No, I don’t actually own missionaries, secondly I’m not Mormon. So I guess this needs a little more explanation. So let me take you back a few years…
You’ve seen the young men with white shirts, black pants and ties wandering around your neighborhood. Some people think Jehova witness, they’re not. Not that the religion matters, in this blog anyways. But I’m going to introduce a few unbelievable young men to whatever readers I may have.
I won’t give their first names, as they have the right to privacy, they’ll be referred to as Elders. So let me explain how wonderful these young 3 men are. I met several, all were kind but these 3 stole my heart. Elder Hudson…was walking by one of my old neighborhoods. At this point in my life, I was struggling with newfound sobriety, extreme depression, I never left my house. I sat on my roof…literally. He and another elder, walked by our house several days and I yelled down ….”How is it you believe your faith is the right one” he answered. No, I’m NOT telling you what he said. If you want answers you need to seek them yourself. Several times he walked by day after day, I think now, that it was intentional. See; he realized I had questions and made it possible to ask them. Some were honest questions, some asked by roommates were, well….a bit crass. But, if you know my family they should be totally expected. Eventually after weeks, it was hot as hell out, I invited Elder Hudson and Badger in. I gave them Kool aid. They stayed for over an hour. Answering questions, talking about their life, prior to being missionaries and while being missionaries. I got to know them, as people. And Elder Hudson, became my friend. Eventually as time went by, I made them dinner and desserts. I grew to enjoy their visits. Despite our wildly difference of religions and opinions. Unfortunately, missionaries are moved into new areas quite often, and his time to guide and teach new people came. When his last day with our family came, we all took it hard. But, me especially. I grew to love these young men, and I would miss them. I told Elder Hudson, what an incredible young man he was, how blessed I was to learn from him. How much I would miss his smile. I thanked him for not judging my crazy little family. He asked that the next missionaries, be given a chance, and I vowed that I would give them that. I did. More on that in a minute. Now, I know that missionaries have certain rules, and my goal in life is pretty much ignoring rules that won’t land me in prison. I hugged Elder Hudson goodbye, told him he was loved and would be missed and that it was his time to reach new people. He reluctantly agreed. But I know that he found more people to befriend and care for. We still keep in touch, and I wish that I could have made it to his wedding. But, he called me after the ceremony before he went on his honeymoon. That meant a lot to me. He’s still a wonderful kid, I still miss him very much. I wish I could see him in person, and tell him how proud I am of what a wonderful man he’s become. It’s still hard to see him as a married man, when I still view him as like one of my own.
Now onto Elder Chisholm and Shipp. Lol. What can I say, other than this. I love those two so much. Shipp and I talk almost everyday. These two, when it came to bending rules…definitely broke the mold. We shared so many crazy memories I would need to start a whole new blog to cover it. And we managed this in less than a year’s time. They stayed in my haunted house, played video games ( my son agreed to read scripture from The book of Mormon) only if they played a game with him. They managed to gracefully run from hannafords after one of my kids broke wine bottles, break curfews because of many crises happening in my house at the time. Get me to appointments that LITERALLY saved a life. That’s not said lightly. How do you thank two young men, for giving someone their life back?? Knowing they were risking getting in trouble, but putting protocol aside, because sometimes, love and compassion overrides rules and expectations. There were very few days where I didn’t see these two. We celebrated and baked each other cakes. ( Elder Chisholms and mine are days apart) we dressed up ….why so serious? We ate several dinners , had a million conversations. And through it all, they continued to teach us, all of us. One of my favorite stories is in a church….lol. I hadn’t stepped into a church aside from funerals, since I was a teenager. I went to hear Elder Shipp speak. I’m sorry I forgot what it’s called now. Now I managed to hear all of it, and did well. Despite being hugged as soon as I walked in…..uh huh. I did that for them lol. Well after, they do something similar to communion. Water and bread. So…I decided I might as well try it. I take the bread, eat it drink the water and Alex, my son says…” how did the bread taste” my response…”it tastes like Jesus” I get it. It’s not THAT funny. However what took place after I’ll remember forever. I started giggling. And then…couldn’t stop. It’s like a scene in a movie. Where you’re trying to stop and it keeps getting worse. Then the kids started. By the time I excused myself, I had tears streaming down my face, my nose was running and I had held my breath so long I was dizzy. I literally had to refrain from going back into the room until service was over. Needless to say, I never went back but was genuinely happy I went. I wanted them to see how important they were to us, as a family. Again, the time came to say goodbye. With Elder Hudson, it was hard but losing these two was utterly devastating. Alex and Brianna had become very attached to them. They learned a lot from them, allowed them to get close. Alex said he’d never befriend another missionary. He never did. They impacted our lives, in so many ways that we could never explain. They are the reason, our family is still a family. Why we’ve continually improved. Not because of The book of Mormon, not because I went to church, but because they were there. To listen, to love, and to give peace of mind when everything was goinformed to shit. Elder Chisholm also invited me to his wedding, another sadly I could not attend. But just as in Elder Hudsons, I was there in heart and spirit. I gave him advice, on what NOT to do in his marriage and things he should never forget to continue to do. I hope to see him soon, so I can talk to him like we used to. So I can show him, what he was a part of changing. I miss him very much. Now Shipp….when I see him, we have a lifetime to spend goofing off and being us but I suck at expressing emotion in person. I know he’ll read this and that’s good for now. If I had any thing I could say to him, it would be this. Shipp, you’re so much stronger than you realize. You are loved more than you’ll ever see. The impact you’ve had on so many lives, you will never truly recognize or know. No matter where you go in life, you will be a beacon of hope and light, just by being the wonderful person you are. I know that life hasn’t handed you the best hands, but you have handled each obstacles with grace and acceptance, its because of that, that I KNOW you will persevere through it all. You are never alone, as long as we draw breath, you have a family that loves you for all you are, and all you are not.
I love my missionaries. I miss you all.