I think a lot of times, when a person does ministry in a foreign place and that person is single and they come back, you hear a lot of the good. You will hear the bad but no one can ever prepare you for the emotional journey that you will take. It isn’t perfect. It has a lot of emotions and not all good. I have never felt more alone than I have since I’ve come here. I also have never felt like people wanted me out so bad too. It’s been an interesting few months to be sure. I’ll start with the bad and move to the good. Because the bad is always stuck in a person’s mind at the time.
I’m a shy person in person in real life. Like really shy. Until I am comfortable with you, it’s really tough to talk to me. So in Mid-October, the school was like “hey, you’re not doing great. We’re asking for another native speaker teacher.” That was the day before fall break. Great. That was the actually the first time that I broke down since I’ve been there. I mean, I didn’t do it at school, I came back to my place and did it. So my boss came out from Prague and got everything taken care of. It was not and is not easy to think about and deal with for me. Good thing is that I’m here for at least a while longer. That’s a very good thing. That means I can invest in the faculty and students a little bit more. I have a faculty member watching a few of my classes this week and then I’m sure after Christmas things will happen or something.
Good things: I went to Germany in October. There is a German woman who was an exchange student when I was a freshman in high school and I went to stay with her and her husband. It was a fun time. Went to Heidelberg and saw a ruined castle and just hung out and practiced my German. We had Thanksgiving for the kids the Saturday before Thanksgiving and that drained me and the other American. 20 some pound turkey and we, more like I assisted in, made all the food. It was fun. We laid out paper as a table-cloth and had kids write what they were thankful for. Some of the older kids did math on it. I took a picture because it was intense math. Stuff I don’t like doing. And I got sick after it. Not fun. We also went to someone’s flat for actual Thanksgiving and it was good. I haven’t laughed like that since I left home. And I saw a guy get kicked in the chest on the bus that night. It happened right in front of us. It was really scary. But it’s a good story. One day I’ll talk about it more in a post.
I’ve done a few museums since here like the House of Terror and the Holocaust museum. I’ve gone to a couple Christmas markets. Budapest has the best Christmas markets by far. I also went to Bratislava (in Slovakia) a week and a half ago. It was cold and rainy but still really cool. I’d go back when I had more time and it was nicer out. I also will be traveling over the holiday. Vienna, Prague and probably Kraków. I’ll be staying with people I know over Christmas so I won’t be totally alone, which is good. The holiday is going to be hard enough but to be alone would be even worse. So hopefully everything works out so I can relax and not worry about school stuff because I could totally see me worrying about school and the outcome of that whole situation. But I’m traveling. YAY!
I’ve gotten involved with a bible study, a church and a book club since I’ve been here. All are good and providing me with some community. I don’t have many people close with my company so it’s hard to get community with them. But I have friends! That’s a good thing. The school also asked me to judge an English competition for 8th graders last week and that went well. I didn’t expect that to happen. I also helped the freshman last week sing a song for the whole school. That was fun.
All is good back home. Sister is pregnant with twins girls, due in February. So my niece/nephew count will double. MJ and I are doing a lot of calming down of each other. Things happen in our lives and we know how to deal with each other. She told me that my stubbornness was getting in the way of something. I’m not stubborn. I still insist I’m not stubborn. I’m not. I’m very agreeable. Anyway, we go back and forth worrying about each other. It’s what we do. We’re pretty much family. The Atlantic Ocean makes constant communication rough for us, but we get through it. We email all the time and we complain how customs has kept her package from me for 2 months already. I was supposed to have it before I went to Germany in October and I still do not have it. Boooooooo. I miss home now over the holidays and there are things I wish I could take care of back home but I keep myself busy. Because there’s nothing I can do over here right now. I just have to wait until my time here is done. I can do this. I have this taken care of. Don’t worry.