Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Sister Lamb Learns a Little Bit about Patience and Blowing Snow While Blowing in the Wind in Nebraska

Dear Family,

Look at that! I actually put a subject in the subject line this week. Pretty impressive, I know. The email system always asks me before I send an email if I want to put anything in the subject line and I always decline, but I thought I would try something new this week.

I usually bring my planner or journal with me when I email so that I can look through it so I know what to write, but I don’t have either this week, so I am just doing this off the top of my head. Hopefully I don’t forget anything very important.

Last week, I walked into Saturday morning training at the Trail Center and one of the senior elders told me an interesting story. His brother, I think, had died and he and his wife had gone back to Utah for the funeral. While they were in the church building, they were looking around while there was nothing going on and found themselves looking at the missionary plaques. Guess whose they found? Mine! How crazy is that? Out of all the buildings in Utah, even in Sandy, Utah, they were at our ward building, looking at my missionary plaque. It was kind of funny, a little weird.

I have learned a little something in the last little bit about snow. Out here, the snow is very different. When it first starts snowing, it doesn’t stick or melt, it just blows around on the ground. It’s very pretty, until it eventually sticks to the roads and is ice. Even just a 1/4 inch of snow on the ground can mean some serious ice. Last week, the cars were grounded by the snow. In Utah, we would hardly think it was anything, but here the roads were very slick. We had about an hour warning before the cars would be grounded, so we quickly started for our apartment so we would not be stuck in the area for the night. The normally 20 minute drive to our apartment took over an hour. We saw several slide offs and accidents. The nice part was that we got to drive through a very pretty part of town because we were avoiding the highways. We drove past UNO campus. In the neighborhoods around the campus, the houses are gorgeous. They are all old and cozy looking. It was great. We also listened to several conference talks.

Sister Askren has still been sick this week. We are doing the best we can with the situation, but we are just confused about why this is taking so long to resolve. It looks like she now has an eye infection. The Watsons are taking her to the doctor's office today. The difficult part is that we just don’t understand what we are supposed to be doing. Anything we are supposed to be learning from this, we feel like we have learned. The work needs to go forward, but it is moving pretty slowly under the circumstances. I keep looking at the calendar and noticing how far into this transfer we are getting. Then I look back at how little we have been able to accomplish, and almost panic a little. At the same time, it is what it is. We can't change the situation; we can only do as much as we can with what we have right now. I have been doing my best lately to make things happen and to be out doing missionary work, even if it is not in our area or I am in a threesome. It is what it is. I have a feeling that the reason that Sister Askren and I are companions is because anyone else would be going crazy if they were in the situation right now. I don't know if that is a good thing or a bad thing that it seems I am the one for the job.

On Sunday, I went to church with the West Maple Sisters. It was really bizarre not being in my ward. Then I spent the rest of Sunday and Monday morning with the Old Mill sisters in their area. I realized two things. One, I love talking to people. People are all so unique and each person has a story to tell. I could just sit and listen to people and learn about their experience all day. Unfortunately, while we do get to meet lots of people and learn about them, we aren't really able to do it to the extent that I would like. Second, I have spent enough time on exchanges that I am starting to feel comfortable in their areas. While I was with the Old Mill Sisters, I recognized many sections of their areas and I know many people in the West Maple Ward.

SO, such is life lately. I just kind of go wherever the wind blows me. (As long as I am with at least one other missionary). My plans can change on a moment’s notice, which makes it pretty difficult to plan ahead. But, we keep going. I don't know where the time goes, but it goes somewhere. I am trying to be patient and "cheerfully flexible" as Randy Boothe would say. There is a reason that this is the way that things are going right now, but I have no idea what that is. One day I will figure it out.

Love you! Love you Lots and lots!
Love, Sister Melly

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