First Week in the MTC!
ANNEYOUNGHASAYO! Hello, hello! I made it through my first week at the MTC and it has been the longest but most amazing week of my life. I LOVE IT HERE! I will try to keep this email short.. but we all know I like to talk a lot. I literally write a novel in my journal every night.. so much has happened!! So this is a weird week because it is Thanksgiving. Normally my P-day will be on Thursdays so I will email everyone then. But hii. First, thank you to everyone for the letters, Dear Elders and packages! Thank you SO much to Mackenzie and Sam for the cupcakes – they were amazing. The elders in my district all think I'm spoiled because they're the ones who pick up the mail… and I am! So much love from the Davis Chamaenym fan club this week. I love and miss you guys every day!
So I guess I will start with the first day. So hard to say goodbye (mom those pictures and videos killed me, I miss you!)... but I was immediately busy, rushing to get my books and name tag before class. I was the first one to the classroom and was met by my teacher who quickly started speaking Korean at me and asking me to do things. SO overwhelming. My first instinct was to just smile and say, "Si, yes" (but I don't even speak Spanish). Then I met my district and they are so fun. Party Kaja! There are six of us, four 18-year old boys who just graduated from high school. They're hilarious and we get nothing done in our "additional study time." Then there is me and my Companion, Sister Mulitano. She is Samoan, a volleyball star, so chill, hilarious, ALWAYS tired and the slowest walker on planet earth. I love her! We are always dying laughing...although I'm not sure if things are actually hilarious or if we're just slap happy from no sleep. We live with a native Korean who is from Seoul so she isn't in our district because she is already fluent. She is the cutest and gets huge eyes when she is excited or laughs. It was hard at first because my companion took a year of Korean at the University of Utah, so she could speak to her and I didn't understand. It is also a huge blessing because she has already taught me so much! Me always: "Woo Chamaenym, how do you say goodnight? How do you say tired? We are freezing.. how do you say cold?" (Ps I know we joked about the Snuggie, but I am ALWAYS freezing in the classroom mom.. so that would be awesome!)
Speaking of the language, it is going to be very hard...BUT we have come a long way. It's funny because the littlest things are the BIGGEST successes to me here. I was so excited when I could finally read my name tag in Korean. We can also pray (simply), sing (slowly) and teach in Korean already! So far we have taught 3 lessons in KOREAN. The first lesson went pretty well considering it was only our second day. Of course, my two sentences I memorized were only 5% of the lesson while my companion chatted and laughed with the investigator. I'm literally just smiling and nodding like "We are God's children," "God loves us..." which was progress because all morning I kept saying "we are God's chair." Even though I felt like I couldn't understand any part of the lesson… it is amazing how even our simple, broken sentences could bring the spirit. I love the MTC because the spirit is so present everywhere we go! I keep saying I have tingles and chills on my arms and it's true. It is an amazing place and I am learning and growing so much. Our lesson last night did not go as well...he asked a difficult question right from the beginning and we were unprepared and all over the place. Mulitalo Chamaenym tried to explain at first but we were just lost. Of course, I don't speak the language and could hardly pick up what his questions even were. I just stand up, grab the dictionary and start pulling out random words trying to make a point. Literally..."school!" (draw a picture), "Test" (act it out), "Earth!"...we all know how terrible I am at charades. Sooo we definitely have a long way to go but I know that I can't do this on my own. Through faith I will see miracles and believe me – I already have!
So everyone always says "just get to Sunday" and I was always confused thinking – I love it here! Well, Saturday night it hit me and I was really stressed with the language and discouraged. I can just say… Sundays in the MTC are amazing. We had some wonderful musical numbers, talks and discussions that confirmed to me that this is where I am supposed to be. We watched Elder Bednar's Devotional called the "Character of Christ" that is actually only shown at the MTC. It was about how Christ turns outward in love and service in EVERY situation, when the natural man (me) would turn in. This mission is not about me. Such a huge reminder that I need to look outside of myself instead of focusing on my problems and what I can't do. Our teacher shared Ether 12:6 with us yesterday and said to change the wording in it to "miracles." We will not receive "miracles" until after the trial of our faith. Learning Korean is going to be a faith exercising and faith building experience for me… but faith prompts us to act, meaning I have to take the first step. I have to work hard, humble myself, recognize I can't do this on my own, and trust that God will help me. With faith I will see miracles.
I am so happy here!! I miss everyone so much but I am absorbing everything I can from this experience, meeting amazing people and having so much fun (even when it's hard...we laugh 5 min. later). Just from my experiences in these 5 days I know that God knows each of us individually. He loves us and will ALWAYS provide strength as we turn to him. "The tender mercies of the Lord are over all whom He hath chosen because of their faith" (1 Nephi 1:20). I know this is where I am supposed to be and I am so happy!!!
HAPPY THANKSGIVING THIS WEEK!! I am so grateful for you all. LOVE AND MISS YOU!!
|Meeting my new MTC family|
|Im Chamaenym making the heart sign|
|Mulitalo Chamaenym in our humble home|
|Thank you Sam and Mackenzie!!!|