I love the MTC! It is SUCH a wonderful place! So much has happened in the last 2 days! It's crazy! We haven't been able to get our mail yet because our District Leader was just assigned last night and he's the only one who can get the mail. I haven't been homesick much yet, which is good, although waiting for the mail has been a little hard. Hopefully I have some or that'll be super disappointing. (Hint hint wink wink)
Fridays are my P-day, which is great, because after yesterday I need a break. Wednesday was a really fun day. We got to meet our companions, and I love mine! Her name is Sister Pratt and she's from Payson. She sings all the time, so that reminds me of Michelle, but I don't know any of the songs she sings. They are all weird choir ones, since she's a voice major. But she started realizing if she hums a hymn I'll hum along since I"m so self conscious about singing. She is great though and I learn so much from her! There is another sister companionship in our room, and I love them. Sister Wing that we met at the temple is in my room and her companion, Sister Giles, is hilarious! I'm the oldest one in my room, which is so weird to me. We all get along so so well though! I live on the 4th floor of my residence halls and bringing my suitcases up the stairs was pretty hilarious! I should have gotten some muscles before the MTC! Who knew?? But don't worry! I'll be working out the next 9 weeks (and praying really hard) so that when I get to Korea I'll be a little more capable.... hopefully!!
Wednesday night, we had some group teaching opportunities, and that was SUCH a neat experience! It was hard to think of how to best teach people, but it was cool. It made me really nervous though about saying the right thing and especially in Korean that seems impossible. On Thursday morning though, we had a devotional and we talked about our purpose as missionaries and I had such a feeling of peace that me saying the right words is not a big deal. The Lord will bless me because I'm on his errand, and the Spirit is what teaches anyway. I just have to help and invite others to come to Him and receive His teachings in their heart. It was just such a comforting experience.
Yesterday was a very long day. We studied Korean for so many hours straight, but it really didn't make me too tired. Everyone in my district was complaining a little though about what hard work it is, and how tired they were of studying, but maybe studying science has paid off, because it just seemed normal. Also. Learning Korean is SOOO fun! I get giddy every time! Our teacher, Brother Christensen, is so so fun and just a great guy! He's apparently the 'fun' teacher, so that has been a blessing. We can just tell how much he loves us and wants us to succeed, but he makes class so fun. The whole first day my companion and I were just laughing our heads off, because he was talking to us in Korean and asking us questions, and all we could do was try to answer and pretend we knew what he was saying. So basically we said hi and yes a lot. Cuz that's all we knew..... and yes he had to teach us. haha. Yes sounds like 'nay' in English, so that's really confusing, because that's the opposite of yes.
Our district is so so so wonderful though. I love them so much. Their are two girl companionships (Me and my roommates) and 8 elders. Their is an Elder Gehrig from Germany who is amazing, because English isn't his first language, and he's learning Korean. He's so much better than us already haha. He's stellar though. Imagine a younger President Uchtdorf with dark hair. That is the quality of Elder he is. Everyone is so good though. After spending only a day and a half with everyone, I feel like we are family. We had some really wonderful discussions together last night at our meeting with our Branch Presidency, and we grew so much closer. I was writing in my journal last night about them, and I was tearing up about it, which is so weird, but I truly love them and am having such a good time. Heavenly Father truly knew that we needed each other to support and lift one another, so that has been such a tender mercy.
