The longest week of my life deserves the longest blog post! Yaaay! So woo! Denmark! The dream is here and it’s not anything like I expected. It’s so hard. I think my biggest trial (next to not understanding anyone – Ældste G: “Welcome to Denmark! You now know nothing!”) has been biking. I didn’t work out at all before I came, and even at the MTC I would only run as far as I thought I could (Like 3 laps lol. Ya I’m a wimp.), so when Søster Noorda and I bike everywhere, I get really discouraged because my legs feel like they’re gonna fall off and I get sick just trying to imagine 16.5 more months of this. Also knowing that the only way to get better is to ride more makes my head hurt. Probably the biggest trial I’ve ever had in my life has been my mission so far.
We arrived in Denmark, got picked up by Præsident Sederholm and the assistants, then the APs took us around and we saw the Christus statue, the Little Mermaid, and Nyhavn, which is that canal with all the colorful buildings when you look up Denmark on Google. We slept at Præsident’s house, then the next day we met our new companions! Mine is Søster Hanna Noorda from Las Vegas (Yes, she is most likely related to Gerrit Noorda) and my first area is Roskilde! (pronounced Ros-keel-eh)
The past few days have been so rough. I think I focus so much energy on biking that my brain has no time to focus on Danish. I’ve tried a couple times to speak to people though. I was sitting on the bus the other day and this old lady sat next to me. I said “Jeg hedder Søster Ferguson, hvad hedder du?” except I think I must’ve said “Hvad hader du?” which means ” what do you hate?” because she didn’t respond with her name.
Another experience though was the second night, Søs Noorda and I were bank på-ing (knocking doors) and I knocked and said “Hej! vi er missionær fra vores kirke og vi har en enkel budskab om Jesus Kristus og hans kærlighed for os, må vi dele det med dig?” and the man (His name was Tonny) totally was open and we have an appointment with him tomorrow! Woo!
Lørdag (Saturday) was actually an awesome day, which was weird. I woke up discouraged because Søs Noorda told me that we had a long bike ride that day. I hate biking, btw. In the morning the Elders picked us up in their nice car and drove us to a breakfast and meeting at the Biskop’s hus. They were so friendly and courteous to me and my tiny Danish, and the breakfast was excellent! Later when we got back and set out for our bike ride the sky started to get less grey, still grey though, and the ride was beautiful! I have no idea why I was in such a good mood because we did bike over 20 miles that day. I never thought I could ever bike 20 plus miles in one day before in my life. We did some service with this man (His name was Michael) and talked about prayer.
Yesterday, Søndag, I was so excited for because the only Danish words I really know are churchy words, but dang, I couldn’t understand anyone. There are certain people that I can understand when they speak and others that I just can’t at all. During dinner appointments, sometimes, the family will see that I don’t speak much Danish or I can’t really understand them, so they’ll only talk to Søs Noorda, and I sit there awkwardly, trying to figure out what’s going on. We have an investigator that talks so nice and slow! I love her.
I’m trying to figure out how to be happy. I’m so overwhelmed all the time and the 8 hours of sleep go by way too fast. Trying to figure out how to find happiness in the moment, despite not knowing the language, and killer bike rides for long periods of time, and gloomy weather.
I pray a lot. I’m praying the entire time I’m on a bike. God and I have some good conversations. I’m sure He’s up there cracking up because I say some of the most ridiculous things when I’m going up hills.
Me: “I’m a wimp”
God: ” You’re not a wimp, you just biked 20 miles!”
Me: “You kidding? You know I never work out :P”
Me: “God, if I’m allowed to hate anything in this life, it’s gonna be hills. That’s a perfectly fine thing to hate too! It doesn’t affect anyone! I HATE HILLS!” (And this is all out loud too)
I picture a small blue train a lot “Jeg tror jeg kan, jeg tror jeg kan…” Chugga. Chugga.
Our elders keep me sane. We have six missionaries in our district – 2 sets of elders and us. They remind me that Søs Noorda and I aren’t the only missionaries in the world and that I’m allowed to laugh. Our district leader, Elder Hawkes, for the past 2 times he’s called for reports has either sung everything he said or spoke Spanish. Man I love those guys. We’re making them a pie for district meeting on Wednesday.
Honestly, all I need to hear is that I’m not the only one having a rough time. I need to hear from one of my MTC family that I have an ally in my emotions. I’m the kind of person to hold troubles and such inside because I don’t want it to affect the world around me, but I’ve been so emotional the past week from missing the MTC and the Dutchies and my wonderful MTC district that is scattered throughout Denmark right now, and the bike, and the language, and Søs Noorda’s determination and drive that pushes me a lot but overwhelms me sometimes too.
I know the salvation of souls isn’t going to wait for me to catch up, but it’s really hard.
Here’s to a new week. And the beginning of what now seems like the longest, hardest year and a half of my life, but hopefully soon will be the best year and a half of my life.
I’m not in Kansas anymore. This is the big world and I need to get my big girl shorts on and face it.
Bror Williamson (Who is one of my all time heroes) told us a story and he said “The last thing I saw of Denmark was a golden field.” Well I’m here and I’m ready to harvest.
Hej Hej indtil næste uge
(I’m pretty sure that says, “Bye until next week.”)