Sunday, January 8, 2012

December 19, 2011

So this past week has been one of the craziest in my entire mission, and so will this next week! I feel like I have been running around all over, and there have been so many things running through my head! There have been so many late nights and things to do this past week. It is like ever since I knew I was going to be training all of a sudden everything on the mission exploded and got a lot more stressful. haha.

So yes! It's official. I am a trainer. Sister Marty is down in Podolsk and it is me and Sister Habibullina (hereafter referred to as C. X2) up here in Z. She's 26, and so it's kind of weird that I'm training someone older than I am, but she is soooo great and a sweetheart. She's been a member for 9 years, and it the only member in her family. She is fresh from the Spain MTC, and speaks only Russian! She understands quite a bit, but can't really say much, but she really wants to learn. It's been so good for my Russian already, and I hope that I can help her learn English a bit. In the past few days though, I have gone from feeling perfectly calm about this responsibility (being a trainer, especially of a Russian sister), to freaking out and being nervous, to feeling okay, to being overwhelmed and like a failure, to being so excited...I have basically experienced every emotion that someone can feel, all in the space of only a few days. But she is awesome and has helped me out a lot. I feel like I don't really need to train her, because she is already trained. The few lessons that we've had together she has just rocked. I hope that I can help her learn something about missionary work, be a good friend/mom/trainer/companion for her, and that we can work some more miracles together up here in Z. I was ready for a change, and C. X2 is so great, so I hope we can work well together and that I can be a good trainer to her, like C. X (1) was for me. What is something really cool about training is the new training program. I guess it's not really new anymore, since I went through it when I came out, but it is super cool and super helpful. I am super excited to be training simply because it will be helpful for me personally--kind of like retraining myself, but also being trained by my trainee. Also cool--there were 2 other Russian sisters who came in (and 1.5 Elders...I say 1/2 because 1 of the 2 had to go back to England from the MTC, because he's a Brit and doesn't have a Russian visa yet) and they are being trained by Sister Petersen and Sister Bullough, the two sisters who are here who were my in district at the MTC! We are super close, and our "daughters" are super close, so it's kind of really exciting to all be in this together. It's awesome how companions can help each other learn. I just love C. X2 already and hopefully by the end of our time together she will love me as much as I love her and I will have hopefully helped her in some way, and not screwed up her mission. haha, just kidding about the screwing up her mission part. I won't do that. I hope...not on purpose...not it will be great. The Lord wouldn't have asked me to do this if He wasn't going to help me and if He didn't know that I need to, and can, do it.

Anyway, I feel super bad because the first days of C. X2's mission have been INSANE! After transfers, we just hung out in Moscow, because there was our stake Christmas program that all the missionaries were a part of that night. After getting lost on our way to this building and lots of practicing songs (that she didn't even get to be a part of since she just got here), we didn't get home with her luggage until like 11:00 p.m. because the program got out so late and we needed to go home to Z still. But the Christmas program was super great. I got to see some people I love from Kahovski, my first area, and just around the stake that I know and love, and there was good music and great company and a great Spirit. Anyway, so we got home super late. And then the next day, after studying and she unpacked and a few meetings, we went BACK TO MOSCOW, because I had a visa trip on Saturday. So she hadn't even had a full day in our area, and I took off to Kiev. 

It was so great to go to Kiev with my MTC group. Man, each time I see them, I love them more and more. They are all doing great things here in Moscow, and we're just like family. Due to the time change (that Russia didn't do), Kiev is now 2 hours behind us, and so we have to hop on an earlier flight, and we didn't have time to go to the temple. But we did have a great time wandering around Kiev. (well, we have a member of the church drive us around and show us some sights). It was a lot of fun. Hopefully next time we will be able to go to the temple, as well as see some more of the city. 

THEN Sunday morning we were coming back to Z from Moscow and I decided to take a new way that I thought was faster--and it would have been, if we hadn't had to wait 20 minutes for our marshrutka (little van-taxi-bus thing). So we ended up being 5-10 minutes late to church. Of course, I have to be coming from Moscow and be late on the day that President Schweitzer, you know, the 70 who is area President over the Europe East Area, comes to our branch. Haha. Yeah, I felt like a great missionary. However, if he noticed, he was super nice about it and didn't say anything afterwards when I was talking with him briefly. And he shared some great news with our branch, about how next month the new triple combination in Russian will be available! WHOO-HOO! This is sooooo exciting! First, we don't have a triple combination in Russian yet. I remember in the MTC we were all jealous of the Spanish and other languages, because they had these nice scriptures in their mission language and we just had the little dinky ones (I know, what's on the inside is more important, but still, it's nice to have nice scriptures!) but now all the members will be able to get a triple combination for fairly cheap! Second, it will be an even better translation! Also super important. I'm sooo excited.  It is just another privilege. First stake, first triple combination...I wonder what else will happen here before the end of my mission? First temple? :)

But despite all the craziness things are still going well. Things are still set for Sveta and Denis's baptism on Friday. I'm super stoked. We can hopefully get some other investigators progressing this week too. Life is great. I'll talk to you on Christmas (well, for me it will be Christmas!)

Sister Ashby
Me and Sister X2

Her name tag. It's in Spanish, since she was in Spain (and her Russian ones are broken), and so I thought Matt and Katelyn (I mean...Sister Hyde) might like to see it. :)

 My MTC sisters and our Russian daughters

 My MTC district aka "The Okrug" in Kiev

Monument in Kiev

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