If you could go back and do school all over again, what would you change? I have a large variety of things that I would change, but one of them is that I would have given myself a little more encouragement when it came to writing and my English classes.
At a young age, someone gave me a journal, and I have written in a journal on and off my whole life. In episode 5 I spoke about the miracle of my mission journals. I’ve always enjoyed writing. But in high school, I felt like English was one of my worst subjects. The reason was that I could not figure out diagramming sentences. I was terrible at it. On into college, I dreaded English classes. I always seemed to make up for it with essays, and writing, including book reports. But it took me a while to really grasp grammar rules and I don’t know about diagramming sentences to this day.
I took French in Junior High and High School. When I went to sign up for advanced French my senior year, my teacher discouraged me saying that I would not be able to pass the class.
Little would he know that I would be called to a French-speaking mission and after my mission get a degree at BYU minoring in French.
Learning the French language helped me understand English better. I have told many high-school and college students, that English may be the most important class in their studies. Being able to effectively communicate and to do it without major glaring grammatical errors is so important in a world where we communicate constantly through text & email. It quickly shows if you lack some of these skills and it might impede your career.
I decided to start a blog in 2017 called ... you got it, “Rocky Mountain Sunshine.” I’ve had a lot of compliments, and a fair amount of criticism. In high school, getting papers back with all the things that I had done wrong in red really was discouraging. In college, I started to get more confidence in writing, and I took a business English class where all of a sudden, English grammar started to make sense. It somehow just clicked. I wrote a lot of papers in humanities, psychology, and English. Then I served a mission and learned French. My French improved a ton, and I came home, tested out of several French classes at BYU, and got my minor in French, which is no cakewalk. BYU has a really difficult French program. My understanding of the French language helped my English quite a lot. Well, actually when I first came home from France, my English was all messed up.
One of the first dates I went on was with the sister of one of my former companions. He had set us up. We went to temple square and they had a movie that was being played in one of the theaters. I asked, “Can we assist the movie?” Both the person at the door and my date looked at me weird. I didn’t understand where there was a communication breakdown. I again asked if it was possible for us to assist the movie. Again two people looking at me wondering what I wanted. In French assister means to attend. I wanted to know if we could attend the movie. Luckily my date translated for me and I walked into the theater baffled. For some reason, we never went on another date. Haha
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