Here is Kira's e-mail from last week--August 2--we were on vacation!
Well, my family and friends,
Another transfer has come and gone. ?Tan Rapido? I can't believe it. I have completed transfer number 8, and only have 4 more left--unless they switch to 8 week transfers before I go home, then I'll only have like 3. CRAZY! And what an eventful weekend we had!
Monday: It was p-day. We went up to Los Alamos to see the science museum Sister Cabello has been begging me to see all transfer--the one where they have the replicas of the atomic bomb. It was okay, but not exactly my idea of fun. On the way home we stopped and took pictures with Camel Rock. One of the sisters in the branch gave us each a gift card to Olive Garden, so we ate dinner there since we didn't have a dinner appointment.
Tuesday: We weren't sure how we’re were going to be mile-wise at the end of the week because we used a few more miles on Monday than planned, and had to drive the 5 miles to the church and back to pick up the baptismal clothing, so we walked for most of the day--like 6 or 7 miles. We had a pretty successful day, and both slept great that night!
Wednesday: We walked some more, but not as much as we did on Tuesday. And we had another successful day. I also did the piano lessons for the kids that I've been doing the past couple of weeks. It was kinda rainy--but only when we were inside teaching. Yes, that was an answer to prayer.
Thursday: We had the last district meeting of the transfer. And we helped clean the church that night because we needed more service time and no one else signed up.
Friday: We did weekly planning. And we went and sat with Karina's aunt who has a mental disability while she and her soon-to-be-husband, and her other aunt and the kids were all off doing preparations for the wedding. Before we left, Ivan sat down and visited with us--something he has never done with the missionaries before, us or the elders. That is definite progress. That night, Karina and Ivan were married. They were both glowing, as were their daughters. The girls have been praying for weeks that their mommy and poppy would get married so they could be baptized. He kept finding excuses to not go get the marriage license, but this week it happened! It was fun to be there. Boy do the members of the branch know how to party! One of our investigators, well, eternigators, is a DJ, so he did the music for the dance. And if you all know me, or remember the e-mail I sent a few weeks ago about hearing the music and having a desire to dance, that was SUCH a big temptation to dance. I wanted to dance SO bad! I had to keep telling myself "5 more months. Only 5 more months." And I admit, my feet were moving as I sat in my chair, and I danced with 1 1/2 year old Angie, the sister of 2 of our investigators in a less-active family. Shame on me. Kesha, when you get up to Rexburg, you BETTER go dancing for me. Even if you don't like it you better go dancing for me.
Saturday: The morning started out normal. We got up and got ready for the baptism that evening, and sat down to study. My stomach is always in knots the morning of transfer news, and it got knottier and knottier the longer I studied. About 9:45, the phone rang. It was the mission home. Do you know what that means? It was President Miller. He asked how I'm doing and how things are going in the area. Then he told me that we'll get transfer news that night, but that he wanted to inform the trainers that they're training that morning. I'm going to be getting a new sister tomorrow. Then he told me that I'm going to be OPENING the Socorro Mission Trail Area. Whether that means that we're opening opening or whitewashing opening I don't know. I'll be in the El Paso Zone. He said that I'm going from the furthest north sister area to the furthest south. That's fun. He told me that it's kind of a double whammy, but that he has complete confidence in my abilities. I was kind of in shock by this point, but had enough mind about me to ask if my companion is learning English or Spanish, and yes, she is learning Spanish. So I am training, teaching a new missionary Spanish when I'm not super confident with my own abilities all the time, and opening a new area. I'm pretty sure my face was white when I got off the phone. My hands were shaking way bad. If I thought my stomach was in knots while I was studying, that so didn't compare to how it felt when I hung up the phone. I couldn't eat anything if I wanted to. I couldn't focus. All sorts of doubts and "what ifs" started running through my mind. It was great. Even worse-- all day long people were asking if we'd heard anything yet, and we had to say no because we can't say anything until official transfer news Saturday night. That night Karina, Dayana, and Evelyn were baptized. It was a beautiful baptism, but very bitter-sweet knowing that I won't be able to see them progress. As I stood to the side of the font with their towels I sobbed, knowing that I'd probably only see them 2 more times--Sunday at church and today to say goodbye (that's where we're headed when we leave here) :'( As we watched the video while they were changing, tears were running down my face. One of the few sisters I've gotten close to asked me "que tiene?" which translates to "What's wrong?" I responded with a simple "nada" when all I really wanted to do was put my head on her shoulder and cry. But really, it was a beautiful baptism. I am so grateful that I was able to be here to see them baptized. All three have very strong testimonies of the Gospel. That night we got transfer news, and Sister Cabello is staying here with Sister Knight--who is coming up from down south.
Sunday: Happy 13 months in the mission to me. Already? I know. It really doesn't seem like it. We had church, and I cried lots. Mostly when I had to tell Karina and her girls that I'm leaving, and during their confirmations, and my testimony, and their testimonies, and some of the testimonies of other primary kids. Okay, so basically all through sacrament meeting. During the confirmations, I sat up at the piano and sobbed. Quietly, but I sobbed. I don't think I've cried that hard for goodbyes my whole mission! Their confirmations were beautiful blessings. All three were promised that through their example, their husband/father would be brought to a knowledge of the Gospel. After church we went so I could say goodbye to people and take pictures. As we were telling several different people goodbye, they told me that they felt that it was me that would be leaving. Okay, this transfer really must be inspired--but we both thought it would be Sister Cabello leaving. Whatever.
I am excited for the transfer. It will be an exciting new adventure. But I am so nervous. I feel at peace that this is what the Lord wants. This morning in my personal study, I was studying in PMG where I left off in lesson 3, and read several scriptures over faith. They brought me a lot of comfort. I love how Heavenly Father always brings comfort and peace to me through the scriptures. That is something I have a very strong testimony of. I fasted yesterday, and am continually praying that I will have the capabilities to help this new sister learn Spanish and the wonderful people learn about the Gospel and take upon themselves the covenants of baptism. So yeah. That's my week. Eventful huh? Tomorrow I head to the mission office at 5:45 to be there for the trainer meeting at 7, then it's off to Texas. Yee-haw!
Oh, by the way—Have fun in Disneyland. Say hi to Mickey and Pooh Bear for me! I wish I could be there with you, but I’ve got my own exciting adventures that I’m dealing with this week. Pray for me! Have a great week ya'll!
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