Tennis and decapitated boa

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Week 47 from Guatemala

Well here we are at the end of Semana Santa…. this past week was deathly hot…. but we only lost power a few times so that is okay.

This past week nothing really happened. We tried to teach….. but it was everyones Spring Break so they were all at the beach…. and well we are not allowed to go to the beach….. so we were left with just the dogs and horses that we have in the street here….. that is pretty neat. But we are preparing a couple people for baptism this week so we got to have some good time with them. I guess we had one big adventure this past week we were walking in the street (like any other street) and I saw something weird on the side of the road in front of a little torilla place….. so I went to investigate….. and I found a boa constructer…. with its head cut off……. now I realize I am in Guatemala….. but really…. in my life…… but that was neat….. I guess……

This past week we also had interviews with our mission President. I love my mission President. He is getting ready to finish up his mission and it makes me a little sad but I know that my next President will be so wonderful. But this was my favorite interview that I have had. I learned so much from him and from his wife and from the assistants. I am coming up on 11 months in the mission and I am still learning every day how to be a better missionary….. maybe in 8 months I will get this missionary thing down.

But this week we have been able to spend a little bit more time in the streets. I have been in less pain. I am so grateful. I truly and so happy that I can work and that I have not been sick in 3 weeks. For 10 months I thought having diarhea everyday was normal….. but I guess it is not,… I have never felt so good in my life. That dang gallbladder – what a trouble. But I am doing so so so so good. Thanks for the prayers. I am like a new person and I know that in the ressurection I will get my gallbladder back and it will be without stones. I am grateful for the knowledge of the ressurection. What a blessing it is that we know our Savior lives. That is the whole purpose of this past week, to remember that our Savior lives and that through Him we can be perfected. I love my Savior.

Sorry if this letter is a little on the dull side, next week will be full of adventures and dead snakes I am sure of it! I love you all, stay happy and hope on!

Con Amor
Hermana Edwards

She is back to work!

Well my dear friends Semana Santa has finally fallen upon us (Holy Week) and it is hotter than…… well Hades. It is soooooo hot out here…. but people keep saying if you can make it through Semana Santa the rest of the weeks are cooler…… I do not know if that is true….. I will keep you updated.

This past week was a real treat. We had a quick little trip to the capital. We traveled in total 12 hours for a three minutes visit with my Guatemalan surgeon. He just looked at my little scars and said ” How white” and then sent me on my way. Well with that response I assumed that it meant that I could start working again. My comp and my zone leaders were a little hesitant but I felt up for the task. We only worked for a few hours every day. Just enough time to visit some menos activos and the people that we have dates for baptism with. But it really was a good week.

There is a family that we are working really hard with right now. THere are two girls that want to be baptized, but the grandma does not want to give permision to one of the girls because she was already baptized. This grandma is rough, as they would say here, she is a burra (female burro). She told us that she does not want to pray to know if her grand daughter should be baptized….. apostasia…… but we are working on gaining her confidence and showing her love. But through these two girls that we are trying to baptize we have found others family to teach. All of these families live very very close so we just pass from one house to the other teaching the good word. In one of these house we found, the dad has a broken leg, we committed him to coming to church and we promised to bring a taxi. So yesterday we left the house early to give Grandma Edwards some extra time to walk…. walking is still a challenge but poco a poco. And we met up with these families. Well it ends up that none of the parents were home….. man what a bummer….. but we decided to try and follow through with getting some investigadors in the chapel. And then the parents came…. so we shoved those nine people in a little taxi…… and then the grandma that is a burra she walked by and we said get in. She told us there was no space…. that is a joke…. there is always space…. so we literally puched this grandma into a taxi and then we had to run to the church because we were running a little late. We finally got to the church and found we had two more investigadors in the church….. 12 investigadors…… nunca en mi vida! But my comp and I looked likea hot mess. I do not know if you remember but it is super hot and super humid…. we were literally sweating like animals but we sat ourselves down with our primary of children and then I had to lead the music….. sweating like an animal….. we made quite the scene for our first Sunday with our ward…… but really it was something special to be able to bring a lot of people into the chapel.

Well after that mess of sweat and kids, we went to a members house to eat… and well Hermana Edwards ended up sleeping at the table. That morning just wore me out, the sweet member told me to go to sleep in one of the extra rooms she has and welp I just invited myself right into the bed and took a little nap….. it was probably the best nap of my life. After that we went to visit the converts that we have and I ended up painting her nails because she broke her leg and then I painted the nails of her dog and of her chickens and her ducks….. pretty successful nail painting party.

