Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Spiritual and Literal Privileges of a Second Person

You may be wondering why the title of this entry is so long. I will explain why. You should know what a privilege is; I expect most of you do. What I want to write about are the ways I am finding my way around in my mind and in my city.

One privilege is the art class, which is about a half a mile from here. I have just recently been given the privilege of walking there by myself, and I am close t
o being able to walk home by myself. Another privilege relates to a "detsky sad" (Kindergarten) nearby that I can take the boys to and from to play at its playground. Let me explain: you are probably able to go to places very freely by yourself - including you children. So I don't expect you exactly understand the big deal about being able to walk a half a mile. Let me say that I grew up in a neighborhood that was very quite, but I was not even allowed to walk a half of a half of a mile. So now I am walking on a very busy street, crossing all by myself, without my parents worrying.

Now, for the spiritual privileges. Recently, you may have learned, I have started to speak the language a litter easier and start to feel at home here. Before we went to Finland in January, I was all upset. I did not want to go to Finland. I wanted to stay in Russia, now my home. And you may say, "you have deprived my home country; it is no longer your home." That is exactly what I mean; I have deprived it. As I was singing in Russian this past Sunday at church, I realized that I did
n't want to go back to America. I wanted to stay right where I was. And that feeling has grown ever since I knew I had it in me. Second of all, though I may not be able to speak the language fully yet or pronounce things correctly all the time, I feel as though my language has grown a bit. Before I wrote my entry, "Feelings," (pt. 1) I was saying only, "I don't understand" in Russian. Now, after "My Feelings" (pt. 2), I feel that I am speaking it fully, though I cannot, though others can understand me and they correct me so that I understand more. This is a spiritual privilege because it is in me, not around me.

The Second Person part means that I feel like I am a new person, because, though I cannot exactly name it all, I feel that something inside me has changed. I think that if I were in America, I would never have had this feeling. In America, every day after the day that I knew that we were moving seemed like a day of dread. Since I knew that we were having to pack more and more, I felt that my life was being ripped apart by the sudden notion that I had to leave where I had grown up. And now I feel at home, and if I was called out of the country, I would feel e
ven more again like my life was being ripped apart.

When I first heard we had to go to Finland to renew our visas, I knew there was no way out of it, but I was still mad. I was as mad as a horse at a fly that bit him in the nose. Knowing that I was going to come back soon helped make it easier as it got closer. When I got to Finland, I felt better, though, because I had gotten through the hard part of leaving our new home.
When I came
back from Finland, I felt even more at home. You know the feeling, when you have gone on a trip and you come home, you feel at peace, at rest, happy at home. That's what I felt, but even more, because during the last times of my being in America, I traveled a lot. So when I came home, I always felt at home, but not totally at peace, because I would have to go again - I would have to leave forever soon. So now when I came back from Finland, I felt so at home that I was surprised, but it was a good feeling.