My dearest Mother,
I hear rumors of you guys coming to pick me up. This would be fantastic. I could introduce you to my five or six Peruvian Moms that have adopted me. The great thing is that I haven’t actually gone outside of Iquitos in my entire mission, so we don’t have to hop to either Trapoto or Pucallpa to show you all the people I love. But we’ll see. I know how these out of country plans go. Remember the would-be France trip? So close, yet so far.
Also, this Saturday my bishop called to confirm that I would still be playing piano in sacrament—I swear I’ve got heart palpitations thanks to Sunday meetings now—and that I’d also be giving a talk in Sacrament. Oh, how the nerves and nausea set in. I don’t like talking in Church in English. Worse todovia in Castillano. I swear I was going to pee my pants on the way to church so very, very nervous. But then there was a moment, between my house and the church, when I was praying profusely, and God was like, ‘Where is your faith?’ And I had my testimony builder moment where I remember that fear is the absence of faith, and I felt it. I love feeling things. I felt my faith move in and scatter all the panic and nerves until there was only a light calmness.
So I got to church and I played the piano and it was much less-terrible than last time, and I gave my talk and I only stumbled on one or two words and it didn’t even matter. There was still that peace and I just felt happy. Like denial, but better.
You’d think with more than a year in the mission, I would’ve figured that one out a lot sooner.
So I went home that Sunday still rolling around this new, shiny part of my testimony, observing it and all the things that it now means. Fear is the absence of faith, and it’s when we stop believing that God is at our side to help us. I thought about all my Going Home Fears that I have and how I so worry about who I’ll be when I get back, and I plugged in my new Faith vs. Fear theory, and I now feel a lot better about all said preocupaciones.
I now believe all light bulb moments are actually the Spirit gently hitting us over the head. So wonderful.
Apart from that, we continue working in my area. This exchange is already more than half-way up. The weeks go by so quickly, and I’m losing track of my days. My spelling is getting worse, my Spanish better. I ate a Juane—things wrapped in tree leaves and boiled—de fish eggs the other day. I’m horrified to report that it tasted delicious, but was bad for my conscience.
My companion remains adorable. She completed a year this week. We ate way too much cake.
Which reminds me. Also on a failing diet. Oops.
Until next week,