I am an MK (missionary kid) in Ukraine. Living in another country is fun and exciting on most days, while some days it’s not. I wanted to share with you some fun things about being an MK, and some things that are difficult. I hope in sharing these things with you, you will understand MKs better.
No one understands the meaning of the word “travel” until you’ve been stuck in a tiny airport for eight hours, near the ARCTIC CIRCLE. I’m not kidding, it happened to me! Traveling is fun because you can see a lot of different places in the world. I enjoy hearing all the different languages. Once we were at a birthday party and we sang “Happy Birthday” in Russian, Spanish, Dutch, English and Armenian!
MKs get to try a lot of different foods. Sometimes this is great, and sometimes it isn’t. I’ve tried a lot of foods. My favorite is vareniki from Ukraine; my least favorite is buckwheat. I’ve learned to not ask what is in the food. If I like it, I don’t need to know what is in it.
When you are an MK, you have friends all over the world, which is really neat. You hear a lot of stories, and you know a lot of people you can trust. Somehow, even though you know so many people, it gets lonely. Maybe it is because you have a language barrier, or maybe it is because you travel a lot. Whatever it is, sometimes MKs feel lonely.
Though there are many awesome things about being an MK, it is a hard life, too. Most people ask MKs about all their experiences, and remark at how lucky they are. I often feel misunderstood. Everyone thinks I have a “crazy-cool” life. While I do have a remarkable life, it’s tough.
I have moved twice. Even though in our first move we moved from America to Kiev, Ukraine, it wasn’t hard because I was 7. I was too young to have deep friendships. Our second move was to L’viv, Ukraine. I had gone to a school in Kiev for three years. I made a great friend there, but then we had to leave. When other kids say, “goodbye,” they will only be separated by a few miles. But when MKs say “goodbye” there are a lot more miles in between them and their friends.
I wanted to tell you that God gave me a new friend in L’viv. He gave me a friend who was my age, an MK, and spoke English! She even liked the same kinds of things I did. God is good! When I had to leave one friend, He gave me another friend.
About a month ago, we were going to leave my grandparents’ house to go back to Ukraine. I told God I didn’t want to leave my family, but God told me, “We’ll do it together.” I’ve never forgotten that. Even if I have to say goodbye to lots of friends, I’ll never have to say goodbye to Jesus. Whatever I do, Jesus will do it with me.
By Bekah Rainey