Crescent Island

Crescent Island

Saturday, March 26, 2016

A Trial Run in Parenthood

Three days into vacation, and I am lazy. I have not run at all. I have not cleaned my house. I have not not taken a nap each day (double negative for the win). When I talk to people back home, they are all amazed and surprised that we get a whole month off in between terms. But when you are going non-stop, full time-plus working schedule, a month off is critical to the well-being of the staff and students.

This term was especially crazy, as I have already mentioned, because of choir tour and because of Interim. Interim is a week-long trip required for all juniors and seniors as a part of their social studies grade which are led by staff members. They go on different trips around the continent of Africa exploring different cultures. This year there were Interims to Egypt, Northern Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Tanzania, the Kenyan Coast, Zanzibar, and many others. So while the Juniors and Seniors and part of the school Staff are on these trips, the rest of the staff cover classes, and jobs, other duties for the week. Interim happened the last week before vacation, and I helped out covering a few different things for other staff members. I took care of Monte, the great dane puppy, for my dear friend Cassandra while she went to the coast. While Steve, the band director, was leading the Tanzania interim, I was in charge of the music department, helping direct a brass quintet for offering during Sunday church. And I took care of three adorable kids for my friends, Amy and Kevin, while they led a trip to Ethiopia. What an adventure that was.

I was a little overwhelmed the first few days as what I had committed to with a large dog and three small children, plus my normal full schedule, plus a little extra. But I settled into a rhythm and relied on at least three cups of coffee a day to keep my energy up. It was a busy, but very good week, and I was so happy to help out my friends while they were on their trips.

The three kids, two girls and a boy - kindergarten, first grade and third grade - were bundles of energy who were so excited to help out with Monte. And throughout the week, I kept up a list of the hilarious things that they said to me. So I present to you Missionary Kids Say the Darndest Things Part III:

1. "I love to pick up Monte's poop" - said by the oldest, and she meant it. Seriously. Every day she would ask me if we could "pick up the poop now?"

2. "Miss Stephanie, you look so beautiful with glasses" - said by the youngest. "I think you look beautiful with or without glasses" - said by the oldest. "Mrs. Wiley, I think you would look beautiful even if you didn't have any skin" - said by the middle child. #makingmeblush

3. [The youngest patting my stomach] "When are going to have a baby?" "Well I'm not married yet, so I can't have a baby yet." "When are you going to get married?" "I have to get a boyfriend before I can get married." "OH! My daddy can be your boyfriend!" "Oh no honey, he's already married to your mommy." - After this conversation, I was almost on the floor laughing. The logic of kids.

It was an overwhelming but good week because the kids are fantastic and so fun. I did learn that I hope (God willing) that I will never be a single parent, because it is super hard and exhausting. Now it is vacation, and I have a month before my last term here at RVA. Time is flying by and I want to savor what's left of my year here. I want to spend time with the wonderful people that I have met and become friends with, and have a few more adventures to fill up my memory of this fantastic country.

I would love prayers for:

  • Good rest and relaxation this vacation. It was a crazy term, and I want to be fully rejuvenated for third term. 
  • Safe travels. I am going to the coast for a week at the end of the vac with two friends, and would love prayers that all our travel and time on the coast is safe and fun. 
  • Preparations for coming home in July. Heading into my last term, I have started planning ahead for my transition back to the States. It is a lot to plan, and prepare for mentally, and I want it to go smoothly.  

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