Oh my goodness!! I can't even believe it's been a week already. I have so much to say and my brain is so scattered. It's CRAZY busy in the MTC. You have almost no time to do anything.. Except learn Swedish and read your scriptures. Even getting ready is a struggle. Yesterday I had about a half an hour to get ready, including showering, doing my hair and makeup... Let's just say I went to class with wet hair. :)
SO. You will NEVER believe who is in my Branch Presidency here in the MTC!night the new missionaries went to a meeting with their Branch Presidency and a Brother Hartman gets up and introduces himself... He said something like this: "Hi, I'm Brother Hartman. I wrote this book called "The Color Code"..." And I was like "WHHHHHHAAAAAATTTT????!!!! NO WAY!!!! You are my hero!!!!" I was SOOOOOOOO excited!!!! Taylor Hartman is in my branch Presidency!! I literally blurted out my surprise while he was talking. I was SO excited. But it gets better- I got to be interviewed with him that night. Just me and the Author of "The Color Code." We talked about it pretty much the whole interview. I explained to him that I'm a strong blue and started explaining to him some of my typical blue struggles, and how my companion, Sister Mecham, I believe is a red. Let me tell you- I totally hit it off with Brother Hartman. I told him how much His book has changed my entire life. As if it couldn't get any better, I also got to go to a leadership training with him last night. Which brings me to my next point- I have been called as the Sister Training Leader for our Zone (that's why I was at the training meeting).
SO! In our zone there are just 4 Sisters and a BUNCH of Elders. It's two girls going to Norway (Sister Wadley and Sister Bender) and Sister Mecham and I. Our zone is the people going to Norway, Sweden, Denmark and the Belgium/Netherlands Mission. There are 7 Elders going to Sweden and 2 Sisters (including myself) for a total of 9 Swedes. I room with the two Nordes. I've been thinking of Dad and Noelle a lot as I am constantly with the Norwegian missionaries. :) It's awesome because some of the things the Norwegian missionaries say remind me of you, Dad. Like when they say "I love you" in Norwegian. :)
We taught our first investigator, Isabel,. Two days after we got there. Let me tell you- the gift of tongues is a real thing. Sister Mecham and I taught that whole lesson ALL in Svenska. We have now taught 3 lessons in Swedish. The first two I was heavily dependent on notes and things I had written down. Yesterday in our lesson I was able to start to say things actually out of my head!! It was awesome!! It was all God though.
I had my first official breakdown in class yesterday. Yes, I started crying in class. We were supposed to role play bearing our testimony (or something like that) and inviting our investigator to be baptized in as much Swedish as we could. I was exhausted- mentally, spiritually, emotionally, physically. The whole 9 yards. Sister Mecham, my companion, is picking up the language super quickly and I'm struggling. It's hard! But I am BEYOND grateful for what Sister Bradley taught me. It has helped me SO much. What a blessing! If I hadn't have had her, I think it would have been a lot harder for me. But anyways, I left class and collected myself and received a lot of comfort from Sister Mecham, and our FANTASTIC teacher, Sister Haynes, but most especially from God. I felt a lot of peace that afternoon and our lesson with Isabel was so great. I felt the Spirit strongly and I was able to bear my witness to her in Swedish. I felt so much peace and help with my individual struggles. God answers prayers and really is aware of what we are going through.
One quick word about my companion, Sister Mecham. She is a hard worker. Very hard worker. She is from Alpine, Utah and has been to BYU already. She seems like she is a red personality! She is a great missionary!
I saw Sister Helmick!! It was soooo hard to see her at first because I miss her so much. But we got several chances to talk and catch up and that helped me have a lot more peace.
Thank you for all of your letters!! There is a joke in my District that I get more letters then the whole Zone combined. :) I LOVE it!! Keep them coming!! They really help me. I struggle most with homesickness surprisingly in the morning. The first couple of days were really hard. I'm sooo grateful for all of the letters.
I love you all SO much!!!
|With Aunt Lisa and her cousin Ralph before going into the MTC.|
|Natalya and her companion: Syster Mecham|
|Syster Nielsen and Sister Helmick. :)|
|Natalya and Søster Bender, a missionary headed to Norway.|
|All the missionaries headed to Sweden.|
|Natalya's second cousin Tucker Perkins (second from the right).|
|The girls Natalya rooms with. From right to left: Syster Nielsen, Syster Mecham, Søster Wadley, & Søster Bender.|
|It was so good to see Sister Helmick!|
|I LOVE my letters!|