It’s been a while since I blogged last. Mostly because there hasn’t been much to say. I’ve been melting while folks back home have been buried in snow. I’ve been spending my days at the school organizing various types of school records and just in general helping the secretary get ready for the school year.
But this past week alone has been quite hectic in my little world.
I’m a year older. And for the first time in a long time I didn’t have my best friends around me to help me celebrate. I was kind of hurt and homesick for a bit. And here’s the thing about the new life I’m living. You have to make a new family. You have to find people who will take you in and be your home away from home. And I praise God that I have just that. So I didn’t have my best friends around me and that will always kind of suck, but I’m not alone, and that is just a wonderful feeling. I have truly seen this past week the support system I have. I have my family and friends in the states praying for me and anxiously packing packages to send to me. And I have friends here who graciously opened their lives up to this strange American and helped me create a family away from home, because they also have had to do so and know first hand how hard it can be to be away from home on holidays and birthdays.
The other big news in the life of me and Katniss is…FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL…in my best Nemo impression. We have survived the insane world of first week of school in Mozambique. By the time we finally got our schedules all finalized (for now) I had 3 termas (classes) of 9th grade Chemistry. Which means 6 hours a week. It took us quite a while and many conversations around a scheduling program to finally get this schedule in place, but it seems to be working.
The first day, I was supposed to teach last period. The way it works here, the students stay in one class room and the teachers move around. And there’s a long morning break for 20 minutes. Well the first day, my wonderful students left school during the morning break. I was discouraged but reminded myself it’s the very first week, much like in the states it’s our time to get back into the routine and introductions (I mean, there’s this white American teaching them in broken Portuguese…a whole class period is spent on introductions).
Among all of this, my friend Kelly, who is in another country for Peace Corps posted a blog that made me realize something. I love my village, I love my job, but it’s hard to remember sometimes that this is my actual life. 2 years isn’t really temporary at all. This is 2 years where I can either be extremely happy and make memories or I can wait for it to be over. But either way, it is 2 years of MY LIFE. She got some advice from a friend that really hit home for me and I just want to take a second and share it, and reflect on it. (We do a lot of reflecting here I think…some days there isn’t much else to do but reflect).
“Don’t bother counting the days. The end will come when it comes and what seemed at the time so far away will eventually be too close for comfort. Enjoy yourself and remember that this is your actual life for two years, not an event for you to spectate. Embrace what’s out there to be embraced while you can. Everybody goes home someday, just make sure you don’t ‘leave’ before you your time’s up”
I personally enjoying counting months (not days) just because I’m a very goal orientated person and it actually makes me proud to take a link off of my monthly countdown chain and I say “yeah! I accomplished another month in my goal!” But my friend’s advice reminds me of another thing. This isn’t a weekend trip or a vacation from life or a break from the world. This is part of my life. When I go home, I will be practically 25. I won’t get 22, 23, 24 years old back. Those years are happening. Here. It’s a nice reminder that life is happening, this isn’t pretend and it all continues on. So I’m here to make the best of it. Do the best teaching I can, make as many friends as I can, create as many memories as possible…because at the end of this, I will have lived 2 more years of my life.
Meanwhile, I am off to get ready for my adventure into the city for some school supply shopping and picking up PACKAGES! Finally :)