Monday, March 1, 2010

Day 60 - Funny little story...

Our church has a pretty large Chinese ministry. Honestly, my favorite aspect of the ministry is the Chinese kids :o) I know it may seem politically inncorrect, but I just love Asian kids. There I said it. I do. I think they are beautiful and sweet. However the feeling is usually not mutual (at least at first). Haha! The first little Chinese girl I had in Sunday School was Mei-Mei. This little girl is precious...just precious! The first day her mom dropped her off in my class around 4years ago, she was probably 13 or 14 months old. Her mom (who is now one of my friends) didn't speak fluent English at that time and told me that I could call her daughter "Mei-Mei" and that she didn't know any English. It is a real challenge to comfort a child that cannot understand a word you telling them :o) The year I had her in class really helped prepare me for Sophie Le's adoption. Mei-Mei liked for me to hold her (and wouldn't let me put her down), but she screamed and screamed. Week after week, she screamed. But you know what, I didn't mind at all. I really liked Mei-Mei...and I still do :o) Anyways, I called this child Mei-Mei for YEARS before I realized Mei-Mei is actually more of her family nickname which means "little sister" in Chinese :o) Mei-Mei is now five years old and is one of Hillary Ashton's good friends. Btw, I now call her by her American name :o) Here they are in 2007 at VBS...
That was a really long intro to the story I am actually attempting to tell you :o) Haha!

So fast forward to a few weeks ago. A new little Chinese girl got dropped off in our Sunday School class (we teach the two year olds now). This child talks a lot, but speaks no English and only understands "Pee Pee" in English. Understandably, she was not thrilled with the idea of being dropped off with these two crazy people that just smile and nod at her when she talks. The first week was really hard on her. I went down the hall and asked Mei-Mei's mom (who is now Julianne's Sunday School teacher) to come down and talk to this little girl and help calm her down. She came, talked to her in Chinese and the little girl calmed down. My friend left and the little girl fell apart again. She got really upset, but it was time for snacks so we were hoping that would appease such luck :o) The little girl got pretty worked up so I decided to go get my friend to talk to her again about eating the snack, but she was already gone. So I went to Mei-Mei's class and asked her if she would come talk to this little girl and calm her down. She sweetly agreed.

Mei-Mei and I walked down to the class and I said, "The little girl is Chinese and she doesn't understand what I am telling her. If you can just tell her to eat her snack in Chinese, I think it will make her feel more comfortable." When we got to the room, here is how the conversation went...

Little Girl - cry, cry, cry
Mei-Mei - "Hi little girl. This is your your snack."
Me (laughing) - "Can you tell her to eat her snack in Chinese."
Mei-Mei (looking at me like I was a little crazy and then looking toward the little girl) - "Eat your snack."
Me (seriously lauging now) - "Can you tell her in Chinese?"
Mei-Mei (looking at me like I am a complete nut) - "I AM Chinese....(then looking back to the little girl)...Eat your snack."

Haha! Everytime I think about that, it cracks me up.

I am happy (and thankful) to report the little girl did AWESOME in my MDO class last week and AWESOME in Sunday School this week :o)

As funny as that situation seems, I am so nervous that Sophie Le will be in a similar position one day. Maybe when she travels back to Vietnam or is just around other Vietnamese people. How will she feel not being able to communicate with this group of people that share her history and past?

And just because...


Jason and Erin said...

I wonder the same thing. I've considered Vietnamese lessons, but the source would have to be chosen carefully. I don't think an at-home course on CD would work. It would have to be authentic.

Emy said...

ha ha ha ha! Thanks, I really needed a good laugh!!!