This past week was great. I am so grateful to work again. I love leaving the house every day to talk to every one I meet about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. What a blessing it is, truly such a grand blessing that I have. And an even greater blessing that I can do it here in Guatemala. There are some wonderful people here that have really blessed my life and made me a better person. I love Guatemala and I love being a missionary. Like always thanks for your prayers….. I need them. And I am praying for you guys as well….. maybe I do not know you but I pray for you. Know that I love you all. Keeping doing good things. Well that is all I got for this week. Have a wonderful week kiddos and keep homing on! Over and out.

Con Amor
Hermana Edwards

Ps this foto is from P day today….. we played tennis…… I did not even know that existed here in Guate!

Cabin Fever During Recovery

Well I am so grateful that we had conference this past week because if not….. this was literally the most boring week of my whole mission…. I will tell you why.

Last Tuesday I got my staples taken out….. I guess that is eventful……. but after that I received permission to return to my area. We got back to Santo Tomas and it is literallly a hot humid fire out there but I did not have permision to leave the house the whole week. We were able to go out for a couple of hours but that is all. I literally just sat in the house reading old conference Liahonas and sleeping. I lived like a house cat for a week………. I know please do not be jealous.

But thank heavens we had conference because I love conference. I cannot wait for the day that I can see conference again in person. It is so beautiful to be able to listen to a real living Prophet. I know Thomas Spencer Monson is a prophet, just like any Prophet from the Biblia o de El Libro de Mormon. He is a Prophet, chosen by God. And because we have a prophet we have revelation which is what confernce is. It is revelation that we need at this time in our lives. I love conference.. Something really neat happened before the session Sunday morning, on of my teachers from the MTC in Guate came out to see me. It was neat seeing my favorite teacher from the CCM and to be able to talk in Spanish with him. I love being a missionary.

Well honestly this week might have been boring but I had a lot of time to study. That was neat. I am so grateful to have this truth on the Earth today. I am so grateful that I can be better every day. I have so much hope through the gospel. I have faith and hope in my Savior and in my Heavenly Father and I know they have faith and hope in me because they know what I can become. How sweet is that. Well I hope you all know I am happy. I am so very happy. I love the gospel and I love teaching it in Spanish here in Guatemala. I love you all and hope that you had the opportunity to learn this past weekend from living Prophets on the Earth today! And if not repent and read their talks….. really do it – we are talking about salvation here. Well I love you all and thanks again for all of the prayers you are so wonderful and darling. Well peace and blessings and I will talk to you next Monday!

Con Amor
Hermana Edwards

Take it Out!

Well here it is – from her own mouth (keyboard). I just have to preface that she is still on some pain medication and was a little goofy. I think she must be a light weight just like her dad when it comes to pain medication. ­čÖé – I asked what she said to the first set of Elders and she has no idea – that is what scares her. She did say that the doctors thought she was pretty funny (imagine that) – oh to have been a fly on the wall. I am sure she gave them all a run for their money and that is probably why she was released so quickly.:) Thank you to everyone for your concern and prayers over the past week. I will put a couple of pictures on her blog that the mission Presidents wife sent me when I get this one posted.

Date: Mon, 31 Mar 2014 14:48:12 -0600
Subject: Take it out!

Hey you cute kids up North!

Well this past week has been quite the event/adventure. For those of you who are weekly readers you know that a week ago from today I took a quick trip to the hospital where the Doc found out that I have stones in my gallbladdder. Well that man was completely inspired. He told me there were only a few so I did not need to worry about it, but the sweet spouse of my mission President called me to the capital right away to check with another doc. This last Thursday was the day, I went in at 10 in the morning, right away they hooked me up to an IV and were taking tests. We found out that my gallbladder was full of stones and was 3 times as inflamed as it should be. The doc told me I had to take it out in the next 24 hours or we would have worse problems. So from there I got to make a call home to my mother for permision to do so and her being the saint that she is gave me permision and I was on the schedule to take out my gallbladder at 6 that night. Some of the Elders from the office came in to give me a blessing and I do not even want to know what I said to them……

Well the wonderful nurses drugged me up real nice and took me into the surgery. I asked them if my comp could be with me when I woke up and they said no…..(edited)….. so I made a hissy fit and told them that is all I wanted, so they let her come in. I do not remember waking up, but my comp told me I asked her if I was still alive and where were my stones…… well atleast I know I can talk in Spanish even when I am drugged up. That night was the roughest night of my life. I had so much pain. I just kept calling the nurses in so I could have some one with me….. I think they got sick of me by the morning. The next day I got a visit from my mission President. And I got to call the mothership again to tell her all was well. But I was so sick of being in my bed I looked at my comp and said we are going for a walk. So I pulled myself out of that bed and we went for a walk…… but little was I aware that my hospital gown was more like an apron so the back was wide open and I was just taking a walk down the hall. A sweet nurse offered me another gown to cover up my backside….. I am sure my white backside was quite the sight to see.

