Thursday, January 19, 2012

524,600 Minutes

At this moment, exactly one year ago, I was finishing my first meal with my family in over 18 months. I was sitting in mom's new kitchen with my family, missionary nametag in place, but knowing it wouldn't be there for much longer.

Last night, it really hit me that today is my year-mark of being home. And I totally broke down in tears. I reached over and picked up that black nametag, which I always keep nearby. It's something so trivial, yet something that means so much to me, because the months that I wore that nametag were the months that most shaped me into the woman I am today. And as I sat there, holding my nametag I started to sob. My heart ached for the mission. I longed to be back with the people I grew so to love. I yearned to have a full-on conversation in Spanish. I wished that I had all of my missionary journals here with me, so I could read them, and, in a sense, go back to that time.

I turned out my light, and tears rolled down my face and onto my pillow. How I wished I had, at the very least, a teddy bear to cuddle with. But I didn't have even that. Eventually, I fell asleep, still longing for the mission.

Now, overall, it has been a good year. Of course there were ups and downs, but I do believe that there were more ups than downs. I've met many more wonderful people who I have grown to love. I've had conversations in Spanish. Honestly, I wouldn't trade the past year for anything...except to go back.

Every day, for the past 365 days, I have thought about being a missionary, and the many wonderful experiences I had as such. And for the past 365 days, I've wondered how it would feel to hit my year mark being home. Now I know. And I dread the day, in just 6 short months, when I will have been home for more days than I was a missionary. I don't even want to think about that.

And so today, on this anniversary, I want to joyfully remember all of the people who touched my life while I was a missionary. I want to remember the experiences I had. I want to remember the joy I felt on oh so many occasions. Don't get me wrong, it's been great being with my family, but, as to this point in my life, nothing compares to being a missionary.

1 comment:

  1. The year mark was difficult for me too, but the days since then have been less so. It seems like every month on the first I would remind myself how long I had been home, and then remind myself what I hadn't done yet that I wanted to do. But I'm learning to be less on my timetable. And I know for sure that my life post-mission has been better because of the comforting memories I have of the faces and places on the mission. Congratulations on making it this far!