Well, so transfers went good, I had to go to a meeting beforehand with all the other trainers where we were taught about how serious this whole thing is and we need to be more obedient than ever and be a good influence on these brand new missionaries, and the whole time I was trying not to laugh, I am such a bad missionary. We met our new greenies, a group of 15, three of them sisters, ages 19, 20, and 21. My companion is the 21-year-old (thank goodness, Sister Hatfield woulda killed me if I'd gotten her 19-year-old, luckily SHE got that one--background story: the 19-year-old wrote a letter to Sister Hatfield a few months ago cuz she'd found her blog and wanted to know, like, what stuff to bring to Alaska and stuff, and Sister Hatfield has been dying to train her ever since, hahah).
So my companion is Sister Archer, she's from Bountiful, Utah, she's 5'1'' and has dark red curly hair, she likes to sing. Speaks American Sign Language, wants to be a special ed teacher for deaf kids. She likes anime and Japanese stuff. I'll try and see if I can email a picture, but right now the SD drive is not working on the computer and so it's not letting me. Sad. Hah.
It's fun being a trainer, I wish we had like, progressing investigators, it's hard to do the first 12 weeks program that has you rate yourself on how well your investigators understand your role as a missionary, how often you ask your investigators to do kneeling prayers, if your investigators understand why church attendance is important, when you don't meet with any investigators. We texted Miss Reincarnation and she had to "check her schedule and see" so we might not see her, um, any time soon, hopefully, WITH FAITH WE WILL.... Another investigator's husband asked us to give her some space... And the other one has said consistently the last 3 times that she will let us know when she's free, and I don't want to be pushy, so I'm waiting for her to tell us when she is free....
Sister Archer had her first district meeting today, that was fun.
The "First 12 weeks" is the thing that trainers use for two transfers to train a new missionary. It has you complete certain goals, most of which require the new missionary to take the lead in finding, teaching, and planning situations, essentially so he or she can then, at the end of 12 weeks, turn around and start to train a new missionary themselves. When I was being trained with this I remember being bored a lot. HAHAHAH. But one of things Pres Beesley told all of us trainers and new missionaries last Tuesday that the level of interest and enjoyment you have depends primarily on yourself, so I can only blame myself for being bored back in the day and now I can start to try and see what I can do that will pique Sister Archer's interest more. She's dyslexic (like, she actually has been diagnosed, she doesn't just say that to explain fumbles and stutters while reading) so as we read a lot, I know she likes discussing what we just read so she can make sure she understands.
People we meet with--
There are 3 recent converts, very sweet women, all three of them single, all three of them with very hard lives, the kind of lives where it seems EVERYTHING happens to them. First there is The Counselor, one of my favorite people to meet with. We see her twice a week, consistently. She's had hard experiences in the past that have made her very sensitive and wary of certain things, being baptized 2 years ago was difficult, she calls it her "drowning" cuz a man pushed her under the water to do it (she has a very sarcastic sense of humor...we laugh a lot when we're over there). She's been laid off for a year. She used to be a drug/alcohol counselor. Her spiritual life is growing and her testimony is amazing. The rest of her life is falling apart. Her husband has a "lady friend"--and they're JUST FRIENDS, he insists, but he spends more time with her than he does with The Counselor. He's a less active member of the church who could care less about the church.
Then there is the Stellar Mom, her son is autistic and her daughter is in a behavioral treatment center in Anchorage. The Stellar Mom is amazing. Our last lesson with her on Saturday was so hard. The autistic son was ON one. He's 12. He spent the whole time cackling, making a racket with the legos, swearing loudly, yelling, singing opera, all while we were trying to teach the Atonement and the Stellar Mom kept patiently telling him to be quiet and be nice and respectful and not once did she lose it, only she did a little bit when he decided to really get our attention by pulling down his pants! DOn't worry, his backside was turned away from us. Anyway, she's an awesome mom, even more so because she herself has a learning disability.
Then there is the Ice Cream Shopkeeper, a woman who has a daughter who's 11 who's always sick with pneumonia or something and is allergic to all sorts of stuff. She herself has cancer and has a ligament/bone disorder that has left her with no teeth, but she's still beautiful, and since she likes natural things she has never gotten fake teeth. She's started up her own ice cream shop with the help of various missionaries over the past year and happily smiles at everyone and makes her own cakes for birthday parties that take place there, and she teaches kung fu, belly dancing, ballet, and all sorts of classes, because she knows how to literally do everything. When she was little she wanted to grow up to be a...um, I don't remember. The person who grows plants in water.
We've started to visit a sweet less active lady who I am coming to love very much, about twice a week as well. She has always had diabetes and she recently had to have surgery, a triple bypass, and when she woke up, she had gone completely blind. She spent two or three months in the hospital and is now home, and has been confined to a hospital bed ever since, but recently with her therapists she has been able to stand up and march about a little bit. She hasn't been to church in a long time but loves God very much, and loves our visits, she says we bring the Spirit to her house. Since she just lays in bed all day long, in a lonely dark world, we read to her. We've been reading conference talks. Today we actually listened to Joseph B. Wirthlin's talk, "Come What May and Love It" and it was good to hear Mrs. Blind (that's what I'll call her) chuckling at the funny parts. Her husband is always at work and her sister from Northern California was up for a while to take care of her but has since had to go back, and her brother, who is disabled, is staying and helping her out, and she's had the Relief Society President (who's awesome, one of the best relief society presidents I've worked with) and various other friends over every day to take her blood sugars. I just can't imagine waking up completely blind. She can't even see light when she's staring into broad daylight. But she says she can feel in the air when it's daytime or nighttime, I thought that was interesting.
Anyways. Just pluggin away. We met a woman tracting a couple days ago who wasn't interested but told us her 1-year-old daughter just recently got pneumonia and we said we'd pray for her and the woman was touched and almost started crying. Sister Archer gave her a book of mormon and really wants to go back and check. I'll keep ya posted about her. Sister Archer is cute, while tracting she handed out severalmormon.org cards with our number on it and the people gladly took the cards and she said afterwards that she was so excited for the people to call us back. Sigh....MAYBE THEY WILL, you never know!!! Hahahaa. I didn't say anything to discourage her. But as we keep going I'll try and help her get the people's contact info so we can contact them.... hahaha.
I love you all! Life is good. Hard, I still miss Petersburg, isn't that nuts. I know I need to get over it. Haha. It's been an adjustment being back around other missionaries, and their drama, holy cow. Just kidding, they're great, all missionaries are perfect. Actually we've got some pretty hard-working spiritual missionaries. I think they are all awesome.
I know the Church is true, I know the Savior lives and loves us. I know we gotta have faith to keep going, and we truly gotta rely on him and his plan for us. If we want to put our trust in him, we gotta actually do it. Like a member was telling me the other night, if we have a "bucket of worms" and we pray to God at night and say, Here I will give you my problems, thy will be done, lead me where thou wilt--- and then we pick up our "bucket of worms" and go to bed, we didn't really turn it over to him, did we? Easier said than done, though, I think. But. I know God loves us, and he wants us to trust him.