I don't really know what to say about this past week.
I will say that when it began I was quite nervous. Due to situations and circumstances I found myself wondering what exactly I had gotten myself into. I think a lot of my fellow interns were feeling that way as well.
Luckily, though, we were all in it together and bonded quickly. Let me tell you right now that every single intern serving this summer is incredible. If you have the opportunity to visit any of the places they'll be working, you'll be blessed. Actually, about half of them left today and it's been very sad around here since then. We really became a small family in the time we were all together. However, I am glad that about half of them I will get to see again at General Assembly. :)
Besides that it's been a week of growth. Honestly, this is one of the best training sessions I have ever been to. They recognized the talents we already had and focused more on building and less on "starting at the beginning." Although the week started out feeling as if it was going to be difficult, it ended with me adoring every single person - including those I started off the week feeling very put off by.
I recognized more of who I am, what my strengths are, where my weaknesses lie and I tried to discern more on where I might be feeling called to.
Let me also tell you that I felt the most affirmed I have felt in a very long time in the past two days. Not only by my peers at training but by the leadership team. It's a great feeling to know that I have shown myself to be a good, capable leader in just a week.
As for specific things we did this week... there were a few things worth mentioning.
First of all, we had two work days where we did they type of work that most of us will be doing at our sites. We completely organized the tool sheds and moved boxes full of stuff into the church. The next day we built a stand for an air conditioner that would be hurricane proof. (The church we'll be working in - Central Christian Church - had their air conditioner go out this week so it needed to be replaced and put on top of some sort of stand.) We each played a part in the construction of the stand and it will be a beautiful reminder of the summer of all of the amazing people I met this week.
I, along with the other interns, also got the opportunity this week to go to one of the homes we'll be working on this summer. It is a home owned by the Love family and we actually got to meet Marion Love, the father of the family. He told us that when they were told to evacuate they assumed that they wouldn't be hit too bad so left the majority of their stuff in their home... including their second car. Unfortunately, though, thier part of town was hit worse than any other and his house was underneath about 5 feet of water. Everything was destroyed including the car that they left. It was heartbreaking to walk through the home - to see it empty and to see it in such shambles. I could not imagine that happening to my home. I realized the amount of memories that the family has in that space and how I'm sure it was devastating for them to return and deal with the reality of being homeless. It was difficult for me to walk through the home... to see his son's room and notice the sports curtains on the windows. I don't know, I think it's just such an awful reality to deal with and it makes me incredibly proud to know that we might be able to help out just enough to get them moved back home faster.
Also, we've had much time at the beach. Well, at least a little time at the beach. Wednesday night we all loaded up and went out to eat and then walked across the street to the beach. It was so much fun. There was laughter, great conversation, and an amazing sense of unity among all of us. I think after that night the mood totally changed, too, and we started seeing each person as the wonderful people they are, regardless of earlier opinions.
Basically, it's just been an incredible week and I'm almost sad to start in on the real work. Hah!
Oh, and we went to the beach tonight. (Well, those of us left, anyway.) It was a great time again and such a calming thing. I think the four of us staying around this summer will be spending a lot of time at the beach because it's such a great stress reliever for all of us.
Alright well I'm out of here, but I'll be posting pictures up on Facebook tonight.
Love to you and you and you and you! :)