The kids head home in a taxi with Michael, and I release a deep breath. Usually the morning has been a busy combination of laundry, breaking up arguments, working on math with Kelsey and Dylan, writing with Riley, kissing owwies, snuggling, hurrying the youngest to the potty, reading together, and getting everyone ready, out the door and into a taxi. If I can make some time I’ll try to listen to some French recordings since I accidentally fell asleep listening to them the night before.
And now it’s my turn. I look over at her. She smiles and asks how I am. I tell her, “the kids did this… I did that (or vice versa)… we all need Jesus”. She agrees and I laugh. She knows us all well enough by now. We talk a little more, or sometimes a lot more, depending on how badly we need it – all in French; and then we get started with our different exercises.
We laugh through a silly cartoon, and I listen, secretly thrilled that I can understand almost the entire retelling in French. Sometimes she’ll read from a book, sometimes she’ll retell a fairytale. Every day she retells something from the bible. I’ll get to practice telling stories and sometimes we’ll work on a particular area of grammar that I’m struggling with. My favorite time though, is when we talk.
We talk about life, about family, kids, struggles, churches, fears, current events, our past, how the Lord is encouraging us… we just talk. I love it because, in my four hours a day of learning French I know I’m not just learning French, I’m building a relationship. And the sweet woman who is teaching me French is not just my teacher, she’s my friend.