The last few days I have been living with another companionship of Hermanas. They all have been so kind. I honestly did not think that this little surgery could put me in so much pain but I think it is because they just stapled me shut….. those (edited)….. put a staple gun to my body…… I still do not know how they are going to take them all out…. I have hope. But honestly I am doing so well. It has not been ideal, but I have a lot of people helping me out. This past Saturday we had 2 baptisms that the Elders had to take care of and all worked out fine. I know that the prayers that are being said for me are really blessing me right now. I am still recuperating but every day I am a little bit stronger and the pain is a litle bit less.

Now for something spiritual I guess. The night that they kicked me out of the hospital I was a little nervous because the night before was rough for me, but the assistants to the President of my mission passed by to see how I was doing and to give me another blessing. It was such a sweet blessing and that Elder will never know how much it impacted me. He told me to use my time of recuperation to focus more on the Atonement of the Savior. How simple but how beautiful. Yeah I hurt but the Atonement hurt worse. I honestly just want to go back to my area and work. I want to show my gratitude for all of the blessings that Savior has given me and just work as hard as I can for these last 8 months that I get to serve here in Guate.

Well folks, I sure hope that you are all doing great. I hope you haven’t had to be stapled up like me but if you did, well we are just the coolest. Thanks for your prayers, thanks a lot. I love you all!

COn AMor
your favorite missionary without her gallbladder
Hermana Edwards

Surgery Day Update

Hello all,

Well I just received a call from the doctor in Guatemala City and he was calling to give me an update on Alyssa. He said that she does have an acute gallbladder attack (the walls are thickening and the gallbladder is enflamed with several stones) and they feel very strongly that it needs to be removed to prevent other complications. He needed to call to get permission from Jeff and I to proceed with the surgery this afternoon.

The doctor was very kind and he was there with his wife sitting bedside with Alyssa. At the suggestion and a little pressure from his wife ­čÖé – he let me talk with Alyssa for minute. ­čÖé She sounded great and at ease with the diagnosis and surgery (better than me) although I have complete faith and confidence in her doctors. She said not to worry and that she is hoping to save the stones to send home to us as a souvenir. She was even very proud of herself because she already had the IV in her arm. I asked if she passed out and she said almost but then the doctor reminded me to breath.

Dr. Cameron is a great doctor and we know his brother and sister here in Las Vegas, she has another specialty doctor that was trained in the U.S. that is doing the surgery and a final doctor that is an internist and he is making sure that there are no complications affecting her system from the dengue fever that she is just getting over and didn’t know she had until last weekend. So, they have a strong team in place taking care of and watching over her.

The doctor anticipates that she will be in the hospital for 3 days and then stay in the capitol for a week and work in a three-some until she has her follow-up with the doctor. If all goes well, which he thinks it will because she is so strong, they will send her back to the coast. I am very grateful that they are keeping her in the city for a week to observe her and keep her close to the doctors.

The doctor did tell me that she is in incredible shape and looks strong and healthy even though she has had the underlying ailments. He told me that he has heard of the work that she is doing in her area and the fact that she is opening her 3rd new area in 9 months is incredible.

Since starting this update – I have heard from Sister Watts twice and they have scheduled the surgery for 6:00 p.m. Guatemala time today. She had sent 2 Elders to the hospital to give Alyssa a blessing and she will be going to the hospital this afternoon with Pres. Watts to see Alyssa prior to the surgery. They will send me updates later today when the surgery is complete. She also confirmed that they have received all of the tests/blood work back and there are no complications from the dengue fever and she is in fabulous shape.

So, there you have it – until later, we will wait and we are so grateful for the care that she is receiving and for Alyssa’s faith and willingness to serve Lord. I don’t think she has even had a sick day down while in the mission until Sister Watts made her rest a day. ­čÖé

Thanks for all of you that expressed concern and kind thoughts since Monday’s e-mail.

