Monday, February 22, 2016

Messejana, Brazil - crazy adventures...

Hey gang!
Well last week was so rushed and crazy that I forgot to mention that we had a baptism! Aizaki, Wellington´s brother, was baptized! I sent yáll the pics and everything but forgot to mention it in my email hahaha. I love that family, though. Wellington designs really well, and he drew Rapunzel for me because I told him she was my favorite! I forgot to take a picture, but I´ll be sure to do that and send a pic next week! This week their sister, Adeline, joined in for our lesson too and she accepted a baptismal date, too! We invited her to church and when we passed by Sunday morning the 3 of them were all awake and dressed and ready to go! Aizaki was confirmed a member of the church and was given the gift of the Holy Ghost! One of Wellington´s friends who we teach actually woke up this Sunday and went with us, too (last Sunday he didn´t wake up haha)! It was a great Sunday!
Also my companion, Sister Ximenes is now Sister Takahashi! She changed her name because Takahashi is her adopted father´s last name :) Yes, he´s Japanese. Never grew up there, though! Haha
Well this transfer started out pretty differently than the others….. Tuesday I found something I didn´t want to find….in my hair…..yup..…I got lice! We had to go to the center of Messejana to take out our money because it was the day we received money, so before we left we called Sister Fusco to tell her the great news but she didn´t pick up. So we started to head to Messejana, and she called us back! We told her I picked up lice and she gave us a bunch of instructions. We had to go to the pharmacy and buy a bunch of stuff and then after that we had to wash my bedding and clothes I used recently and all that fun stuff! So that would have been fine EXCEPT when we arrived at the bank, our money hadn´t come! Other missionaries were there too and they had called the assistants and apparently it was something with Salt Lake. So we didn´t have money to buy the products, so we had to call Sister Fusco back and she told us to head to the mission office and Elder Biehl (senior couple) would buy it for us. So we went, told them what was up, he went to buy our supplies, returned, delivered it to us, and we headed back to Messejana. When we arrived, we started the treatment! Sure enough, I had lice! Lol I don´t know why I´m telling you all this because it´s honestly mortifying butttt hey, it happens to lots of missionaries here. So after all the nasty was cleaned out of my hair (thanks to my wonderful companion who combed through all my hair!), we headed out to get a little missionary work done (by this time it was past 5 pm!). Then the next day, in the morning, we were sent to the SALON!!!!!! Sister Fusco sent us there to get inteligence´s…I don´t know what the translation for that is in hair terms but it made my hair more straight and suuuper silky! It´s still pretty straight and silky even now :) And while we were there, we got a little haircut too :) The guy who cut my hair was sooo great omg hahaha and so funny! He suggested a cut to make my hair less heavy and board-like. He cut a little fringe from the front to the ends! I was reeeeeaaaaalllly nervous because I want my hair long again and didn´t want to cut a lot off but I really like it! And he only cut a little bit of the ends, so I still have my length :)
Sister R. Santos and I met this family the week before who at night are always sitting outside their house and now Sister Takahashi and I are starting to narrow down who really cares and who doesn´t in the family haha. We seem to find more success in the kids, though! Some of them are soo cute! There´s this one boy, Mateus, who looks like an American! He´s more white than the others and has blond hair and he´s just adorable! Kids are pretty tough because they´re always unsure about things haha but they´re great, nonetheless. Another boy, Daniel, used to go to our church in the past with his mom, Gardenia, which was neat to find out!

Also, this week I had my first breakdown. I cried for the first time since I arrived here in Brasil! It was tough. I have 7 months here in Brasil (I'm past my 11 month mark in total) and I´m still a little hard on myself. I feel like I should know more, that I should be able to communicate better than I am. Sister Takahashi gave me a lot of counsel, but she´s pretty blunt, too. Haha she wants to help me, though.
Another week done. The time is flying! I can´t believe it. Soon a companion will be killing ME and I won´t even believe it! Sometimes when I think about being here in Brasil, it still gets me. I´m IN Brasil!! And some day, I won´t be. Just thinking about leaving Messejana, being transferred to another area, nearly breaks my heart! I have to choose today to be happy, to enjoy every moment, to never take any moment for granted. And to not waste my time being hard on myself or being frustrated with myself or others around me. We were meant to be happy in this life! Life is wonderful, we just need to use the right pair of eyes (I even have my father´s eyes.. Topper! [that's from the movie Hot Shots]) to see all the great things around us.

I love this life, I love the opportunities I´ve been given, to be here in Brasil, to be a missionary, a servant of the Lord, and to serve Him. I wouldn´t be doing this hard of work for anyone else but Him. Because I know it´s worth it. The worth of souls is great.  
I love my family and all my friends and everyone who supports me! Thank you for all you do!!
Have a wonderful week and try to see the good things that happen every day!
-          Sister Parks

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