It Came Off Like a Cheap Bandaid

And a adorable sister who started out her mission with a ROUGH companion. I’ve adopted her. Her name is Colquewanca, and hugs me frequently, so of course I love her as well. 3.30.15

3.30.152 3.30.153

A mini replica of a moto car that mama frida got me. she hugs me a lot.

Mother,

My dear Mother. I’m writing you all for the last time, and I feel. . . strangely calm. I’m not freaking out. I’m not hyperventilating. I do have a strange pit in my stomach, but I’ve lathered it with a thick layer of denial, and left it alone. I hope—

Lies. I just read my itinerary that the mission just sent us, and it appears to have ripped off the denial and it came off like cheap Band-Aid. Dying. I’m dying. What am I doing? How am I possibly getting on a plane and what if I never see all these people again? You know what I don’t like doing? Loving people. Loving people is so overrated, and complicated, and makes my insides do things that aren’t okay. Ugh. I want to sit down and cry and also maybe dance because I’m going to hug you for the first time in months and months and I don’t like this.

It appears that I’m in a state of internal conflict. Getting along with other people is hard enough, but getting along with myself should be a God-given gift.  But, chiste, natural man.

On the bright side, I have Keith and patches of kale to look forward to.

Okay. I have to compose myself. Alexandra and Jose got baptized this week, and they just glowed they were so happy. Yesterday they both bore their testimonies in church, and I was trying to suck back in the tears from behind the piano. I feel they have been my blessing. This area has been hard, and it was difficult not to be sad sometimes, but they came along and climbed over all the obstacles and problems and now they’re here, spirutal babies, but hold all the keys in their hands in order to keep going.

Andres, a young man in the area, was also baptized Saturday. He’s a whipsharp little thing, though he looks the usual teenage rebel, but he loves learning, and is already dragging family members behind him to church. To us they had little interest in listening to, but to him, they all follow and obey. He’s going to do marvelous things, I’m sure of it.

They are all that I’ve ever wanted in the mission. They’re people who love living the gospel. I choose to believe that they will remain active and participants of the gospel. We’ve worked so hard with the members too so that they know of their existence, and I hope the very, very best for them.

I suppose my work is done here, and while that hurts in a way that I don’t know how I’ll ever explain, I guess I need to accept it.

Ugh.

I hope there’s piping hot lasagna awaiting my return, because I’m sure it’ll be the only thing to soothe my aching heart. But also, I like lasagna. Yum.

Hna. Compton

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La Penultima Carta

Albert

albertOrianaMelody

the daughter of my pensionista, Oriana. 

she found out i’m horrifically ticklish and it’s been a rough time ever since
i have to choose between eating or facing the flipping tickle monster
but ps the oriana is so very loved

iquitos3.23.15

also my heart hurts every time i pass this sign now because nooooooooooooooooo

Dearest Mother,

This is my penúltima carta. I literally have no idea how to say that word in English.

This week was chaos. We had a family get married—Alexandra y Jose. They’re fantastic souls. Young, but super excited about the gospel. They have a small, adorable son named Albert. Well, his full name is Dir Albert. Literally. Not even a joke.

Hna. Reyes—or Sister Kings—is my companion. She’s a lithe, little Ecuadorian who doesn’t talk much, but is a good little missionary. She’s almost got seven months in the mission, and I’m the second companion that she’s ‘killed.’

I would love to fly out to see spencer and Aurora and, my, oh, my, New York. But no promises. It’s a cool idea. Spencer looks…balder. . .than the last time I saw him. But he’s definitely lost weight. Does he get letters? Can I send those to him via e-mail or by hand? Packages? How does this work? I’d like to send him something. I miss him a lot, actually. I hope he’s doing well over there.

My heart does this painful little shuttery thing every time I think about going home—have in excitement and half in horror. But hey

HEY! MOM! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

I literally just remembered, mid-sentence. If I was there, I’d totally take you out to the chocolate and eat fattening, delicious things. But alas, you’ll have to eat it without me and I’ll stick with my rice with a side of fries. Sigh.

