It's true. I ate a fish eyeball, and I did it of my own accord. It's average tasting. Really salty. I think it grossed out my companion a little, but it's whatever.
T-shirt of the week: It has a picture of two men with looooong beards, and their beards are entwined together. It reads, "Two beards are better than one." I agree.
We visited Sister D and Brother R and baby A several times this week, and wow do I love this family. They are the sweetest, most unified family I've ever met, and even though we're the ones teaching the lessons, I'm learning so much from their examples. I think that's the best kind of teaching situation, when everyone learns together. They've faced so many trials, and the more I get to know them, the more I admire and love them. Our trials in life can either soften our hearts or harden our hearts, depending on how we choose to think of them. As we humble ourselves and trust in the will of our Heavenly Father, we can endure our trials and still have inner peace and happiness. But if we turn inwards, focus on how we think things should be, then we'll never find satisfaction, and we'll constantly be thinking about the difference between how things are and how we want them to be. Sister D and Brother R accept God's will, full stop. All the time. And although their circumstances are challenging, and at times seemingly impossible to overcome, they don't give up, and they don't let fear ruin their marriage. I love them so much, and I'm so grateful that God has put them in my path, because my life has definitely changed because of them.
A few nights ago, I had twenty minutes or so before bedtime, so I went out onto the balcony and played my harmonica (yeah, we have a balcony, is that cool or what?). I played some hymns, whatever songs came into my head, and after I played 'Ye Elders of Israel' (classic! I love that hymn) I paused to ponder something deep and profound... when 'Ye Elders of Israel' echoed in the wind from somewhere above me. At first I thought I was mistaken, but then I heard it again! The mysterious recorder man was playing it back to me! Did I tell you about the mysterious recorder man before? We hear him every week or so, playing all sorts of little diddies from somewhere near our apartment. I looked around at all the nearby buildings, and at first I couldn't locate the source of the music. But then I saw him in the opposite building, several floors above us. Well, I saw his shadow as his head swayed to the music. He transitioned smoothly into Amazing Grace, and I jumped right in, and it was just the neatest moment ever! Like out of a movie or something! After several minutes of playing, he came out onto his balcony and waved at me, and I waved back at him! I couldn't see his face--he was just a black silhouette against the bright light of his apartment. He continued playing as we turned off our lights and went to bed. As we fell asleep to the sound of his recorder, I smiled. Only on the mission.
As we've taught D and R, and as I've thought of my own family this week, I've felt more and more gratitude toward our Heavenly Father for the plan that he has for each of us. After we taught them about this plan of salvation, Sister D told us, "I don't fear death anymore after this lesson. I always was worried that if I died, I might accidentally end up in hell, but now I realize that as long as we're doing our best here on earth, that it will all end up okay." I am so grateful that we could come down to this earth, because there's no other way to learn the things that I've learned. And the more I study the scriptures, the more sure I am that there's a purpose to this life, and that life doesn't end at death. This life is just a tiny point in eternity. We can return to live with our Heavenly Father again, our perfect and loving creator, and with Jesus Christ, our older brother and Savior. Jesus Christ suffered and died for us, so that we too could overcome our mistakes and death. And I love him so much. I look forward to the day when I can see him again and thank him personally for all that he has done for me and my family. I am so grateful that, through this plan of God, we can be with our families forever. I know with all my heart that is true, and so it's not hard for me to be away from them for this short 18 months. I love my Father in Heaven, my Savior, and my beautiful family!