Flooding the Mission Presidents office, the Stutznegger's final two, heart felt Zone Conferences and having to say "Goodbye" to his own generation of missionaries... plus some homemade cherry turnovers.
What happens when you hear that the water ran out at the offices? You turn on the sink to check and see if the water really did run out at the offices. What happens when someone leaves the sink running and then the water magically turns back on without anyone knowing? You flood the mission president's office. What happens when you find out that your bathroom sink was the one left on? You blame your companion...It has been a long week.
I thought something like that would happen just to top off another crazy, wonderful week here in Mexico. And boy has it been an insane week. Tuesday we finally had the first of two zone conferences in the Paraíso stake center. These conferences were highly anticipated since they were the Stutznegger´s last. So you can imagine that the week started with an emotional bang. Elder Roberts and I trained and we felt it went well but we were not prepared for the grand finale. President and Hna Nebeker AND President and Hna Stutznegger shared with half the mission their final thoughts and pieces of advice and they left no whole-hearted survivors. Roberts and I swore that at the zone conference in Neza on Friday we would take precautionary measures and make sure to slip out just before. However, a part of us thought that since we had already heard their messages we would be immune to their fiery darts of sadness and inspiration. Oh how silly of us. I did not leave unscathed from either of the two conferences. Because it wasn't as much for the inspiring words they shared but the love that was felt. I left these zone conferences with a surety that God had blessed me with the best mission parents any elder could ask for because they loved me with such incredible depth and power that felt almost tangible. Feelings and emotions I could never forget.
These memorable conferences were accompanied this week by some other surrealistic experiences. Basically two years ago I arrived here in Mexico City with some other pretty cool gringos and we started this wild ride together. Now, with a million more stories and way better spanish, it was time for them to leave me. To make matters worst, Elder Wolford, who was a straggler to the party because of visa issues but a proud member of the best generation known to man and world-class companion, decided to jump ship as well. Add in the incredibly beautiful puerto rican Elder Alverio who was one of the best missionaries this mission has ever seen and a huge example to me and you have a quite the cocktail of amazing people all set to ABANDON ELDER FOUST! On Wednesday, we went to an emotion session at the temple, then came back to have an even more emotional testimony meeting, only to head out to the airport on Thursdayand have a devastatingly emotional goodbye. Okay, maybe not devastating but it was hard. However, I knew it wasn't a final goodbye. I grew up with these people here in the mission and we have truly formed a friendship set to last through the eternities. They are my brothers and I am going to miss them. But in reality, imma hunt them down in few months so they can run...for now.
An incredible blessing to me was that I felt I received yet another confirmation that extending my mission was the right decision. I knew saying goodbye to my generation would be a little hard but I was worried it would make me more trunky or more, well, sad. I thought the ''would've'' or ''could've''s would have plagued my mind but it felt surprisingly natural. As if meant to be. It didn't really feel like I should have been on a plane last Thursday heading home. It wasn't meant to happen that way. I felt a lot of peace knowing I'm on the right track.
So running around like crazy and witnessing a number of chapters end has been a continuous theme these past few months. But with new endings there are always new beginnings and a new excitement of finding out what's the next thing life has to teach us. The book of life. I've heard it's a great read.
con mucho amor,
To email Elder Foust, his address is: firstname.lastname@example.org