Monday, March 23, 2015

Happy Spring everybody!

Can't believe it is already here!?! We are almost already done with’s crazy! Time flies when you are having fun I guess.

Spring showers for days over here. Gotta love the Oregon rain!

Today we have exciting things planned for p-day! I AM GOING BACK HOME! TO THE HOOD!

We are going with a lot of other missionary's on a hike over at Mt. hood. I'll make sure that I take photos. ;) We will then also hit Calamity Jane’s (best restaurant out in the hood) and Joe's doughnuts (best doughnuts in Oregon!). We are in for an amazing day!

This week has been a whirlwind of emotions for me! Life has its ups and downs...where to begin...

So the meds that I am on for my headaches have helped my headaches be less painful, BUT it makes me zombie-like. I get pale in the face, looks like I don't sleep, feel exhausted all the time, and it makes me depressed. (never, ever, take Cymbalta!) Since I hate what the meds do to me, I didn't take them on Saturday or Sunday and have already felt the difference, but it came with a price...the headaches feel worse. My migraine was so bad, that on Sunday I only went to sacrament meeting and then went back to the apartment and slept for the entire day. The wonderful ward and sister missionary's that are in my district treated me with some Dr. Pepper to help with the headaches. Although soda makes me feel terrible inside, it does help take the edge of the pain off. It is crazy! Motions, lights, sounds...everything sets off my was miserable, BUT I don't have to go through the pain alone. I have felt Christ lift me up and help me in so many ways! He NEVER leaves us!

Also on the downside of this week was when one of our investigators was rushed into the hospital because she went into labor 4 months early. Early Friday morning we went to the hospital and gave her a blessing. After I gave the blessing I got this feeling that she was going to lose her baby . . . In a matter of hours she gave birth to a baby boy who only lived for 3 hrs. She named the baby Rhett Lynn Alstott. I was able to see the baby. It was an emotional experience for me, but I knew that the baby was in God’s hands. It lived, received his body and then peacefully passed. He was needed on the other side. I felt bad for Tasha...she has been having a hard time with it. She wanted us to come back to the hospital later that night and we got permission from our president to go there to visit and comfort her in her time of need. We didn't leave the hospital until 1 in the morning. It was great though...we were able to cheer her up a bit. So grateful for the knowledge that we have that families are forever and that we will be able to live with our loved ones again through the atonement of Jesus Christ. 

On the upside, I was able to go BACK to the temple on Saturday for an endowment!!! I have been so lucky! In the past month I was able to go to the temple for someone’s endowment 5 times! The work is so great! Anyways, I was able to go back for a special lady that is close to my heart. Marilyn! I taught her when I was in my first area, Estacada! She has come a long way and I was sooo proud of her.  It has been such the experience to watch someone learn and grow in the gospel. I had an emotional moment at the temple. I love the beautiful spirit that is in the temple! 

Elder Olsen and I are united AGAIN! Haha! I love this guy! We both worked together along with the Petersons and other missionary's to help Marilyn accomplish her goal...that is the Temple!

Still trying to get to know ALL of the members here...there is soooo many!! It is so exciting! 

Also, a tender mercy from the Lord, we were able to get a car! It helps a ton to get around especially when I don't feel that great. I can just lean back and shut my eyes when we are traveling to an appointment whenever I get a headache. Nothing will stop me now!!!! ;) Just trying to build up the area. The work is slow, so we are trying to find more people to teach. Just doing my best everyday...that’s all I can do sometimes. 

This past week I was also able to meet with President Ballard. He was worried about me and my health. He is such an awesome guy. I told him how I was feeling and got emotional a bit. He told me that he prayed and received confirmation that if I wasn't wearing a helmet when I had my bicycle accident that I wouldn't be here today . . . it really hit me hard. Life is so precious. You could be living and doing great one day and the next you could be gone. It really showed me how delicate life is and how we never know when we will pass on, so we need to be ready to meet our master. It gives me the motivation to do my best every day . . . we just never know when we will leave this earth so we need to make sure that we are doing our best everyday and serve others that are around us. This trial has been extremely difficult for me because as a missionary I just want to give of myself so much. I don't want to have to think of myself, but I have learned that I need to take care of myself first, before I can help others. D&C 4: "Therefore, O ye that embark in the service of God, see that ye serve him with all your heart, might, mind, and strength..." It has been hard to take a couple of breathers when I just want to do so much good...I didn't come out here to rest. I came out here to work! Anyways, I have learned that it is ok, even good, to take a break sometimes and to not be so hard on myself. I am so grateful for my Savior! The atonement doesn't just cover our sins, but it strengthens us through our times of pain and heartache. I know that our Savior, Jesus Christ Lives and love each one of us so much. Discover him and embrace him!

I hope all of you have had a wonderful week and I wish you all the best for this coming week! Always remember who you are! Never quit...although you may need to take a breather at times never give up! The Savior is on your side! :)

Love you all!

All my love,
Elder Shaw

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