Monday, May 28, 2012

So a lot has happened since I last e-mailed. Like I said before, I got malaria on Thursday, not last week, but the week before. It was pretty much hell again. I had a headache that just throbbed and throbbed for like two days straight. Pain medication didn't really take it away, even 800 mg of Ibuprofen wouldn't do anything. I am being really careful now about taking my doxycycline every day and making sure my mosquito net is covering my bed really well.
So two Tuesdays ago President Judd called me to be a trainer. So this last Wednesday I said goodbye to Elder Ikoro and went to pick up my new companion from the MTC. His name is Elder Strong, and he's from West Jordan! I'll be training him until August 15th! So that means I'll stay in Nsawam for another three months! That'll make it 9 months in this same area by the time I finish training. Elder Strong is a little taller than me, I'll send a picture. He's really cool though. Humble, doesn't feel homesick, and is a hard worker. I feel like I can relate to a lot of what he's going through right now and I'm trying to help him out as much as I can. I'm taking every companion I like as a huge blessing now and never for granted. It's been fun to help him out and explain the really different culture to him. In the end though, it's just really drained my energy for the day and by the time we finish at night, my brain just feels fried. We're kind of starting new as far as the work goes. Me and Elder Ikoro had been working with the same investigators for a long time and they just didn't quite progress and keep commitments like I had hoped they would, so we dropped a lot of them. But the Stake President has been out to preside at our branch every Sunday since we became part of a stake and he's really focusing on reactivation of less active members as well as giving us missionaries member referrals, so that's really nice. We even met with one of the referrals yesterday. Hopefully through all these referrals we'll keep the missionary work flowing.
Those pictures from the Grand Canyon are pretty sweet. Connor's muscles are...... kind of big...... ;) just let him know that his are weak compared to mine big deal though....... It looks like you guys had fun! and HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Dad! I know it's like a week late, but 45 just about puts him over the "old" line. I'll give him until 50 though until he's officially "old".
Everything is going pretty well with training. I'll admit that it's not easy to lead around someone who comes from the same culture as me, it takes a little more confidence and surety in myself. Sometimes I just get really scared and discouraged of whether or not I can do all this. Because it really is a big responsibility. I usually just find somewhere quiet at those times and just pray. I don't pray like I'm hopeless, because I've found nothing really goes well when I don't feel like I can do it, but I do pray for strength and blessings as I continue. Often times when I do that, the fear is just swept away and it feels so good. That's when I know for sure that Heavenly Father hears my prayers. I think I went through a lot of the hard times on my mission so far so that I would learn to depend on my Heavenly Father more. Honestly, I think I was pretty prideful before I left. I think I thought a lot of myself and that I could do it all on my own. Ha, boy was I WRONG! It's really not an easy thing, especially to take the lead as senior companion in a culture that I just don't quite fully understand. I'm glad I'm in the area I'm in and I've made really good relationships with the members here. It makes it really comforting when they're so helpful to me.
President Judd told us all, as we went to a trainers council meeting the Thursday after the Tuesday he called us, that Jeffery R. Holland said that the most important decision a mission president would make would be choosing the trainers who would train his missionaries. He told each of us (there were only 6 of us this transfer) that he trusted us all very much to train. That made me feel pretty good, and I've been able to draw confidence from that when I'm feeling down. Elder Strong kind of reminds me of Jake Kartchner in a way, ha, and not just because he's tall. He's pretty humble, and he's trying his best to adapt to the culture and to learn more about how to teach the people here. I'm glad I got him as a missionary.
Well, I don't have too much else to say. If you guys have any questions, let me know. I think I could use a bed sheet with elastic on the corners, I can't seem to find one here, so if you get the chance, and it fits in a package, please send one :) I also ran out of black pepper, which you guys send me, If you can send that again, that would be nice. I use it a lot for my stews :) Thanks, I love you guys and I really am just enjoying my mission. I'm already 9 months out now! Can you believe it! It almost feels like I'm on the downwards slope now, but I'll try not to think like that, ha ha :) Mom, I know I promised President Morris before I left that I wouldn't miss a week sending you a letter, and I felt bad that I missed last week! I hope everything is going well back home! I love you Mom! I love you Dad! I love my brothers and sister too, I think I'll always be a little bit homesick for my siblings. Anyways, talk to you next week!

Love, Dallin (Elder Littlefield)

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