So today I FINALLY turned in my mission papers!! EEEKKKK!!! I cannot believe this is really happening. I guess I should probably give a bit of a background story to this. Right? :)
My whole life I never really ever thought about going on a mission. It was always at age 21 that girls could leave and let's be honest, I knew that I would not want to leave that late. I just knew my choice already. Then in October 2012, the mission age changed to 18 for young men and 19 for young ladies. When I heard this announcement, I thought it was incredible! Boys can leave earlier and girls can leave earlier! That was so cool and just awesome for so many out there wanting to serve! For me, I started to consider the thought a little bit. I just said, "If I feel like I should go at that time, then I'll go."
A few months later my sister Holly received her call to the San Pablo, Philippines mission. I was beyond excited for her! But by this point, I had made my decision that I was NOT going on a mission. People would always ask, "So, are you gonna be like your sister and go too?" To be honest, I was super bugged that people kept asking me. I was inconsiderate and rude and got upset. Why couldn't I just be Robyn and make my own life choices? Let's just say that was a weird time for me.
Later that year, 2013, I went to Belize to help build a school. That experience was a crazy one at that! I had some amazing opportunities to meet the most humble people ever and know what it is like to serve others 24/7 for 2 weeks. After the first week though, I got REALLY homesick. Like, really homesick! To the point where I just wanted to go home. I didn't care. Then a really good friend of mine on the trip helped me realize something really important. I was there to serve others. It wasn't about me for those 2 weeks. It was about providing the children of Corozal, Belize with a better school. That's when it really hit me that I was being selfish and needed to focus my attention on others and not myself. I finished what I started and ended up not wanting to come home in the end! I grew to love it so much. Once I was home though, the thought of a mission was still a definite no. I thought, "I got so homesick in Belize for just 2 weeks! How on earth could I do a mission for 18 months!?".
I then moved to Mesa in June for school. Moving to Mesa was so AWESOME! I loved it the minute I moved down here. In August, about the time I started school, the thought of a mission hit me really good. It was just like a little push from the spirit saying, "Hey. You should go on a mission". I instantly was just like, nah. I'll think about it more. Then November came and I had been praying about a mission for a while then. I can remember the moment when it was like AH HA! I am going on a mission! I was praying one morning and the spirit was so overwhelming that I just knew. I was going to serve a mission! The thought was so exciting and just made me so happy. My family was VERY shocked though. Just a few months previous I was so against going on a mission. I guess that the Lord just had better plans for me :) So in November I started my mission papers. This is when life got really tricky. I was exposed to many things that I had never been exposed to in my life. So many temptations came flooding my way that I never thought I would have to face. I am not going to sugar coat this at all and say it was so easy to just fill them out and turn them in. It was HARD. There came a time about 3 weeks ago where every other day I was saying no to going. I can honestly say that Satan was trying his hardest. He did not want me to turn my papers in and was trying everything to get me to change my mind. Also, my papers got delayed by about 2 months because of some medical problems. It was not an easy time and I was frustrated. Honestly, so frustrated that I couldn't handle it and almost just gave up.
Well, low and behold, I got through it all! One day, about 2 weeks ago, I decided to go to the temple and do baptisms. It had been a good month and half since the last time I had gone. There, another big confirmation came to me that I needed to go. Nothing was going to stop me! And so with the help of family and friends (you know who you are) I FINALLY got to the end! Or the beginning I guess you could say! :) I finished my papers all the way, met with my bishop, and then today met with my stake president.
Today was still a crazy day though. This morning I found out that my sweet Grandpa Burnham had passed away in the night. My Grandpa was the most patient and caring man I had ever known. He loved Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father so much and always had the spirit with him. My Grandpa was such a hard worker and to the point where he never had one single weed in his garden! :) My Grandpa also had the best raspberries. Haha! When I found this out this morning though, I was honestly quite upset. It really hit me that I would not see my Grandpa until the next life. And then it really hit me. I would see my Grandpa again!!! How wonderful is that!?! This isn't the end! And, my Grandpa was finally with his sweetheart looking down on all of us! This was even MORE of a confirmation to go on a mission. I want EVERYONE to know that families can be together forever and that you will see your loved ones again. How incredible is this knowledge?!! After this, I drove the 30 minute drive to my stake presidents house and had the BEST interview I have ever had before. So many wonderful things were said and President Smith was just fantastic!
So around 1:00 p.m. today, February 2, 2013, my mission papers were sent to Salt Lake City, Utah! Oh my goodness. I cannot even describe the joy that I feel right now. I cried tears of happiness the whole drive home. And I swear the sun was shining brighter today :) I know that the gospel changes lives in the most unexpected ways! And I know that the Lord has a way better plan for us than we do. He knows us all individually and loves us all so much. He wants to see us succeed and to serve everyone around us. I love this gospel and I can't wait to dedicate 18 months of my life to the Lord.
Have a wonderful Sabbath Day everyone and remember the great blessings in your life! And in about 2 weeks, I'll let ya'll know where I go! Don't forget to guess where I'll go :) Write your guesses on my Facebook! I LOVE YOU ALL!!!