the dengue diaries // 2.1.15

happy february everyone! january sure ended unexpectedly. time is just way too fast. we’ve had a roller coaster week here in catbalogan! i’m emailing earlier than usual today because we’re going to tacloban later…more on that later!

  • awesome: that i didn’t transfer! 3 areas, 2 languages, 7 companions, 18 months. that’s my mission. i’m so grateful to get to finish out my mission in this wonderful area!
  • awesome 2: we finally moved! yes i know its hard to believe that after all of my false alarms, saying that we’re moving. but its finally happened! thanks to our great sr. couple missionaries and the elders here! we started saturday morning and it was quite the ordeal. especially taking down the bunk beds (which were put together incorrectly to begin with!) and reassembling them in the new apt. did we encounter trials while trying to move in? yes we did. aka the doorknob somehow broke and we couldn’t get into the apt, after all of our things were moved in. ironic, right? so we found ourselves at the hardware stores while the good old polynesian elders broke into our apt so we could replace the doorknob! by the time all was said and done, it was about 8pm, and we were dead tired! but all is well because we’re now out of that old smelly apartment down the street from the slaughter house! so no more rats, no more sewer smells, no more leaking roof, no more fears of flooding, no more cleaning up rat poop, no more killing cockroaches and mosquitoes every morning, no more rats, no more rats, did i mention no more rats?! our new apt is a lot smaller, but it doesn’t matter because its so much better 🙂
  • awkward: met an american who is here for some peace corps thing. so weird to see an american. i almost felt defensive like, “umm excuse me why are you here? i’m supposed to be the only american here…” haha
  • tuesday was transfer day, and since there is officially no more transfer meeting in tacloban, we spent the day coordinating the travel for all the sisters coming to and from our zone. stressful! and crazy busy. but i was so happy at the end of the day when all of our sisters arrived safely in their respective areas!
  • wednesday i did not feel good. body aches and just slept the whole day.
  • thursday and friday, back on my feet and we had good days of work!
  • saturday was moving day
  • sunday. we went to church, but other than that i was down for the count! sister hansen (mission nurse) and i both think i have dengue due to the fact that all my bones hurt and i feel like i have arthritis, and because i have red dots all over! so yeah i’m a polka dot mess but i’m keeping it all in check with tylenol
  • that’s part of the reason we’re going to tacloban…to get a rapid dengue test before MLC on tuesday and wednesday. mom don’t worry about me! i’m actually totally fine. i always heard that dengue is the worst pain ever felt, so miserable, etc. in no way do i recommend having dengue (if the test confirms thats what it is), but its really not even half as bad as the hype makes it sound like it is! so yeah keep me in your prayers. but i’m totally fine. already had a priesthood blessing as well 🙂 (did i want to hear the words, “be thou healed” or “arise, take up thy bed and walk” in that priesthood blessing? yes i did. but i unfortunately wasn’t blessed with that haha. so i guess i will continue to just have a normal recovery and our poor investigators will not be visited for a few extra days!)
  • also, in the spirit of full disclosure i am telling you about this whole dengue thing so please (mom) do not panic and think that i’m just candy coating everything and that really i’m dying. because i’m totally fine! really. its just a little test of my faith here at the end of my mission. but nothing i can’t handle through the enabling power 🙂
  • so yeah. life is good. hopefully we’ll be back to work after we come back from tacloban on wednesday! i plan to have a full days work on thursday! i just want to work!

thanks for all you love and support! i sure do love you all. and i’m so grateful for all your prayers in my behalf! next week i’ll send pics of the new apt 🙂

love,

sister brereton

pictures // 2.1.15

district lunch

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moving day. sis. clerigo, my batch. love her to pieces

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moving

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now that we’ve moved, here is our old gross bathroom 🙂 its like a cave. doesn’t even have a light. we just used a lantern haha #reason1formoving

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the smelly drain that the rats go in and out #reason2formoving

our leaking roof 🙂 #reason3formoving0-4.jpg

our leaking roof 🙂 #reason3formoving

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i’m not transferring! // 1.25.16

i know i have been saying for weeks that i’ll be transferring, but the revelation is in, and i’m staying put! and i’m so happy! this means i’m in my last area! my companion and i go home at the same time, so we after us, whitewash!

