Thought I would take a break from studying and write a post. It's hard to believe how much information they have crammed into our heads in the last 5 days of school. I've learned the alphabet, to count to 100, to say hello and goodbye in about 10 different ways (depending on who you are saying it to, and what time of day it is, and when you might see them again. Yikes!!!). I've also learned all the French vowels, how they are pronounced, and what modifies them, like accent marks or a cedille (that funny squiggly thing on the bottom of a "c"). I've learned that there are three main types of verbs in the French language and about 90% of them end in "er". I've learned about 10 verbs, and how to conjugate them (the verb changes according to who is saying it and to who). I've learned how to say I am not doing whatever the verb is wanting me to do. I've learned the male and female name of about 50 professions (yes, they are different depending on whether they are masculine or feminine). I've learned how to say the countries of the world in French, along with the appropriate adjective (la, le, les, un, une, des, en, au, aux, etc.). The French really like things complicated. Our teacher keeps telling us, don't try to turn these words into English, because a lot of them cannot be translated. We have to put on our "French" heads, and aren't allowed to talk in English unless the teacher talks to us in English, which isn't very often. Anyway, surprising, a lot of this info is sticking, some keeps trying to leak out, and I keep trying to put it back in!
Beside learning French, I am learning some other important lessons too. After the third class, I came home, laid down on my bed and cried for about 30 minutes. After my little "melt down", I asked the Lord what that was all about. I came to the conclusion that it was a multifactorial meltdown. First; physical fatigue. In the last 7 weeks, I have gone oversees twice on trips, packed up an entire house, moved all the stuff to storage, stopped all my accounts, bills, etc. (lots of hours on the phone!), experienced holidays (Thanksgiving and Christmas), flew to France, and dealt with 9 hours of jet lag. Second was the emotional component; I was missing my family, friends, church, house, recliner, and dog! I know I can talk to my family, but I can't hug them or bake cookies with them, or hold them. I miss my comfortable bed and recliner. I miss my dog licking me and wanting to jump in my lap. I miss good friends, who know how you are feeling before you even open your mouth! I do know some people here from my training this summer, and I am meeting new people and starting to establish friendships. I am thankful for that. Third, and probably the most important is the spiritual component. I have not been spending quality time with the Lord. I had been reading my bible and praying, but really not meditating, memorizing, talking to the Lord, like I needed to be. So, needless to say, I had a physical, emotional, mental (just plain tired from all the schooling), and spiritual meltdown. The great thing is that God knew this was coming, and he knew just what I needed. I picked up my bible and started reading, and it seemed like every verse was just for my situation. I put on some Christian music, and a Chris Tomlin song spoke to me so much I started crying again, just praising God for his love and his faithfulness to us. Then a friend knocked on the door and invited me for dinner. She noticed I had been crying, and asked if she could help, so I poured it all out on her. She told me that she had a similar experience about a week after she had gotten here in the fall. (always good to know that what we're experiencing is normal!). That night was the first night I slept all night and didn't wake up at 2 or 3am. In the morning I felt like a new person. God lifts us up with wings like eagles. If we are weary, He gives us strength! I am learning to rely on Him more and more and am so thankful for my God. I am also thankful for those of you at home, that have sent me encouraging words in letters or on Facebook. Love and miss you all, Sandie