My family and the Anderson family recently went on a week-long trip together. Auntie Tiff, Jensen and Kasana’s mom, had a book with her about the lies that PKs and MKs believe. While playing Settlers of Catan, we overheard our moms talking about this book. Of course, we had to examine this book and see if it was true or not. After looking it over, we all laughed and spent the rest of the week constantly referring to these “holy heresies”.
For example, Kasana, Catriona, and I were sorting rice but none of us were very confident on the “proper” Ugandan way to do it. You are supposed to put it in a basket and toss it up and down and blow so the chaff blows away. Instead we picked through it but then Kasana said, “I should know how to do this.” And I said, “Because you should be perfect and if you aren’t then you might ruin your dad’s ministry.” Then we burst out laughing. Another comment this book made was that sarcasm is the second language of PKs and MKs. Noooo, of course not. Me? Sarcastic? Never.
|Annet teaching me some Ugandan cooking skills|
Although we spent the whole week making fun of this book, there is some truth in it (especially about the sarcasm). For me, I wouldn’t admit feeling these things, but it makes sense when I think about some of the things I do. For example, “I should know this already.” Personally, I struggle with this one. I feel guilty when I don’t know the answer to the Bible question. I feel embarrassed when I don’t know how to cut the cassava at the family group. I feel ignorant when people talk about a musician or actor who I have never heard of before. The book said that if MKs took the word “should” out of their vocabulary, they’d only say half as much. I don’t think I say it that much but it is something that I feel frequently.
I know that I shouldn’t (there’s the word again) feel this way. I know that there is no reason why I should know all these things, but the truth is it does come up. I don’t even know why. Maybe it’s because I think that since I live in two cultures I should know everything from both. Maybe it’s because everyone expects a missionary kid to know every single Bible story and fact.
Although this book was addressed specifically to MKs and PKs, I think that everyone believes these to some extent. Even in pre-Uganda days, I always wanted to be perfect. I expected to know the answers to every question. I think that living here has actually brought these to the surface and humbled me. I realize that I don’t really know all the answers. I know that I make cultural mistakes. I recognize that there are many things that I don’t know how to do. So although the book faced a lot of jokes from us, it has definitely been helpful in pinpointing some of the things I sub-consciously believe.