  • awesome: that i’m not transferring! the work here has absolutely exploded in the last week and so i’m so grateful that i’ll get to stay here! 🙂 its honestly such a relief. i don’t have to adjust to a new area for just the last 6 weeks of my mission. i prayed that i can finish my mission with no regrets, and feel like i’ve done my best. i think staying in this area will help me to do just that!
  • awkward: we still haven’t moved! but we have started to move some of our things to the new apt 🙂 we’re waiting for someone from the mission who has a truck to help us move the big stuff! so hopefully by the time i email next we truly will have moved for real!
  • i didn’t make a list of things to write about, and we just barely received the exciting news of transfers, so my mind is a little bit blanking right now! i’ll copy the email i sent to president maurer (which i wrote before transfer announcements!) Hello President,
    I can’t believe another week has already come and gone. Time speeds up every single week. Hope things are well in Tacloban. We are anxiously awaiting transfer announcements. I can’t believe that I’m about to embark on my last cycle here in the mission. I feel like I just barely got a handle of all the missionary responsibilities, and now I’ll soon be going home. I look forward to this next cycle to strive to really become the missionary that Heavenly Father wants me to be. Its my only chance! As much as I would have loved to submit a “request” to you for my last area, or last language, or last companion, the truth is I just couldn’t bring myself to do it! I know that of course, the Lord knows best where I should be serving, in which language, and who with. I can’t be the one to choose! I will willingly serve Him in anyplace, in any capacity. I’ll do whatever He wants me to do.
    We had a really great week here in Catbalogan. I really love the new method of exchanges! We were able to have exchanges with both the San Joaquin sisters and Borongan sisters. First was Borongan and I worked with Sister xxxx. Every time, its a privilege to work with her! Her ability to bring the Spirit into a lesson is incredible. I know its because of her diligence in striving for the Spirit, her love of the people being taught, and her obedience to the rules. She is a wonderful missionary and I will miss her dearly! Next we had exchanges with San Joaquin and I worked with Sister xxx! I’m really impressed with her language! Although she doesn’t understand everything, she is able to teach small, but powerful parts of the lesson. The people easily trust and love her. I am excited to see her grow and progress in the mission as a capable and willing instrument in the hands of the Lord!
    I love working in our area. Its incredible to me to see the difference in our area in just one week of really focusing on it! I have loved not traveling for exchanges! We have found some really potential investigator families, and that is exciting. We also had the chance to contact an internet referral we received through the new referral system. Although the actual referral was not completely interested, her mother was and we gave her a baptismal date right away! It really goes to show that the Lord will provide a means to find His children who are prepared for the gospel 🙂
    Thank you for everything President Maurer! Whether I stay in this area, or move to another, I am happy to serve and will always look upon my mission experience with love and fondness. This opportunity to serve is truly priceless. Thank you for everything you and Sister Maurer do in our behalf. We love you!
    Love,
    Sister Brereton
  • ummmmmm i’m so blanking! can’t think what else to tell you about!
  • just want to testify of the power of prayer. heavenly father really does listen. no other time in my mission have i so often experienced heavenly father answering my prayers immediately!
i am so grateful for all of you! i love you all! sorry for the lame email. hope the pics make up for it! until next week  🙂
love,
sister brereton

pics // 1.25.16

our district. last photo before transfers!

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the tan line is so real

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i love these sisters!

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begin the moving process. its so much work!

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haha table number

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cute restaurant we went to!

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scraping the nutella jar clean, as usual

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RC angel

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the true height difference between me and my comp! haha

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the branch missionaries who i love dearly!

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i sure do love this branch! i’m glad i’m not transferring!

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last district dinner on the rooftop of our new apt!

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the fastest week to date // 1.18.16

this really was the fastest week of my mission i think! i’m just trying to enjoy everyday and soak up every minute i have left in the mission and in the phils. as a lot of my friends are preparing to go home in the next week, i’m started to realize how my days are really numbered! it sounds cliche, but i’m not counting the days, just making the days count! my companion and i have made it a goal to wear ourselves out in the work every.single.day. to go home at the end of the day with nothing else to give! because even though we’re so tired, its the most satisfying feeling ever! we have had a good week:

  • awesome: interviews. every 3 months we get an interview with president maurer. i love and respect him so much. he receives revelation for our mission for sure. i was really lucky to be able to talk to him for a long time, and to be able to ask him some questions that have been on my mind as well. he told me that he really doesn’t know what to do with me…if he should transfer me, or not. transfer announcements are a week from today so i guess by then we’ll see what has been decided. he said he’ll really have to seek revelation for where i should be and with who, for my last cycle. at this point, even if i were able to choose, i don’t know what i would choose for myself! so i’m grateful for a truly inspired and in-tune mission president who will really seek what heavenly father wants. i find so much comfort in that. i’m not even worried about this coming cycle because wherever i end up, it really will be where heavenly father wants me to be!
  • awkward: mis-using expressions and having other americans correct me. haha. i’m slowly losing my mind i feel! yesterday i used the expression “pop a cap” instead of “flip a lid” (which is what i really meant!) haha i’ve been the only american around for so long that i really didn’t realize how i’ve lost the ability to keep up a normal english conversation. ugh. so yeah. don’t judge me haha.
  • awkward 2/scary: witnessing a power line explode this week. did i think that someone set of fireworks? yes i did. haha
  • apartment update: still haven’t moved….we’re waiting for screens to be put on the windows of the new apartment first! i keep saying “next week” but at this point i don’t really know when we’ll move haha. keep you posted 🙂
  • i am slowly learning tagalog….who knew! seriously though. i should probably include this in the awkward section of my email. because this week, pretty much everyone we meet speaks tagalog to us! and i just pretend like i fully understand them when really i only partially understand them! i wish i could focus my language study on tagalog and just learn it and use it..but then it wouldn’t be fulfilling D&C 90:11. so i will keep learning and using waray waray and continue to only have a basic understanding of tagalog! not to mention i don’t think my brain can handle learning a 3rd language out here on the mission.
  • oh my goodness just realized i’m out of time!
the church is true! and i love it! i’m sorry that my emails are so short and don’t even contain 1/1000 of what has actually happened, what i really think, what things are really like, etc. i do my best in the short time we have! just know that the church is true and that this is the most important work ever! i love you all!
sister brereton

pics // 1.18.16

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zone activity

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budol fight! aka eating with your hands off a banana leaf with a bunch of people haha

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my comp

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our zone!

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i love sis. papasin! she’s going home next week

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love these sisters. they’ve committed to take me shopping if i come back to visit in manila haha

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the many faces of fish (p.s. i love fish and will really miss fresh fish when i come home)

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