“My Celebration”

December 20, 2017 at 8:11 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “My Celebration”

The holiday season at LCNV is the perfect time to revisit holiday stories that our learners have shared with us over the years. LCNV learner Miriam’s essay about her experience getting familiar with U.S.’ celebratory traditions and her 2011 Christmas experience shows the ways in which family, holidays, and English language can mingle to make for a truly memorable celebration. If you know someone like Miriam who needs beginning-level English classes, share LCNV’s spring schedule with them. The opportunity to learn English could be the best gift you give this holiday season.

“My name is Miriam. I am from Peru. I have lived in the United States 6 years. I want to share with you a few celebrations from my life.

The first celebration I had I remember was when I was already big. It was my first commu­nion. I was 14 years old when I made my first communion. I felt shy because all the people were talking about me. They said I looked like a bride. I didn’t like these comments. Really I didn’t know what to say because I am from a family that is not accustomed to having cel­ebrations. This celebration was okay for me because I could not ask for something that I was not very familiar with.

The second celebration I had was here in the United States. My employers celebrated my birthday. The girls took pictures. They said, ‘Why don’t you smile Miriam?’ I felt very shy because I’m not accustomed to celebrating my birthday and being the center of attention. I wanted the party to finish quickly. But, I was very happy because people who are not my family celebrated my birth­day. At the same time I was sad because I never celebrated my birthday with my family.

But, last year, in 2011, I celebrated, for the first time, a Christmas I had always wished for, on December 25, together, with my family! Everything that I learned in these six long years, of the concept of celebrating, I put into practice with my family who are the most important people in my life. We waited together, for the night in which Jesus was born, with beautiful Christmas carols, and gifts for every one of us. I could feel by observing each and every one of their looks, a great joy of happiness and at the same time a lot of peacefulness that maybe my family had never experienced before. And finally we shared a peaceful dinner. Now for me Christmas means get­ting together peace, love and family. That day was the best celebration that I had ever had. I felt so happy and fortunate that God had given me the best gift that anybody could have given me.

When I looked at the sky and I saw a plane, I said from the bottom of my heart, ‘little airplane, some day you will take me home.’ And my dream that seemed impossible at that moment came true! And I could teach my family everything that I had learned about what a celebration is.

Now I have another dream. I am sure it will be my next celebration, because I am convinced that dreams can become reality. I only have to work hard and strive for my goal, to learn and speak fluent English to open the doors that are now closed to me.

I want a better life, and I don’t want people to abuse people like me that can’t speak English.

That day when I achieve my goal, I will say like they say in the children’s program in English, Dora the Explorer, ‘I DID IT!’”

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