Marci

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New comp, New area, New case of dengue fever

Hi Friends,

One things that I have learned this week is that everyone has a purpose here in the misión. Some people are supposed to be the leaders, others the problem causers, others the problem solvers and me the opener of áreas. This past week we got the call for changes and I was told I was staying outside of the capital. I was kind of bummed because that mean I was going to áreas that I did not want to go to. But then I got the miracle call that told me I was going to open an área in Santo Tomas. Now Santo Tomas is a branch that is in the same District as Puerto Barrios (my old área). When my leaders told me this I was sooooo happy. What a blessing that I do not have to leave my Barrios family yet. And about opening this área, that is nothing. I now have about 10 months in the misión. In that 10 months I have 4 áreas. Out of those 4 áreas I have opened 3. ANd with those 4 áreas I have had 6 companions, 4 of which are from Honduras. I think I have found my purpose, work with Catrachas and open áreas.

This past week was my first week in my new ├írea. I was so excited the first day we were just going and going and going. And in the matter of just one night I got hit with Dengue….. or in other words the bone breaking disease. Now I always questioned why it is called the bone breaking disease, I just thought people were being dramatic….. but no they arent…. it literally feels like your bones are going to break. I was hurting needless to say. But our President for our misi├│n came out this past weekend and his wife told me I had to go to bed and today she sent me to a hospital to get checked out. Now, hospitals and doctors in the States are not my thing….. hospitals and doctors in Guate and in Spanish…. worse. But all ended up okay and that doctor found out why I have so many problems with my stomach so I guess that is a blessing……

Also this past week I recieved my new name tag. My poor name tag has been through some rough times (just like my stomach) and I had to ask for a new one. And after months of waiting I finally got it only to see that it says Elder Edwards….. I guess I have the Priesthood now….. Apostasy I know. Maybe I will get a new nametag before I finish my misi├│n…… I don’t have too high of hopes.

This week has been a good one, I got a new comp and a new área. I have the chance to know new people. I learned that exact prayers bring exact answers. I prayed that I could find an opportunity to serve and that same day I found myself shoveling dirt for an hour. I love to pray what a blessing that is. I do love Guatemala. I love the people here a lot. They are special. I know that Christ himself visited this very land. Anyways, thanks for all of the prayers it means a lot. I know that I get a lot of the strength I have from the testimonies of you all. I hope you all have a wonderful happy week! Keep on hoping on!

Con Amor
Hermana Edwards

Change is coming…..

Date: Mon, 17 Mar 2014 14:32:19 -0600

Hello all you sweet people!!!

This week has been such a wonderful week, I can not help but to smile. Hermana Flores and I have worked very hard to do all that we could do and…… we have changes….. I think they are called transfers in the states. I will be changing areas but will still be out of the cap in heat that I can hardly describe. My heart hurts soooo bad to leave but I am so grateful that I can leave this area knowing that I have done some good.

This past week we had a conference with Elder Ochoa, and what an amazing conference it was. Always after those conferences we just have the desire to work a little harder, to work a little better. We were pretty darn tired after traveling for 8 hours for the conference but it was so worth it. After getting the pep talk from the our leaders we spent this week looking for people that are ready and we found 51 new investigators in one week. That is 51 people that want to listen, that want to learn. What a blessing that is.

This past week we also had a baptism. This sweet boy that I had the oportunity to teach is one of a kind. I know that every missionary says that about their baptisms….. but they don’t know me….. But this sweet boy is in the capilla 30 minutes early every Sunday to help whoever needs help. He loves to read his scriptures. And he does all of this without any support from his family. I love this boy a lot. When we were talking to his grandma and aunt about baptising him they asked me if I would be his Godmother….. well we do not really do that as Mormons…… but I was flattered nonetheless. I am so grateful to know Klevenson, He is so special to me.

But really this week was such a good week. We had a lesson in a house boat, I caught a chicken, we sang with a mariachi band, we learned more black people language, we baptized some one who is more prepared than anyone in the whole world, Elder Ochoa taught us. I am so grateful to be a missionary. I love my life, I love Guatemala, I love chickens. I love Garifunas, I love being a missionary. My heart hurts that I have to change areas, I have been here in Puerto Barrios for almost 6 months. But I have done what I need to do here and now I have the chance to learn from other wonderful people! I hope all of you have a wonderful week. Hope on kids!

Con Amor
Hermana Edwards

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