Life in the End Times

Shin's gift to Annie on their One Year Anniversary

Filed under: Paraguay — Annie at 8:05 pm on Saturday, October 6, 2007

I’ve been absent from this site for a while, but I’ve missed being here. And, I’ve missed venting. Unremarkably, the first thing I have to say is that I watched Pirates 3. It was pretty good. A little too graphic for me in the beginning- it looked like something straight out of the history books. And there were so many equally exciting parts of the movie that it kind of dulled the entire movie I thought.

Anyhow, Shin commented not that long ago that, this website was where I complained the most. So I think I should change the title from Happiful to… Pitiful… or… I don’t know. Brutally honest. The truth is, it would still be more like, Carefully Honest.

All I can say is I’m at a different place in my life. It’s a growing phase. It’s a self dying stage. And also realizing more and more who I am. I always remember how at 19 I had no idea who I was. I’m only starting to see the real me in these recent years! It’s astounding! I could have been married at 22 and been lost forever! (Actually, I was married at 23) Now that I’ve sorta of, “arrived” or become myself- I feel like a monstrous internal alien that tore out of my old, passive girl, people-pleaser shell. Meet the real me. I remember my friend Julie said at age 24, “Have you ever looked at yourself in the mirror and realized this is what you look like and it’s not what you expected to look like?” I’m starting to understand. When the self perception and the real you start to unify.

Coming out of the shell is a positive thing. I hope to come out of a few more and then my transformation into “Ajuma” will be complete. I hope I’ll have some graciousness left in me at that time.

We’re still in PAraguay by the way. That’s what I came on to vent about. It’s so HARD! I’m absolutely dreading school tomorrow. Church life is not even as important nor as draining as teaching. Teaching takes everything out of me. There are moments I know that the kids individually are all rather cute. It’s just the collective problems and discouragements thrown onto my back every day that drive me nuts and fill me with dread. My job satisfaction right now is very very low. And I’ve got 5 months to go! I’m ecstatic that I’m halfway through! Actually, that gives me hope. But tomorrow is MONDAY! NOOOOOO!!!!!

*breathe. Calm down*

I came down with the worst cold I’ve ever had in my life this week- complete with muscle aches, fever, and nonstop dripping. But I was thankful to stay home with throbbing muscles in my legs and back and spitting into the trash can and coughing every 3 minutes because I didn’t have to teach for two days!

Goodbye Table!

Filed under: Paraguay — Annie at 7:57 pm on Friday, October 6, 2006

First off, we’re going to Paraguay in January!!!

Secondly, its fallen on me to start packing the house. Then on the weekends we are taking the culmination of work I did and driving down to San Diego for “storage!”

This has brought up very difficult questions of what we need to use immediately, what we”ll need when we return, and what we don’t need at all. (I remember going through this cogitation of categorizing before). But this time it’s been somewhat easier because I’ve gotten into a frenzy of giving things away. The way people feel adrenaline from shopping and buying something new.. I’ve got the opposite. I like giving stuff away. Not everything but… stuff I can live without.

So yesterday I put up our dining room table on craigslist for FREE. Not necessarily out of generosity… It was a hand me down from my cousin when she got a new dining table. It used to be her husbands during his bachelor days! So it’s quite dated, although it looks nice. I had to cover the seats to update it. Let me see if I can find the pictures I posted.

I messaged Shin wistfully that day saying, “I hope someone will email!” I was worried too, because it wasn’t showing up in that day’s listings- maybe, I thought, because I edited it so many times it got booted or something.

Then, about 30 minutes later I checked my email and I had 14…15… 18 emails right before my eyes. At that point I panicked. I didn’t know what was the most diplomatic, smart way to respond to everyone but still be fair. And I didn’t want to have to receive 17 phone calls afterward saying, “Sorry, this item is not available!” So, I picked the third email that was a definite. That actually was overwhelming for me because I had to act quick before the emails got into the hundreds!

But then, after that frantic drama, she emailed the next morning and said she couldn’t pick it up!. So I called another person, whose coming, hopefully within the next 20 minutes. I asked my neighbor to watch my back. So she was nice and kept her door open while he worked on it. I was so grateful. Also, Shin stayed on gtalk with me too.

Our neighbors are so kind. They lent us their dolly today as well. 2 years ago, when we brought in that table, Shin and I walked from the car to the house with the glass table. I almost fainted. Then our neighbor saw us struggling and helped with the rest. The base was actually even heavier than the glass. I really need to thank them before we leave.

The person just arrived. He proceeded to take the thing apart. I suspected maybe he was going to resell it, which would be fine by me. But he said he was an architect and the table was for his mom. But he came alone because his friend couldn’t make it. So I was thinking… uh… whose gonna help you? Well.. I ended up helping lift that dang thing after all. That was the very reason why I wanted to give it away for FREE! Wow. I got suckered huh. Well.. not really. My help was minimal. He still has that clunker to unload, and when he moves…

Sigh… that emptiness in the dining area looks so nice…

Now I’m just waiting for the other lady to pick up the desk. She’s 40 minutes overdue…

A Free Day

Filed under: Paraguay — Annie at 8:04 pm on Thursday, September 14, 2006

Today was ultra relaxing. I went to the local library and picked up a vegetable ‘minute meal’ cook book and some great cd’s, Chopin, Domingo, and Kelly Clarkson. Then I hit the Pavilions parking lot and chose a recipe for dinner. Hopped inside and got $10 of groceries which I think will make 4 meals! Then came home and had a really good time making an egg salad sandwich for the first time!

There was a point today when I thought:
“Hey, this is just like single life!” followed by a self-rebuke:
“That sounded highly dangerous for a married woman!”
“Yea. That’s true… Hey! This is just like married life- without children!”

The weather today is a strange overcast. I think some of my happy memories come from days like this. Like being home with my mom on a saturday and she’s playing a symphony in stereosound and I sit around sheepishly in an oversized brown turtleneck or some other granny fashion. So I sort of enjoy the gray days. But gees, nostalgic anything makes me sad even though I’ve been laying OFF the depressing movies, music, etc.

Could you imagine a childhood memory in California without the neighborhood kids shouting in the distance and chimes, and dogs barking?

Ok. I’m in a slightly mushy mood. Gosh.. I wonder what Paraguay would be like. We’d probably be indoors like this during a siesta. Oh yea. I also picked up an audio cd to review my Spanish. We have around 2 weeks to decide whether or not to teach in Paraguay for a year.

Shin’s aunt told us about it. A few missionary families set it up over the past 20 years and now there’s 3 private charter schools that are staffed by native Paraguayans. There is also a main church, and daughter churches springing up. It’s a country without any religious restriction and the knowledge of God’s love is spreading. They are looking for native English speakers and computer teachers, so as far as their prerequisites, we fit the bill. The question is, does God want us to be there?