Last night in our district we all bore our testimonies and talked about why we were on a mission. I wasn't sure what to say, because the reason I went on a mission was because the Spirit told me to. And that seems like a silly reason. Not silly, but much less of a story than what everyone else had, but as I got up to share my testimony, the Lord let me know why I am on a mission, and it was so cool. I just can't think of anything better than sharing the knowledge of my Savior with the people of Korea. I know that I covenanted to share the gospel with these people in the Pre-earth life, and I'm so grateful I have the opportunity to do that. I feel like there are a lot of reasons I'm on a mission that are still unknown to me, but Heavenly Father has some wise purposes for this. I truly hope that I can be an example to Andrew and Allan and Paul, because being on a mission is so wonderful. I have never had a better experience. The work is so hard, but it's so fulfilling. I am tired, but it's really a wonderful thing. I wake up so happy. Even this morning I was happy, even though I was so sleep deprived and tired! The branch presidency didn't let us go until last night, which is half an hour later than they should have, and since it was P-day today we had to get up extra early for service ( ). But usually I would have been so grumpy, but I was just so happy to be at the MTC. I think there is such a joy in knowing you are where you are supposed to be. What a comfort that is.
Service this morning was pretty funny too. We had to clean and mop this stair way by the book store. We cleaned all of the glass paneling on the way up the stairs and then we were moping at the top and Sister Giles dumped out a bunch of water on the floor and it ran out and splashed out down the stairwell. It was so funny. I wish someone had been on the stairs, but it's good for them that no one was. I'm pretty sure i didn't explain that very well, but just imagine someone throwing a bucket of soapy water over the railing and down a stair well. So funny. Or maybe I'm going a little crazy already. But I'm still dying about it.
Everyone told me that the first week was going to be so bad, but it still hasn't really sunk in that I'm on a mission. It's just so exciting and such hard work. I feel like my time to sit down and cry and wonder what the heck I'm doing is probably coming soon though. Maybe even today, cuz I'm feeling really emotional, but hopefully I don't get too homesick. I'm just trying not to think about how long it's going to be before I see everyone again. If I'm busy, I'll be fine and the work is so exciting and a challenge for sure. It feels like I'm in physics all over again, and I'm so overwhelmed, but it's amazingly fun and exciting and I have faith that I'll be able to get Korean more than physics. HOPEFULLY. Also, we have to prepare a 3-5 minute talk in Korean about the atonement for Sacrement meeting , which is so daunting, because I don't even know how to say Atonement in Korean. I actually don't really even know how to say Jesus Christ. I could sound it out though. Really I mostly just know the alphabet and how to introduce myself. So hopefully they don't pick me to speak. We have the largest branch at the MTC, which is super cool! Our branch president said some pretty cool things about the Korean missions. We are just sandwiched between two very communist countries, but the work is exploading. There used to be just 3 missions in Korea with 30-40 missionaries in each mission, but since July and the addition or the Seoul South mission, we now have approximately 800 missionaries in Korea. That is CRAZY! But I feel like the Lord really is preparing the country and even North Korea for the gospel. I am so excited to be part of this. Our 2nd counselor's wife is from North Korea, and she is so amazing. I love her. Anyway, the Lord works in mysterious ways, but I know He has a plan for me and my brothers and sisters in Korea.
I love you all so so much, and hope you all are doing well! I hope Natalie had a wonderful birthday, and that you guys went and ate something wonderful and partied after you dropped me off. I don't want to hear about it, but I hope it was fun! I'm praying for all of you, and you are on my mind. Please write me, because it's so hard not being able to talk to someone about your day. And my companion doesn't count. Because she experienced everything I did. So I can't vent to her. haha. But I love you all so so so much!
PS Thanks mom for your sweet note in my journal! I found it my first night and it made me so happy! Thanks. Also thanks for the Reese's. I get so hungry here cuz I can only eat 3 times a day, which is hard for my little stomach and quick metabolism. I have been trying to stuff myself at meal times, but that mostly makes me feel sick, and i already eat slow so I think that makes my companion a little crazy. haha. Hopefully she doesn't hate me! (She doesn't. I can tell. She really likes to hug. Which is fine. But she lingers. hahaha)
PPS. I forgot my book with all my email addresses in my room so hopefully i remembered moms right. I sent it to myself though just in case... Not that you would think to check there.....hmmm. I guess if I don't get letters next week I'll know why. But really write me, ok?? OK:)