I FINALLY MADE IT!!
Yes, I'm here in Independence :D It's ABOUT TIME. I figured I'd send y'all a quick note to tell you about my adventures here :)
My flight went well :) I touched down in Kansas City and was greeted by a couple of Senior Sisters, who took me out to Subway to eat, which was good since I hadn't eaten anything since throwing up in SLC. We're technically not supposed to chew gum, but you better believe I was so anxious about everything and worried that my breath would reek that I was chomping away for most of the plane ride.
My trainer's name is Sister Sheyene Stobbe (as in Stobbe-Wan Kenobi. And yes, I do call her that. Every day.), and she's great! I'm trying to figure out how to send you some pictures, which isn't working currently because I'm on a library's computer. Mom - if you'd send me one of my fifty flash drives that are floating around my room, that would be great :) She's teaching me a ton - we've had some pretty good times already. She's like me in the way that she keeps everything to herself, so we're having to put a little effort into learning about each other. And she stresses out easily, so I'm learning how to best remind her that she's doing fine and try to be an equal participant in lessons n'stuff. It's kind of scary, but I think I'm getting better haha it doesn't feel like it, but slowly I'm contributing more. I'm still super awkward, so life's great :)
My schedule is evenly split between a proseliting area and the VC. My VC shift changes, but that's okay - I like them both equally :) at the VC we can take people on tours or we can study, which I've been doing a LOT of, because in order to drive and train in our mission, we have to have all of our lessons memorized. I've got the first one down, but the second is a pain in the butt. It's so long. So I spend most of my VC shift sitting in front of the Christus, reciting the Plan of Salvation to Jesus. Totes fun.
We live in a cute little house called Willis Place. There are three other companionships living there with us, which makes for a lot of fun. We all do a good job of staying true to the schedule and focusing on our studies when we're supposed to. The senior companions are very big on obedience, which is great for all of us who are learning. Oh, by the way - the sister from BYU Hawaii that I met in the MTC lives with us! Sister Zito was the first person I saw after the sister missionaries that picked me up and she has been such a help to me. I didn't know I could just love a bunch of people instantaneously, but it's happened.
I have yet to meet most of our investigators, but the ones I have met are AWESOME. I committed a twelve-year-old girl named Mckayla to baptism last week, but she has really bad ADD, so we still need to go over exactly what that means. But she's so fun to teach, because her family is really broken, so she's VERY aware of when she feels the Spirit. We had a little issue with her reading the BoM because she found a New World Translation of the Bible (courtesy of the Watchtower), and thought it was easier to read. But we got her a picture BoM so hopefully she can read and feel the Spirit more and know that she's on the right path.
One of the investigators I haven't met yet is a guy named Sayko. Pronounced psycho. He's pretty much a Samoan chief. No big deal. He has to go back to his people soon, so we're trying to help him recognize the importance of daily scripture study and prayer. He used to be a member, but he had his records removed. He's got four sons, two of whom were baptized a little less than a month ago, and he's divorced. There are some complications with his wife that they're trying to work out so he can know if he needs to be rebaptized or not, but Sister Stobbe loves him, so he can't be nearly as scary as he sounds. I hope.
ALSO my mission president will send me to a Spanish area if I ask :) After I memorize all my lessons, I'm going to start learning them in Espanol, and then I'm going to ask him to send me somewhere so I can learn and be fluent :) The Lord provides, my friends. The Lord provides.
I love you all so much and I'm going to do my best to send you each a letter :) Feel free to give this to the extended fam to read. I'm only allowed to write on P-day, so I don't think I'll be able to get as many letters out as I want, but I'll do my best :) And thanks SO SO much for sending my blanket. I've missed it so much - it's just like having a little bit of home to curl up in.
I love you all a ton and hope to send you some pictores haha I'm trying to figure it out. HUGS AND KISSES TO EVERYONE. Read your scriptures and smile :)