Friday, September 13, 2013

Lost in Rome

From the Editor:  So Kaitlin has left her small-town, island living far behind and is adjusting to the hustle-bustle of city living in Rome.  

One of the advantages of serving in Rome is that the APs can come pick you up when you get stranded.  

One of the, umm, other advantages is that the mission president's wife might use your experiences as metaphors for her "spiritual thoughts":

From Kaitlin:

First full week in Rome and I came out pretty much unharmed.  The weird thing about being in Rome is that you guys know everything before I email you about it.  I don't even have anything to say anymore.  Sorella Waddoups already stole my grand story... 

Yes, it is my grand story because it's probably one of the most eventful things that happened this week.  
We have spent a LOT of time at bus stops this week. 


 Like, I don't even know where to start.  Our first day I got to pick up my greenie from the villa.. Sorella Victoria Foster.. she is great.. and SO patient.. which is needed because I went and got her and then said,  "So I don't know where we are going."   

Everyone told me to be confident and pretend like I know things, but I had to be honest.  

I know nothing.  

But I DID take her to the Coloseo the first day and get her gelato (mostly so I could start figuring out the subway system) and that's where we got lost.  

Trevi Fountain

Spanish Steps

My Grand Story
I took the metro back to our stop giving myself a good 30 minutes before we needed to be home on time. (That's the max it takes in Cagliari, so I thought I was good.)  

Unfortunately there is only ONE bus that I KNOW takes us home, 
so we waited for it.. 
and waited.. 
and waited.. 
and an hour and a half later I gave up on my pride and called the elders... 

They were just like, "We'll just send the assistants to come get you.

so embarassing. so, so embarassing.  

We finally got home around 10.  I felt so bad for my new greenie.. breaking rules the first day. Then Sorella Waddoups comes up to me on Sunday and tells me the same story she wrote on her blog and I knew.. I knew it was going on the blog.. so embarrassing. 

Lost... the series
So most of this week has been spent getting lost:  
getting lost on the way to church, 
getting lost trying to find an UPDATED bus map, 
getting lost on the way to appointments, 
just getting lost.  

Most days I come home and I think, 

"Why in the world do they trust me to do this?"  

Figure It Out
Starting in a new area is really hard. 

I have to figure out the city.. how the ward works.. how to train someone to be a missionary.. what the needs of all our investigators are.. how to work in the same ward with 8 elders and the mission president.. 

Yes there are 10 missionaries in our ward and we are the only sisters.  
Whenever we are by the church we always run into the elders, so I snapped a photo...
proselyting in Italy.

Plus I got made Sister Training Leader again and I already have scambis (exchanges) planned for this week, so I've been really stressed out this week. 

Training my Sidekick
I felt really bad for my new companion because I want to be a really good trainer for her.  I want to do everything really well and I haven't been very patient with myself.  

But luckily she is really patient with me and is positive and hard working. seriously a blessing. and she is so so so funny. Whenever I'm stressed, she makes me laugh by something she does or says or a face she makes.  

Three Generation Photo:  Cojan (came to visit from France!) - O'Connor - Foster

I really like her a lot--She is like the sidekick character in every movie, which makes me happy... like the Patrick to Spongebob or the Dory to Marlin & Nemo ... cosi via.. really though.. it's a weird funny, but I like it, hah.

The Help
So sorry, not a lot of fun things to update you on.   I've just been stressed a lot because I want to do a good job and be a good missionary.  But I feel like I don't have the capacity to do it all.  

I was at the metro stop the other day and I was just enveloped in thought... thinking about how I can do it all.. how I can do a good job... how I can organize myself better and do better and get better numbers and cosi via.. 

and I just had the thought come into my mind: "Just serve them.

And that was it;  that was all I needed:  to be reminded to just serve.  I looked around and remembered that I was in the middle of the city with hundreds of people piling onto the metro and a brand new missionary by my side who looked just as lost as I felt.  

I needed that reminder to serve right then and there with the people I was with.  

So now when I'm stressed, I just remind myself to serve where I am and do what I can and Heavenly Father will do the rest.  He's the man in charge.. I'm just the help.  It sounds strange, but it really helped me a lot. 

"I Made It!"
I don't want to sound like everything is difficult and depressing though.. I really love Rome.  It's so beautiful.  

 Often I walk  down the street and I just think, "Wow, I made it... I'm in Rome".   

We did finding the other day at Villa Borghese and Sorella Foster gave away two copies of the Book of Mormon.. her first ones which was cool!)   

There was just this incredible view over the city... the city where Peter and Paul once taught... 

and now it's us.  

How cool is that?  

... Name Them One By One
There is literally no better mission in the world.  So Sorella Foster and I started counting our blessings. 

Every night we write down the miracles we've seen.  Even though it felt like I was just waiting at bus stops all day, I realized that even there we find miracles. 

sweet blessing - man playing the violin on the bus

So that's it for this week.  I haven't seen the pope yet.  He's actually headed to Sardegna this month.

Even Better
Anziano Ballard is coming this Sunday to split the stakes (congregational groups - See Isaiah 54:2) because they are adding another one here in ROME.  There is going to be a huge conference and I'm so so so so excited for it.  

Rome is the best.  It's completely different from Cagliari but I love it so much.  It's getting easier and we are adjusting a lot and I just feel so blessed. blessed to serve.  I love being a missionary.  It's the best decision I've ever made. 

Also thanks so much Mom for the package! I loved it. We watched Mormon Messages until it was time for bed yesterday.  

Also I loved the music too... I love music.. but I still don't know why you won't just let me have Coldplay... you keep teasing me with these other not as good versions of the real thing. torture. 

(Answer:   recreational harrassment.  she shouldn't have to go 18 months without it.  plus, Coldplay, really?? I don't know...)

BUT I still loved the cd.  Also every time you said JT I had to remind myself that it wasn't Justin Timberlake you saw.  (James Taylor did a concert with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Utah Symphony.)
The original "JT"

Also we had tourists at church on Sunday which I loved because they gave me the updates on the BYU football games.  (Thanks for the shirt too.. loved it all.)

Miss you guys a lot! 

With love from Roma,
Sorella OConnor 

(Email Sent - September 11, 2013)

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