This week was a pretty interesting week. A couple moments that were "firsts" for me in my life! I was strengthened in my testimony very much this week and it ended up being a great week of learning. The weather was amazing this week and it is COLD! You know what that means? That's right, I'm breaking out the sweater vest! ha And let me tell you...I look suave. ;) It was nice to bundle up in your blanket you sent me, Mom. It is perfect for this weather! We had a good storm on Saturday, and we decided to get a bit of fresh air during lunch and take a trip into Anaheim Hills and into a cloud ha. It was fun, and we sure enjoyed the cold, and it was fun to be in a cloud. :) We took some fun pictures to remember the moments, since Elder Smith will be leaving me soon...we have to capture all we can since we won't even be together a full transfer...boo. The pics were fun, though, hope you like them! ha
The first "first" moment that happened to us this week really caught us off guard. I was on exchanges with Elder Dehlin in his area, and we had just had a great day of working hard in the bitter cold on bike, and we were enjoying a good shrimp dinner with one of the less actives in their area. Background information is that it is an older woman with her 35 year old son that is in really bad health condition from cancer. In the middle of our conversation, he started moaning and crying really loud, so she left to go help him out. After a couple minutes of hustling around to give him medications and us offering to help, she asked us to help carry him from the bathroom to his bed. We could tell he was in a lot of pain because he could even walk. After carrying him to his bed, everything happened so fast from there. She gave him some of his medication, and out of nowhere, he stopped responding. His expressions on his face just went away and he had a blank stare. She tried talking to him and everything, and there was no response. Basically, to make the long story short-as I can pretty much only do through email-after trying to calm the mother down, we give him a blessing. In the middle of the blessing, I attempted to share with him that he could recuperate and be healed, but I couldn't get the words out of my mouth. I felt through the Holy Ghost that that wasn't what he was meant to hear-if he was still listening. I was directed otherwise to assure him that his mother would be okay and that his trip to the Spirit World would be okay. As we ended, we noticed that he passed away during the blessing-he was no longer breathing, and he did not have a pulse. And for a moment, I felt like we weren't the only people in that room. The part of this all that caught us off guard was that we were so calm. Although this was the first time I had ever experienced anything like this, I knew exactly what to do. As the paramedics came, and she had time to say goodbye to her son, they entered the room, and he revived. Without having to revive him, he came back. Although this caught us off guard because we felt it was his time to end the suffering, we are glad his mom gets a little more time to say goodbye. After taking him in the ambulance and her going with him-ecstatic to see that her son was alive, we had to leave-thinking back on what just happened. It all happened so fast, and we were led by the Spirit to do so much... Elder Dehlin has been out for just a couple months, but he was able to translate perfectly when I left the room for a moment to help out another group of paramedics. We know that we were led by the Spirit to be there at the moment we were. I know that Heavenly Father watches out over each and every one of us. Althought it was such a sudden surprise of a situation, I was so comforted to know that through this gospel, I don't need to be afraid of what come after death. It is a blessing to know what comes next so that we don't need to be afraid. A few days later, we found out that he son is indeed still alive, and that although the doctors shared with him in the hospital that he is terminal and there is nothing more they can do-that he will basically be waiting it out now, the mother is glad that she now knows to plan on it and has time to say goodbye to her son. It is a very sad situation to be in and we will continue to pray for Hna. Umanzor, but it is a blessing to her and us to know that he will be able to escape from his pain. Sorry this story turned into something so long, but I was just trying to convey the experience the best I could. I learned that even in the craziest of situations, we can be lead and calmed by the Spirit. What a blessing it is to have it!
Sorry for the downer story, but please keep that family in your prayers so they can be prepared. The other "first" story for the week is that we played in the snow Saturday night! We had snow! ha Here in Orange County, California. :) It was a lot of fun, and I will be attaching pictures so you can join in being excited for me. ;)
Well, that's pretty much it for right now. I have run out of time-as usual-so now it's time to go! The First Presidency Devotional was great! I hope you loved it as much as I did. :) Sure loved the music. Christmas is the best time of the year! We will be carrying the Christmas spirit to the homes of the part-member families in our area this week as we go caroling! It's going to be a lot of fun and a great opportunity to hopefully have the families open up and progress towards a happy eternal family through the blessings we receive from our Heavenly Father through his Son Jesus Christ. What a blessing it is to be reminded of him this Christmas season. I love you all so much and hope you, too, are enjoying the Holiday Season! :) Love you, cuidense!
"Take off the final syllable of Christmas, and you will be reminded of what Christmas is all about."