Hi Family and Friends,Well, this is it! I can hardly believe it. Let me tell you, there are so many mixed emotions right now. I'm so excited, scared, nervous, happy, grateful, sad, hungry, anxious and everything else you can think of! It's been quite an adventure to say the least. Monday was hard, every time I thought about going home, my stomach just hurt really bad and I didn't want to eat anything, but people kept feeding us so that was hard.
I'm a bit torn. During this Christmas season, hearts turn to God. Christmas as a missionary is the greatest thing in the world. I am sad I won't be a set apart missionary this Christmas. Of course, I get to be with my family so that is exciting. It's just different, a piece of my heart will definitely be here in New York and Connecticut forever. I love this place, I love these people, I love being a missionary.
I have loved every second of my mission though, even when things were hard. It has all been so worth it.
First off, little about this week.. It was crazy so I can't remember much right now, but here are a few things..
So we were getting worried about them because they were never meeting with us but then we got a 13 page text from Bridget at 12:35 on Thursday night pretty much just saying how they aren't ignoring us or anything, it's just that their work schedules have been super busy but that they still want to keep learning. So that was good! I got to see them on Monday too and they are still as cute as ever. I got to give them a Book of Mormon that I marked up for them and wrote in and all that good stuff so that was good too. I still love them.
1. This Ward is getting elders back! Yay, that will be good. We need it because we have a lot of male investigators right now and it's hard to teach them. So that will be cool. And sister Standage found out she will be the STL for this area so that's sweet too!
2. Yesterday and Monday we got fed about 4000 times. No joke. Like it was bad. Everyone we went to gave us some dessert or full course meal. How kind.. Haha
3. I hurt my back picking up my suitcase. Bummer right? Like it kills. It's all good though, I guess that's how you know your suitcase is too heavy! Idk what's in there, I thought I was bringing like nothing home. I still have room too, it's just heavy journals and scriptures I guess.
4. We had dinner with Melva and Lucas and Linda and their whole family! It was so much fun! They made it super fancy and special and we took some pictures so ill show you those tomorrow or something
Anyway, I'm going to miss this for sure. I know I will forever think about all I have learned here. It's been an incredible journey. From the good to the bad, I'll miss it all! I will miss Wearing my name tag, Being around missionaries all the time, constantly having someone by side, stressing out on pdays, writing my mission president weekly, tiwi, stressing about one hour dinner appointments, constant efy music, not having anything be about me, teaching people all day everyday, worrying about others all the time and not myself, having a district and zone to look out for and to watch over me, Smelling like smoke, Knocking on random doors all day, having those really hard days when nothing goes right and then those awesome days where God blesses you like crazy, seeing cemeteries literally everywhere, riding the subway everyday, project buildings, talking to everyone about Christ, being fed until I want to explode, nightly phone calls or texts, smelly houses, always relating things back to the restoration, Urine smelling streets, abandoned houses in Monticello, crazy people yelling at me on the daily, everyone honking their horns for no reason, no sidewalks, snow, tall buildings, billions of trees, praying with everyone, knowing all the members of the Ward and less active members, being at every Ward council, leaving with a prayer at every house, being the go to service people, longing for a relaxing preparation day, practically having a twelve course meal every night, not caring about worldly things, People wondering why my name is sister, walking up long driveways that make us out of breath, having the excuse of just being an awkward missionary, the people, New York, and Connecticut.
Some may say I didn't have any huge experiences that changed me on my mission, but I know it was the little things and that was huge to me. I am different today because I chose to serve the Lord. I know this gospel is true. I know that God called me to serve in the New York New York North mission under the direction of President Morgan as well as President Smith. I know that I needed to learn from both Presidents. I know I needed to serve in south Manhattan, Monticello, and Danbury for specific reasons. I learned so much in each area and from each companion and I know it was part of Gods exact plan. I know Joseph Smith truly did restore this gospel. He went through a lot and he did it all because of his love for God and for all of us to have the gospel and the Book of Mormon today. I know the Book of Mormon is true, and that it truly was written by prophets of God. I know it brings us closer to God and that each and every time we study from it with the Spirit, we will learn knew things. I know that Thomas S. Monson is the prophet on the Earth today. He guides us and directs us through revelation from God. I know families are eternal. I know that Jesus really did die for me and each of us. He suffered for us and was resurrected for us. I know I will see God and Christ again because of the Atonement. I know my Heavenly Father loves me and knows me. He is mindful of me. He sends angels to watch over me and help me in His work. I cannot do this work without Him and the help He sends. This gospel is incredible. I love it all. I have loved serving as a representative of Jesus Christ these past 18 months. I will never be the same because of it.
Thank you so much for all the love and support these past 18 months, it's been incredible and I wouldn't change any of it. See you tomorrow! I love you!! Xoxoxox
Sister Tanner <3
Here are all the pictures I took with people before leaving!
the young women
The Hippen Family!
The Dewitt Family
Some of the Summerhays Family
The Lopez Family
The May Family
Melva and Lucus! And their family who wanted to feed us
The Fahsbeder Family
The Rakestraw Family- Bridget, Ricky, Emery and Reece.
Crystal! and her mom, Patricia
Hilal and Tilbe
Some of the Newbolds
Edgar and Myra
The original MTC crew
we had to match for Sister Smith
Airport departing crew
from beginning to end. Sister Rasmussen
****Disclaimer: Not every picture taken is posted. I wish I could have sent every picture home but sometimes time did not allow for it. Also, sometimes the formatting did not work correctly, but I am glad you got to see a little glimpse of my mission. Thanks for reading my blog and for supporting me!