Friday, October 25, 2013

mission accomplished and an awkward moment at the doctor

Despite the fact that I gave birth to twins here in Czech, had a laser ablation procedure in Belgium, and have lived here in Czech for almost four years, I sadly must admit that I don't like going to the doctor here. This has much more to do with the language barrier than anything else; however it also has to do with these awkward moments, that are usually just cultural differences, nothing wrong on anyone's part, but I'll get to that. I realized this past year that I avoid going to the doctor, a bit too much. So, I made it my goal this summer to get over my fears (and the language barrier, which I'm still working on with Czech lessons four times a week).

One of my goals was to make sure that all five of us got the flu shot. (If you're one that's opposed, please know that I still love you, so still love me too.) For the kids, it meant communicating with our pediatrician early enough, so that she could order it, which is something that I didn't do last year. For me, it meant actually finding a regular doctor. I know, right?! Four years, and I had yet to get a regular doctor. It's just that when I was pregnant with the twins, I was going to a doctor up to two times a week. Finding a regular doctor at that time seemed like a little too much.

So, yesterday, I went to a doctor who speaks English, right in my town, and I was able to get a flu shot (they even had them in stock).

My kids went to their pediatrician yesterday as well to get their flu shots, and Brian got his in the states. I didn't make all the phone calls myself, and I did have a translator with me at the kids' appointment, but still--mission accomplished. So, yes, it's getting easier, but there are still these awkward moments.

First, what you need to know (if you've never been to the doctor here) is that you sort of have to throw modesty out the window. The nurse isn't going to tell you to get undressed and put the rob on, walk out of the room and wait for you to change. In fact, the undressing is going to happen in the doctor's office while the doctor is in there. But, the thing is that I'm never sure when it's supposed to happen. You also won't always get specific directions about what articles of clothing you should take off or keep on, and I certainly don't want to over do it.

So, yesterday, when I was at this new doctor, he was doing a very routine check up, and it all felt very familiar. He checked my throat, asked me to look up and look down, and then, he said he wanted to listen to my heart. Okay, so I'm thinking, this is where the undressing part is probably going to happen. However, I don't want to just assume that, so I wait. He asks me to do something to my shirt (I honestly can't remember, but someone who is not a native English speak doesn't always say those instructions in a clear way), so as to not over do it, I just lifted up my shirt in the back. Then, I thought to myself, he probably wants me to take my shirt off, but I didn't want to just whip it off, so I said, "Is that good?" The hesitation in his answer told me no, so I took it off. That certainly is what he needed me to do because then he said, "There, now I can work!" I'm so glad he was standing behind me so he didn't see my face when he said it. He of course, didn't mean anything by it other than just that--he just wanted to have a good listen to my heart. But oh my goodness, it's those awkward moments that I just have to laugh off!

Friday, October 4, 2013

my ridiculous teacher faces

When Brian and I were first dating, he used to sometimes say, "you're talking to me in your teach voice." It wasn't a compliment. I've gotten better at saving my teacher voice for appropriate times. Sometimes, I whip it out at the dinner table. Wish I had a picture of Alex as he's looking me in the eyes. Well, in addition to my teacher voice, I recently discovered my teacher faces.

This week, I went to H2O, Fala's (Josiah Venture's partner organization in Poland) training facility. I had the opportunity to train some Bethel college students on how to teach English to Polish students. These 20 some college students are communication majors traveling Europe, and they spent three days this week in Polish schools teaching English. This group from Bethel is partnering with four Polish churches who have or are trying to build relationships in their communities with the hope of inviting more students to their youth groups.

Greg Carlson was at H2O, and he snapped some photos from my training. I laughed out loud at myself; you can laugh too!