Love you all lots,

Nos vemos en un ratito

denial-and-repression tactic; mud, grit, and other things

AMAZONIQUITOS

MEL3.16.15

Dear Mother,

I’m not going to be writing much this week because I’ve been wasting time scrambling through old-sent photos and trying to get them all together. Blech. It hasn’t been all that enjoyable, to be honest.

But this week went well. We have a family that’s getting ready to be baptized the 28th. They’re wonderful, but I don’t feel like it’s been for any reason whatsoever on our part. They were just there, like they were waiting for the gospel to come knocking on their door. The worst part of this whole ordeal is that they live atop Mount Doom and it’s been raining at least once a day this month. On the bright side, we’re toning our balance muscles. But goodness, the mud, grit, and other things that I walk in all day. Almost nothing grosses me out now though.

Joy finally wrote me. She’d been on about a month streak without writing me. But she sounds like she’s a little social bug and 14—14! This I cannot believe. I remember when I was 14. I was pretty sure I was a legal adult at 14.

I heard about a sister missionary from Utah that died in Argentina the other day—a case of unexpectedly strong E. Coli. It had me jittery for an afternoon, and I was thinking about my heath in the mission. I’ve been blessed with what appears to be the immune system of an ox, for which I’m quite grateful. The worst I’ve come down with is the stomach flu for a day, but nothing of serious weight has happened to me, while many sister have struggled or gone home for serious

problems.

I’ll tell you, one of the things that I’ve really learned to love here in Colinas is the stake building. I love—love, love, love—being in the stake center Sunday nights. You can feel the warm bustle of deadlines and organization and meetings and service, and I feel something so very special to be in the midst of all that. I plan on demanding the bishop a calling upon returning home—I would love to teach small, bratty children the gospel. It’d be a nice change from hardened, bitter old people. Or whatever calling they’re willing to give me. Just to be able to sit and bask in the glow of service and spirit. It’s literally the thing I’m most excited about when I think about coming home.

I’ve been using the denial-and-repression tactic upon thinking about going home, actually.  So. I’m just going to leave it at that.

Love, Hna. Compton

Thanks for looking through all my photos. It’s sort of a pain, I know. But the mission asks for 5 before, 5 during, and 5 baptisms. Can you do me another favor and search through and find all my pictures of baptisms that i’ve sent home? I don’t have the time or access to get to them. Pwuease.

I’m just going to pretend that I’m not actually coming home

Mother, you know I love you to bits and pieces,

But you appear to have picked the grainiest, most awkward faces I’ve ever made in my life. I literally laughed at some of them, and I love them, but I don’t wish to scar my mission president with my past life of picture-bombing. Please try again? I’m sorry, but I’m laughing right now. Mom. Wat?

Anyways, the works going good. We have a little family that’s going to be baptized the 28 of March. They’re adorable. They already want to go to the temple. I told them I’d fly down in a year to going to their sealing, and it wasn’t even a lie.

My new companion is from Ecuador. Her name is Hermana Reyes. I like her.

A lot of things have happened this week—for example, was homeless for half a week—but I feel like it’s all sort of escaping my grasp. The less time I have the faster it’s going by and I don’t like that at all, so I’m just going to pretend that I’m not actually coming home. It could either be less painful or twice as painful, not sure which.

But tell Joy that I’m sorry no one came to her birthday party. I know how that one feels, but I totally would’ve been there I was on that side of the world. As I’m not, I just wrote a little note in my agenda saying JOY on her birthday. Oh, and my companion drew two balloons and crazy eyes. Let her know that she’s loved, and that I’ve bought trinkets for her to give her in a month.

Hey, I sent a few letters home about a month back. Did you guys ever receive those? Or did they get lost in the air?

I still eat a the pensionista’s house. Last night it was tacos—second time in 17 months—and the night before that fried banana chips with a fish hamburger. I think I’m putting back on the pounds I’d managed to get off. Ugh. Oh, well. I’ll survive.

Hna. compton