28 July 2016

Onward and Upward Forever!

There was no way I was standing on that escalator,
so instead I just ran down the escalator!
Well, it happened. I am home!! And right now it is 5 am in Utah which makes it 12 in England! I cannot sleep, even though I have slept maybe 5 hours of the last 48.... so I decided to write and say how much I miss my mission already!!! Taking off that badge was so painful, and as I sat in the stake president's office with my family, I just cried. Don't waste one second of your time there because just like that it is all over. I am still in shock.

Let's start at the departing dinner. How beautiful that evening was as we enjoyed a nice meal prepared by the beautiful Sister Stevens, and afterward we all sat in their living room and had the opportunity to ask them questions about the future and share our testimonies. It was such a special experience, but at this point, it still didn't feel real. 

Just following, we walked over to the Hyde Park Chapel to take a group photo, and for 5 of the missionaries to go and see their family for the first time in 18 months to 2 years. The five of them went downstairs and the rest of us followed, and when I stepped into that room I immediately began to cry seeing everyone with their families. That was such a surreal moment! I finally got it together and all 14 of us sang a song for everyone that Sister Wai had put together, a medley of "Each life that touches ours for good," and "Sisters in Zion/Armies of Helaman". The words were changed to talk about us finishing our missions here in London. That was such a powerful moment. At the end, I just lost it and began to sob uncontrollably. I couldn't finish singing the song because l was just crying. I couldn't believe it was actually here! Well, I gave Sister Williams a long hug and we both just cried, met Sister Mussmans parents and Elder Packer's mum, all the while Elder Williams and President were all trying to usher the 5 of us out who were going to the hotel because we were running late. This part I wasn't expecting... I walked up through the visitors center and out the door one last time. I hugged President and Sister Stevens one last time. And I just cried! And pretty much the whole 30 minutes to the hotel I couldn't get it together! I felt a piece of my heart was being ripped right out of my chest. 

Well, we made it to the hotel at like 1130, didn't get much sleep because the bed sucked, then woke up at 6 to go to the airport, sister Wai had to leave earlier to catch her flight, so for the first time in 18 months I was completely alone.... With an Elder. Haha Elder Crawley was my seat buddy! He was way cool so it was good:)

Travel all day was long, but not too bad... And before I knew it I felt the plane land in Utah and I saw once again the beautiful Utah mountains that I love so much.

We got off the plane, and as we walked down to baggage claim, I just cried the whole time. It didn't feel real that I actually was going to be seeing my family in a few short minutes! I will never forget running down those stairs to see my mum and dad and my 3 brothers, who are SOO different than when I left, to give them a big hug. It's as wonderful and great as you dream about! My mom kept looking at me and saying, "I can't believe it is you!" We all just cried. It felt so natural to be with all of them again! Just like I remembered, my days I love my family!!!!!!! 

After that, we went to see my cute gramps who is not well, and then to the Stake President to be released. The whole 30 minutes sitting in there with my family, as he asked me to share an experience from my mission and some things I learned, I just cried. He read the letter to release me, and I cried even harder. I can't believe it's over, now just memories. 

My mission means the absolute world to me. I cannot imagine being a wife and a mother raising kids in this world without the many things I learned and experiences I had while in England. I will forever be changed because I chose to serve the Lord for 18 months! That was hands down the best decision I have ever made. I love my Saviour even more now! I will forever follow in His footsteps.


Sister Sara Ranck

Elder and Sister Gale from the mission office. They are amazing!!!

Elder and Sister Williams from the office! They are two of my favourite people in this world!

My best friend Kalli Suesue Williardson! It  was so amazing to see her again!

Thomas's Selfie the first time I hug him...! My brothers a goof!

Before he even gave me a hug Thomas was taking selfies to capture this epic moment!

Check out these creepy masks... I died when I saw them...!

This is Elder Crawley, the Elder I traveled home with!

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