A Letter Home, 17 June 2014

17 June 2014

Dear Mom and Dad

Here is a long, overdue Thank You letter. I use the back of handouts to write my journal entries to save paper, haha. Then I type it into my computer for extra protection. I’m currently sitting in class observing a Burkinabe teacher control and maintain his rowdy class. But since I’m bored, I thought of you.

I talked to Daddy yesterday, and like always, it was amazing to hear your voice. I told him that a large number of my fellow volunteers do not have their family’s support. I can’t tell you how thankful I am that I have you both. Not only for this trip, but in my life.

You continue to push me beyond what I could have imagined. I literally turned my dreams into my reality. I am now traveling, speaking another language, and giving back to others. At times, I miss you so much, of course you know that, but with my smiley personality, I find joy in playing with my host family. I can’t wait to start my secondary projects, though, and move to Meguet.

Brainstorming with my homologue named Rasmada, I found out that the previous volunteer that I’m replacing did not do much work. Meguet has a girl’s dorm and beaucoup children. They have a computer in the school! They want classes. Also the girls want to learn more about puberty, and since I’m a girl I can better connect with them. I want to start a crafts club with them, also. We will meet twice a month and do projects out of clean trash.

Many people want to learn English, so the other two weeks, alternating, I want to teach English after school. A quote has been made to put solar panels in the school, but I have to raise the money. I will also work on that.

These are just some projects as of now that I have discovered before arriving in Meguet. Of course, we will see once I get there. My plan is to keep myself busy; it makes the time go by faster. Also, this is why I’m here – to help the people. Not sit on my butt. So I’m anxious to get started.

But I wanted to write you to tell you my ideas. We never seem to get to it on the phone. 30 minute conversations are not enough time.

But thank you for everything, Thank you for my amazing gifts. My family here asks where I got my watch, kindle, guitar… I always answer and say from my parents, “whom I love very much.” They say I am lucky to have nice parents. I couldn’t agree more.

Living here has made me appreciate the little things even more. I thought my eyes were already open, but it turns out there is always more to learn. Thank you for being supportive; I can’t wait until you come here. Thank you for putting up with me. I wasn’t ready to start my life before, but now I can’t wait to see where it takes me.

I still have tons to learn. Last night however, I had my first 20 minute conversation in French. I was so proud of myself. My host mom and sisters are gone, so it’s just my cousin. She is 20 and her name is Ava (they thought it was funny that my dog is named Ava, also). But since she finally got me to herself, we talked all night. We used the dictionary a lot! Then she started reading a book on my kindle. So I want to download simpler books for her to read out loud in English and for me to read out loud in French.

School is long and hard, but your texts keep me going. Like always, tell the boys I say Hi, and please give Ava and Onyx a kiss for me. (Mom please tell everyone at the barn and all our friends Hi). Every night I look at the stars and think that even though we are so far away, we still share the same blanket of moon and stars.

Always Thinking of You,

Love, Sweetheart <3


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