January 18 seems like a long time ago. My German vocabulary and grammar skills have grown by leaps and bounds and every day I feel I can understand more. I am taking private German classes with one of the mothers from Melis's Kindergarten class. Her name is Ulrika and I adore her. A woman who never hides her feelings, she is refreshing to spend two hours with twice a week. Also, she told my host parents that I know more over four weeks than some of the students she had in Germany who had been studying for six months. I pat myself on the back. And then I realize how much I have yet to learn.
Without the ability to express my thoughts, ideals, and emotions adequately, I have found myself quiet frustrated. I want to say, "Holy cows! This cucumber is cold!" Yeah, I could say, "Die Gu:rke ist sooo kalt." But it's not the same. And then there is the whole matter of trying to say something that has more substance than, "This cucumber is cold." Those deeper thoughts are pretty much useless because I cannot express them. I wonder if this is how those with speech impediments feel? They know exactly what they want to say, but they are unable to express it. It is isolating. And infuriating at times.
And this is why I feel blessed. Because I have skyped with and received emails and letters from so many friends and family who do understand me, who feed that intellectual side of me, and ensure that I never feel isolated. It's amazing to me that for so long I relied upon only a few people in my life to hold me up mentally, spiritually, and intellectually. After breaking up with my ex this last summer I realized how important it was for me to reach out to my friends and my family. Coming to Paris, living on another continent, has made it harder and easier all at the same time to lean on other people. I am so thankful for the people in my life. And I am so thankful for the ability to express my thoughts and opinions. It's something I hope I never take for granted again.
I am tired now. This blog post is a bit short, and for that I apologize, but I will attempt to post something better in a few days that has some more substance and fun info in it about Paris and my work here. Love to you all!