Am I ready to leave? Easiest answer of my life YES! I have hundreds of stories for y'all about how bitter sweet the MTC has been for me (wayy more on the sweet side by the way I've loved here to be sure) but I think the few that I share should be enough haha.
So you know how I entered the MTC three days after my birthday? You remember that right haha? Well one of the Elders in my district turned 18 a week before me and came right after graduating high school or a month later anyway. Well one day he and I were talking as we were doing district study instead of companionship study. In other words, he and I were studying while our companions threw skittles over one of the little overheads at the MTC and tried to catch them in their mouths. ANYWAYS we were outside and all of a sudden it came to me that...wait for it..we're both going to be 19 when we get home from our missions!! Hahah how's that for an age change? Everyone will be like so when are you putting your papers in and I'll be like "I hit up the mish actually." We ended up telling everyone we met that we were going to be 19 when we got home and one girl either yelled back "You're my C.O.W.!" (Crush of the week) or "Holy Cow". We're not really sure which, but I'm putting my money on the first one ;)
Funny story about gum: Right after I told you to send me gum I realized that we aren't allowed to chew gum in public as missionaries or at all in the MTC. HAhah so thank you so much for all of the gum, but its probably going end up being a bribe to little kiribati kids to answer my questions in lessons! Which is still helpful! But really thank you and everyone who has sent me stuff it really means a lot, and I try and always respond to letters with another letter. If I haven't, let me know and I would love to write one!
Okay Spiritual moment:
You know how Elder Andersen came and spoke at the devotional on Tuesday? Well It was seriously one of the best experiences for me at the MTC and I have had some an amazing experiences so that is really saying something. Mom you were so lucky to have him as your mission president. One of the things he talked about is how the feelings of the Holy Ghost bring about a desire to do whatever it is the Lord asks of you and let me tell you that is so true. I never have a moment when I am not at least trying or think or wanting for me and others to do what is right. Another thing he discussed is "How sweet the day will be when..." I took off the last part so it can apply to anything. He said when you don't think you can go any farther just think of how sweet the day will be when... and it will give you strength and determination to continue to press on. Trst me, I have already used and learned to love that saying, and also another saying "How much do I love MY God." Both of these have been so inspirational in my life and have helped me to work much harder than I should have been able to.
During the devotional Elder Andersen read some letters to the France mission president after a recent missionary conference he had in Southern France. I wanted to know so badly if he would read from a letter Jacob sent because he wasn't saying the names of the missionaries whose letters he read...after one letter in particular I just felt a feeling of confirmation so strong come upon me and I knew that the letter that was being read was Jacob's. I think it talked about how he had a spiritual experience and it wasn't "weird." That was amazing for me and from that point on all I wanted to do was go and shake Elder Andersen's hand, but despite all of my efforts I didn't get the chance and I was feeling pretty disappointed afterwards. I knew that there was a reason for it though and I shared that in our after devotional district meeting. After the meeting, the front office called my name and asked me to go to the front desk. I went and you can imagine my surprise and gratitude and awe as I opened a package from Elder Andersen's daughter. That was a miracle to me and I will never forget it. Especially since my teacher promised my companion and I a miracle in our zone if we were obedient. You could say I didn't need the miracle, but it sure was a tender mercy. The whole night was one of peace and of the Spirit and I wish that you all could have been there.