This is a week of short stories.
On Monday I missed my stop on the train. I had begun to think that I had some kind of ‘internal organ’ that told me when I was close to my stop. I thought this because sometimes when I’m on a train for a while I think to myself, “I have 4 stops left,” and then discover I am right. But on Monday I stayed on the train an extra 2 stops without realizing it and had to walk an extra 7 blocks to my house. This is pathetic considering my stop leaves me only 1 block to walk.
Well, maybe that was a fluke. I was looking at pinterest and got distracted. But on Friday I did it again. This time I realized as the train pulled out of the station that that station was mine! So I only had to walk 3 extra blocks that time. Friday’s mistake was due to my weariness but still left me disappointed that I, in fact, do not have an internal train clock.
Which leads me to my next short story.
Friday. I was on the train before the sun. (Walking to the train, in the dark, in the morning, is kind of creepy. Mornings are so calm and very untypical to New York. I don’t know what to think of them.) But needless to say, I was tired. But I didn’t let that get in the way of my day.
More about Friday. 🙂
Friday I did hearing screens on kindergarteners in Harlem for 5 hours. It mostly involves a lot of smiling and encouraging and making listening to beeps and letting me stick things in their ears sound as fun as possible. But sometimes we have to wait and we are allowed some time to chat, which is always fun. But the funniest thing I heard from a kid on Friday was actually DURING a screen. This was a little girl with some severe attention problems (which, as you can imagine, is a pretty big problem when I want you to sit still and listen to tiny sounds in a quite room) and at one point during the screen she turned around to me and said, “Hey! Turn it up!! I can barely hear it!” Hilarious. (It just occurred to me that maybe this is only funny to me- because of my field. If so, you can just laugh at my humor instead of my story.)
I also met my fair share of girls with great braids and boys with cute dimples on Friday. Makes me even more excited about getting a job.
Also about Friday. This screening event was the first time I’ve really been in Harlem. Kinda. My school is in Harlem, but not the ‘real’ Harlem, just the location of Harlem. But this kindergarten was in ‘real’ Harlem, next to THE projects. The Projects is a term used to define government housing. These areas, and therefore Harlem, are stereotyped as being very ‘unsafe.’ Well, I must be pretty use to the ‘hood’ in Brooklyn because I just laughed to myself when the girl I was walking with said, ‘You might want to put your phone away.’ Something about this interaction makes me feel like I belong here.
Also this week, I had my final two midterms for the month. (I say, ‘for the month,’ because I have 2 more in November and then finals in December. But for now, I have a little break. 🙂 )
*Insert midterm story here* Before my midterm on Thursday the class was interrupted by the largest bug I’ve ever seen. In my life. That I can remember. It was called a cockroach by some of the girls (who were screaming and standing on the tables) but I’ve never seen one an inch thick like this one before. And I lived in Central America. That said, the bug was killed and our pretest anxieties were released in the process.
To celebrate surviving my month of midterms (and cockroaches) I found my favorite food truck: Wafels & Dinges
Needless to say, it was delicious.
And one final thought. Sometimes people ask me if I like it here in NY. And I do. I really, really do. And I think it’s because I feel God’s grace so much more here, if that’s possible. But at home it seems easy to be ‘luke-warm’ and safe and independent from God. It’s just so easy to be comfortable and do what we need to do. Thoughtless in action. It’s something about living in a Christian culture that makes Christianity culturally appropriate and therefore, easy. But here I feel so much more dependent on God. Before I moved here I thought I would be scared more often. I mean, NY is scary right? But I haven’t been scared very much at all, in fact, almost never. Before I moved here I thought I’d probably be lonely. I mean, NY is far from a lot of people I love. But I haven’t even been that homesick yet. On the flip side, some things have occurred that I wasn’t anticipating. Mainly these things are related to me being challenged to choose to live consciously. Like my roommate said one time, here in the city I’m forced to be more proactive about choosing God, because there are so many things here that can easily suck me in. The culture is not as accommodating to luckwarmness. Here I must consciously choose, sometimes daily, to think, respond, and even relax differently than the culture around me. But I don’t think these things are coincidences. In fact, I know they aren’t. I know that it is God who is making feel safe and not alone. It is God who is working out the growth I need daily to survive here. And I just wanted to give him credit for that.
“Isn’t it funny how day by day nothing changes but when you look back everything is different.” C.S. Lewis