Thursday, May 29, 2014

God Loves Broken Me!

Dinosaur Femur in honor of
Kelsy's femur break!
Dearest Family,
     Well...what can I say...I'm sure a lot of you have heard a lot of the events that have been going on this week because of the numerous phone calls between you and my mission president/mission president's wife.
This week has been a doozy that's for sure.
Let's start at the beginning with the fun stuff.
      Last Monday was super fun! As a district we went on a vernal trip for p-day and went to the dinosaur museum!! Hence the bajillion Dino pictures sent to you! It was a lot of fun. Sister Reed who is in our district is HILARIOUS and loves the Dino Museum. She's pretty much the one who made it so fun because she got so excited about everything there and kept posing like the statues of Dinos. It was a really fun trip!   At some point during the trip we got separated from the elders and it turned into more of a sister’s trip than a district trip. I love the sisters in my district! We were all really sad with the idea of transfers.

Final Companion battle before transfers.
      Tuesday is when I got the phone call from Sis McCune. (The mission president's wife) After a lot of putting it off, not caring, being busy, begging from mom and then finally being forced by my companion when it started bugging me a little bit more, I talked to Sis M at zone conference about my leg and asked her advice. She told me she would talk to the mission nurse and get back to me. So Tuesday she called me and told me that she and Sis Stuart, the mission nurse, had set up an apt for me on Friday in Provo for me to get my leg checked again.
     Thursday morning rolled around and I woke up with a really sore back. I think I slept on it funny or something, but it was the lower right side of my back and it was hurting my hip and my dumb numb leg. I was pretty stiff and it was hard to bend over and stuff. I put up with it for the day, and just did the usual for the day. District meeting that day was amazing. We had a super spiritual meeting and testimony meeting. I love my district so much.. I'm glad we aren't all separating. Actually Sis Balero is the only one in our district who is getting switched out.
     I'm really going to miss being Sis Balero's companion. I learned soooooo much from her. She really has become one of my best friends and I've loved being a part of her life and having her in mine. She has taught me so much about patience in trials and overcoming hard things. She is a fighter and I've grown so much with her. I can't wait to hang out with her after the mission! Next summer we'll both be in the Tri-cities and we've already been planning our road-trip to Roosevelt together :) haha!
    So the dreaded Friday appointment....
Dino friends - duh!
Lenise takes flight with her friend.
    So we woke up really early to get to Provo on time for my appointment. Sis. Stuart and we went in and talked to the doctor. One of the doctors was feeling my hip bone and back bones and he would push so hard on them!!! I didn't realize how tender they were until he started pushing everywhere. I was in a lot of pain when he did it, especially when he kept touching the super recent sore part of my back. Sis Balero thought I was going to start crying. The doctor came in, Dr. Rich and checked it all out and told me he wanted to get an MRI of my back before deciding anything else. He gave me a back brace (which has helped a lot...but it gets really hot to wear) and some prescription for an anti-inflammatory. Then I went straight to get an MRI. They made me wear some pajama pants...then they took me into this room and gave me some lime green ear plugs to wear while in the MRI tube thingy. I was trying really hard not to move at all the whole time, but every now and then my leg would twitch and I'd be like "Dang it!!! I ruined it!" but they never yanked me out to tell me to be still. 
Not happy about a Dr. visit!
     Back up to the doctor’s office, they told me that I have a minor disc bulge in my back that is pinching the nerves in my leg and causing the pain and numbness. Shocker! But then they told me I needed an epidural. No fun. I thought only pregnant women got those!!!! I kept telling Sis Balero that I was going to be paralyzed or get polio or something!!! She kept laughing and saying "No you aren't!!!! Stop freaking out!!!" But I really was super nervous and that day especially because of my sore back I was in quite a bit of pain...especially with all the poking and prodding. 
           So, Friday I was freaking out a bit about the whole situation, but then I just prayed and prayed. Then a voice whispered. "You haven't had time to study today. You need your spiritual food." but I didn't know where to start. So the little whisper said "Read Mountains to Climb by Elder Eyring." so I was like "okaaaay...." and when I read it, I cried.
     Here's the thing. God didn't put us on this earth to have a part. To have fun. To be happy 24/7 and dance around in a field of daisies. It's not all rainbows and butterflies. This life has trials for a reason. On my mission I've had mental and emotional trials. A lot of them. And I've come out stronger than I thought I could be in some ways. So He said..."Ready? I need you to do this." and so He handed me a physical one.  That's it. In the talk Mountains to Climb President Eyring says his mother went through 10 years of painful cancer. Spencer W. Kimball talked at her funeral he simply said that the pain wasn't from something she did wrong. She just needed more polishing. God thinks I need more polishing. So I'll do it. In the talk he says when you want to cry out "When I have tried all my life to be good, why this has happened to me?" it isn't the end. It's not. I felt like that. I thought, "I've been trying so hard to do what you ask. I've been trying so hard to be a good missionary and share your message. Why has this happened to me?" and then something from another talk spiked its way through my mind as I read those words "I am the Gardner here. I know what I want you to be." I cried. Because instantly into my mind popped my response word for word what the answer of the Current bush was in Christoffersons talk. "Thank you Mr. Gardner. Thank you for loving me enough to cut me down. Thank you for loving me enough to hurt me."
     Trials are there for a reason. To build us. Strengthen us. Complete us. I am convinced that God loves broken things. He loves broken hearts and contrite spirits. Broken spirits and souls that turn to Him. He loves the broken flesh of His only Begotten Son. He loves the broken cries of His children as they turn to Him. I am convinced that God loves broken me. 
     So it was hard. I was scared. But I know God loves me. I love Him. I know He'll watch over and protect me.
     President called me last night (Monday) and he told me that I wasn't going to be given the shot. He told me that I needed to be honest and tell him how much pain I was really in. He said if it's bad and I need this shot, then I was going to need to go on medical leave, for fear of possible paralysis. I told him no. It really isn't nearly as bad. I've been ignoring it for 7ish months. I can ignore it for 10ish more. My back pain has already gone back to normal and I should be fine with my back brace and anti-inflammatory meds. I love this work. You can't make me go home. You would have to drag me kicking and screaming from this place. I love Roosevelt. I am so blessed to have the chance to stay here. By the end of this next transfer I will have been here for a third of my mission. I didn't know it was possible to have more than one home, and here it is really beginning to feel like it. 
      I'm nervous to get a new companion as always....But it just means new things to learn and new ways to grow. 
      Thank you for all the prayers and love. I've really felt them. Really. 
      Sunday I spoke in one ward and Sis Balero and I sang in two others. It was our last time singing together as companions, but we didn't know it yet. Yesterday we spent saying goodbyes and packing for transfers. Everyone was surprised that I was staying and Sis Balero is going, because I've been here the longest. It has just been so hectic lately. Sorry I didn't get the chance to write anyone back this Monday. I'll try to catch up next! So for Aubrey, Natalie,'s coming next week! (P.S. I WAS SO EXCITED WHEN I HEARD ABOUT AUBREY GOING TO PERU! AAHHH!!!) I love you all so much.  Thanks for all the advice and love. I love you all so much. Don't forget it. Miss you!

Sister Lenise Diane Volmer

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