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"In my nation we have a famous poet who said something like, 'Learn something new, but don’t forget your roots.'"

July 15, 2013– I met Andrew, a friend of our Ukrainian translator and another interviewee in a home off of Kercher Road. He moved to the U.S. a year and six months before this interview.  Could you tell me a bit about yourself? I was born in Ukraine. It’s a little country in central Europe. I was born in a little town, Rivne town, in 1979. I have a mother, father and one brother, a little brother. After middle school I studied at national university. After national university I studied at a Bible college. After Bible college I started work. […]

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What was the happiest moment of your life?

"I kissed a girl today. That’s not one of the happiest, happiest moments of my life. I got these new shoes."

If your life was a story what would be its title? Big Life Why? Because I have a big life. I do a lot things. I’m athletic. A lot of weird things, sad things, mean things, of drama. Like what? Like arguments with girls. But, I deal with it. What was the happiest moment of your life? I kissed a girl today. That’s not one of the happiest, happiest moments of my life. I got these new shoes. What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given? Conversate. With girls. If you could give advice to a bunch of people what […]

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What was the happiest moment of your life?

It would be two. My wedding day and the day we adopted my son, the day he came home to be ours.

What was the saddest moment?

Probably my brother’s death because it was unexpected. And because I felt afterwards like I hadn’t been the best sister, the nicest most understanding. He was sort of a pain in the neck sometimes.

What would be the title of your life if it was a story? Changes. Because I’ve had lots of changes in my life. Lots of things have happened to me. So would those changes be the chapters? Yeah they would be: Young and Stupid. Young and Curious. Self Discipline. Learning. What was the happiest moment of your life? It would be two. My wedding day and the day we adopted my son, the day he came home to be ours. What was the saddest moment? Probably my brother’s death because it was unexpected. And because I felt afterwards like I […]

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"Sometimes I wish I could redo a couple things, some of the wrongs I have done or some of the priceless moments."

What was the happiest moments of your life? My son is sixteen and my daughter is nine and a half. When each of them was born, those were just priceless moments. If your life was a story, what would be its title? Once upon a time… Sometimes I wish I could redo a couple things, some of the wrongs I have done or some of the priceless moments. What moments would you redo? I would redo some of the things I went through in my marriage. We went through a troubled times, myself and my husband, and I would redo […]

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What was your saddest moment?

"The death of my grandmother. I’ve never knew anybody close to me who has died before that. I was sort of naive to the situation. I didn’t really understand how serious it was. Then when it happened it was sort of shocking and hard for a while."

What was your saddest moment? The death of my grandmother. I’ve never knew anybody close to me who has died before that. I was sort of naive to the situation. I didn’t really understand how serious it was. Then when it happened it was sort of shocking and hard for a while. If your life was a story what would be its title? Hope and Courage. I like to do things that are a little more adventurous and sometimes out of my comfort zone. I think that takes courage and not being afraid to get out of your comfort zone. […]

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"If you fall down, keep going; if you’re tired, keep going."

What was the happiest moment of your life? Picking up a skateboard. How long have you been skating? Two months. What does it feel like to skate? Why does that make you happy? I think its the rush you get going down a hill when you don’t want to fall. Or doing some trick you’ve been trying for a few weeks and finally getting it. That’s probably the best thing ever. What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given? If you fall down, keep going; if you’re tired, keep going.  Did someone in particular give you that advice? Why was […]

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"I think that often we just walk by people or we just keep our zones of space. But if you take a moment and are willing to ask a question or give a smile or make a comment or observation or something positive to them it can start a conversation that doesn’t happen normally."

If your life was a story what would be its title? Normal is Good I have often felt like my life is normal. It doesn’t have a lot extremes or as much struggles and yet it is good and rewarding and rich nonetheless. What was the best advice you’ve ever been given? Just to be me not  try to be someone else. One of my high school teachers that I respected a lot gave me that advice. What advice would you give a crowd of people? Try to get to know people for who they really are. Listen to their […]

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"¿Si tu vida fuera una historia, qué título le pusieras?

Un Nuevo Comienzo

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If your life was a story, what title would you give it?

A New Beginning"

¿Si tu vida fuera una historia, qué título le pusieras? Un Nuevo Comienzo ¿Por qué? Antes de venir a los Estados Unidos, no conocía a Dios. Mi vida estaba vacía. Habían muchas cosas malas, no me sentía bien. ¿Cuáles serían los capítulos? Mi Niñez, Mi Juventud, Mi Independencia, Conocer a Cristo ¿Podrías hablar más sobre tu independencia? Tuve mi hijo a los 16 años, estuve con su papá por un año. Después nos dejamos y fui madre y padre de mi hijo por ocho años. Yo trabajé, estudié, y ayudé a mi mamá. Ella cuidaba a mi hijo y yo […]

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Which stories do you choose not to tell?

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What’s the best advice you’ve been given?

"Do your best at all things you do. That should be enough."

What was one of the saddest moments of your life? The saddest thing was leaving for SST, leaving my friends. SST is Study Service term at Goshen College, where you go to another country to study for three months. I went to Nicaragua last summer. Leaving friends, church, my culture, being thrown into a new place, that was hard. If your life was a story what would be its title? Hymn Sings! Just because I love singing hymns, congregational song. I think its great for building community. It’s inspiring. I love them. I wouldn’t do anything else. If that could […]

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