Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Ukukula (ook-ah-koo-la)

Ukukula (ook-ah-koo-la): Infinate Growth in Zulu

This past weekend I had the opportunity, like every other RM, to go to my mission reunion! This was the second one my mission president put on since being home. I was at the first one, and I'm going to share that experience:

I had mixed feelings on the day of Oct 3rd 2014. I wanted to see my trainer, and she had just returned home. And I wanted to see my mission president and his wife. That was it. I did not want to see any other missionaries. I had only been home 4 months at that point so most of the missionaries I knew were still out. But like my trainer they were slowly starting to come home, and I was so ashamed of myself still.

One of my fellow sisters helped me get out and go. But the whole hour drive to Salt Lake I felt sick with worry. When we got there I felt like everyone, whether they knew I was home early or not, were looking at me like I shouldn't be there. We ate and chatted, but I felt fake and like I was an unwanted and uninvited guest. I should point out that absolutely nobody made me feel that way except myself, everyone was super nice. I just was judging myself super harshly, telling myself I was an outsider.

That night we stood up as RM's with our mission president to say our standing quotes (sorta like our mission mantra) It is pretty long, but I forgot the whole thing! It was completely gone (the first sign that my Alzhimers symptoms were kicking in). I started crying while everyone around me proclaimed how they "loved tough things" Etc. I felt even more embarrassed, if I hadn't driven my friend I would have left, I know I would have, right then and there. After that we were to go up to talk to President and Sister Holm, my mission president and his wife. When I got up there Sister Holm started asking me about Lyme Disease, and how long treatment would last. And President took me in a big hug and almost shaking me said "You are a real return missionary sadie! You are a finisher! I hope you know that!"

I started to cry then. Because I think I wanted to believe him, but I knew I wouldn't let myself. I felt like I needed to punish myself. That I deserved to feel miserable, because I still thought at that point that I could have done more to stay. I just nodded and said my usual "Yes sir." If I would have let believe him, I would have saved myself a lot more tears, and so much more shame. But the depression and shame spoke louder than my desire to believe my mission president.

Then, fast forward to this past weekend. I went again, only everyone that I had served with is home! And most of them were going to be there. I was pumped. I was excited to see my mission president and his wife to show them that I wasn't a big mess anymore! To show them how improved I was.

It is so much easier to see improvement when you have something specific to compare it to. My mission reunion last year compared to this year is a perfect example of my improvement. I wasn't at all afraid to talk to any of the missionaries, and a bunch of them asked how I was doing and I was able to explain that I was still sick, but had improved so much! For the first time I felt like I had made progress. When you can see it and feel it, it gives you so much hope!

After my mission reunion I can now see all the progress, and growth and I think it has helped me move past a lot and continue to get better and strive for constant INFINITE GROWTH!

-The Lyme Warrior