I finished my second week of training, and oh my have I learned so much in this short little time. Every minute of your mission you learn so much, it is crazy how much you learn. I have learned this week how to be a better missionary, to work every single minute I possible can, how to truly love my companion, so much more about the gospel, and best of all my language. I have only been with Sister Corrêa for 2 weeks, but she says that already she had seen improvement in my Portuguese, there are only a few things with my pronunciation, but she says I am pretty much fluent. I still have doubts. But I do pretty much understand everything that everyone says to me, some of the people with their accents here I have problems with still, but my companion can’t understand them either.
Our area was really progressing when Sister Corrêa came here, and that’s what I think I had the most problems with, was what to do. So we have been doing a ton of contacts. and have started teaching some new people, even new families. We have been working very hard every day to try and teach people. This week the sun has also been super hot and super strong, so we have been exhausted when we come home and fall right asleep.
Sister Corrêa is amazing and she helps me so much. Me being new, I don’t know what to do some of the time, but she is great and has a very good work ethic too. But throughout this week we have been learning together. Stumbling along the way, but growing firmer in every step that we take. Its interesting because she has a good knowledge of the Bible, where I don’t so much, and I have a better understand of the Book of Mormon, because she is a convert of just 1 year and 8 months. So we help each other learn more. I have also started teaching her English, because she really wants to know, she already had a good basis. But I have been helping her. So at night now we only speak English. But I have found that it is really hard for me to speak English now. I am forgetting words and how to say some words, and even some of the grammar. It’s usually speaking that I have the problem with. But it is very interesting this transition between languages.
So this week something historic happened. WE are now part of a new stake! The stake of Caruaru! It is pretty exciting. So we all, both the wards here, hopped on a bus for Caruaru, about an hour away, for the formation of our stake. The bus was hot and muggy, just as you can imagine, but it was worth it.
This week in our apartment we have encountered, I think 6 cockroaches!!! That’s the most in the whole time I have been here. We all don’t like killing them and are really scared, so we took turns. So I killed my first coach roach this week. Boy did I smash it. The other sisters came home saw that is was smeared all over the floor, and asked what it did to me, haha. But the most exciting one was where one flew in the window past my head and then right in front of two other sisters studying, we were all running around screaming. The other exciting one was in our dresser. It has a door that opens with shelves, and it was in one of the shelves. WE were trying to kill it with our smashing all of Sister Corrês things.
This week I also had my first encounters with people gawking over me, because I was an American. A lady this week wanted me to bring her home in my suitcase and said that I should act in movies here. One yesterday first thought I was Italian. But they all wanted to kiss me and shake my hand and to talk to me. They kept saying I can't believe an American is here, right in front of me. Oh my goodness, I was so embarrassed after that.
But these weeks have been exciting and I have learned a lot. I always trust in the Lord. I hope everything is good for everyone else.
Sister Rebecca Nelson