today i met a girl named noelle. she is 6 years old. she was sitting at the entrance of SOSCFI, on the soft couches, next to the wooden furniture. the first time i saw her, i was heading out, and so i did my thing, came back, was about to sit down at my desk, then i said to myself, NO crystal.
so then i sat by noelle, asked her what she was reading (in english), and after she gave me this blank, awkward, “why are you talking to me?” stare…i said it in tagalog, and the next thing you know, we were reading the book together! it was so fun!! it was an alphabet book, with 6 words that all started with the same letter…we started with e, and she read, egg, and elephant, among others, and then we went down through to z, where she read zebra and zigzag, and other complicated words that started with ‘z’! it was pretty awesome to see how random questions would just come to my mind – additional questions i could ask her about the objects, just to expand her vocabulary a little bit…and at the same time, she would describe the objects in tagalog, or answer my questions in tagalog, which selfishly, and yet, mutually, helped me too. 🙂
we had to stop mid-way, so i could help someone on the computer, and so i told her i would be back. i didn’t really think she even cared or was having fun – i felt like i was having more fun than her…and i ended up taking kinda a long time with the computer project, and the next thing you know, she peeks her head into the doorway, as if to remind me that i was not yet finished with her. it was awesome! haha, and then i turned on music, and i started dancing. and then she was out in the hallway, hiding from me, and dancing too. hahaha! if i have this much fun with a 6 year old…i am more than interested to see what it will be like on saturday when um, A LOT of kids come. 🙂 woohoo!
i was asked if i spoke tagalog, and i said yes, a little bit – cause it’s true…i can understand more than i can speak it, but it’s starting to roll off my tongue! which is great! yay! but basically i think i’m going to have to be teaching lots in tagalog…and seeing that some of the worksheets were written in tagalog, i was like, uh oh! hahaha, so i have to teach essay writing (subjects: history and science – which, by the way…will be interesting, to say the least!) and other types of values education in tagalog…which is such a parallel to the fact that i am to speak perfect english in casa cabrini because the young women really want to excel with their english skills…sooooo me saying girl, dang, shoot after every other sentence, is NOT going to be helpful for them. hahaha! soooo i need to perfect at least ONE language.
if i had a script of all the thoughts that were in my mind throughout this entire day, i think it would consist of many quotes i heard from MISO training (key nuggets of wisdom!), a lot of internal verbal reflection on cross-cultural experiences and entering new communities, especially on mission, an internal verbal dialogue with gina, my director, mary, and michelle (processing events and my thoughts), and then a quick reminder from sister grace telling me that “rome was not built in a day.”
i also thought to myself, boldness. mother cabrini was bold. she had zeal. and i love that. what would mother cabrini do? she had a mission, she did not know where all of her paths would lead…but Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam…for the greater glory of God. in everything. two years. let’s do this. together.
thanks for listening. glad we had this talk. 🙂