you and your family!

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A Navajo Women finding her way through beauty and hope of a better Future