Maayong Buntag My Dear Family!!
I hope you are all doing well, it's been a crazy week here in the Philippines. It's been a hard week, but the work moves forward.
I promise to email pics first so I make sure you get them, and then I will email family privately and then do my weekly email. I think I won't be so scatterbrained with a plan like this!
One thing I forgot to tell you last week, is that we are all JUST FINE from the earthquake. We were with Pres. Schmutz when the earthquake hit and it kinda felt like we were walking on a ship. I have never experienced an earthquake before but there was no damage where I am at. However, the angel Moroni spun all around and is facing the wrong direction. Crazy! There have been a lot of after shocks and we do feel them, but they don't last long. I hope my friends in Cebu East Mission are doing ok, especially those serving in Bohol where the earthquake hit.
These are the highlights for the week, the good, the bad, and the important stuff!
I will start with the bad: I have been quite sick. Saturday to Monday, and part of Tuesday. I have been diagnosed with Vertigo and I have been very dizzy all the time. This is something that could last my whole mission, or just a few weeks, or so, or until I adjust to the Philippines. I have been learning to deal with it. I just hate the spinning and dizzy feeling. On Saturday, I literally could not stand. Now, I am able to work and am doing better. It really discouraged me though. because I was unable to work, and as a missonary, the not being able to work is the hardest thing. I felt like I was paralyzed. I can't talk with these people, and I don't know what they are saying to me, and now I can't even walk straight and be a missionary!! But, I am doing better now. The mission doctor, and sister Schmutz, and the mission counselor have been great to me. I did talk to the mission counselor, because while I was feeling so sick, it gave me a lot of time to think, and I was really starting to miss America and my family so much that it physically hurt. I also had some anxiety during this time. But, I will tell you, I WILL not stop, and I WILL NOT QUIT, this work is soooo important to me! I know this is where I need to be, so please keep me and my health in your prayers. I am already seeing drastic improvements with my dizziness.
So, opening an area comes with new challenges. Like arranging our apartment. We just received our fridge only a few days ago. That morning was really hard for me. Most mornings, I am grumpy, and I struggle a bit until we actually go outside and go to work. This particular morning, I was sooo thirsty, and I just wanted a COLD drink of water. I prayed to Heavenly Father and told him how thirsty we were, and how water would be so nice to have. Within the hour, the Elders showed up with our fridge. I was able to enjoy a nice, ice cold, filtered glass of water. :) Tender mercy.
While I was sick, I received a blessing for my recovery and it was a blessing given to me which was all in Cebuano. I did understand a little, but the Spirit was so strong. I know Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers. I just wanted to feel better.
It's so cute how so many of the branch members are very concerned about my dizziness. I don't know how they even know about it, but Sister Reyes, our landlord, and the RS President said she has been praying to the "mighty Lord Jesus" and doing the cross thing that I would get better. Needless to say, we are teaching her this week. :)
This comming Monday, is election day in Sibonga. Not sure how much work we will be able to get done, it's quite crazy. The RS pres, is running for counselor to the mayor. Kinda funny. She is the sweetest and oh how I love her.
Last night, we out to work for the first time since I have been sick, and people always stop and stare at us. No one hardly ever comes up to us to talk, they just stare at us, but there was this mom and her daughter who came right up to us, and we talked in a bit of Cebuano and English. The daughter is interested in the church, and so we are going back to teach her. He name is Christina and she is awesome.
When I am down, and having a hard time, and missing things in America, without fail I always hear a Justin Bieber song, or One Direction song, or Britney Spears song, and I know it sounds silly, but it makes me happy and think of America.
MOM, those daisy post it notes, are a life saver! I use them all the time! Thank you!!
Also, my sweetest sister Miss Allie Sue, colored me a pic and it says, "Sisters Forever, even if we are 2700 miles apart!" I hang it by my bed, and I look at it every day and every morning. It is so true! I love you forever, and never forget that. Stay close to the Lord always, He is always there for you!! I pray many times a day for you all.
Sister Joslyn Harris