Well, it happened! We got the long-awaited phone call from our Stake President Tuesday night, and he calmly informed us that Hannah was cleared to go back to the MTC (Missionary Training Center) in Provo, Utah. After all her doctor appointments, it's been determined that she's well enough from her sickness (she had mononucleosis...ugh!) for her to go back out on her mission. They needed her either Wednesday or Thursday. Since Wednesday was the very next day, we said, "How about Thursday?" From that minute on, it was a go!
We had gone through this process already. Last September 17, 2014, we tearfully and proudly deposited our daughter on the doorstep of the MTC as she began her mission preparation for the Bakersfield California Mission. What we didn't know was that, even at that time, she was sick...very sick. That very week that we dropped her off, she became extremely ill with swollen lymph nodes all throughout her neck, throat, and stomach areas, giving her a fearful sore throat, awful nausea, plus she became feverish and lost 11 pounds in four days. By the time she came home, she was only consuming water. It was pretty awful for her. But, like I said, she had been showing all the signs of mono before she left, we just had no idea at all. That's what you get for burning the candle at both ends.
How can you prepare for something out of the blue like that? Well, what happened was that we got a call on the following Tuesday and were informed how sick she was and that it was best she recovered at home since this illness has a year / year-and-a-half recovery time, and that it would be difficult to know when she'd be well enough to go back out serving a full-time mission. Up at 6:30 a.m. and running until 10 p.m. She just couldn't do it. We're not even sure she can do it now. But six months later, and hopefully enough recovery time, we're putting our trust in the Lord with much faith and, having experienced many a miracle in our lives, we know that if its the Lord's will, it'll happen. Add to that a healthy dose of prayers, and we truly hope that she's able to accomplish this goal she's had since it was announced that young women could serve earlier at age 19.
So, lucky us, we got to go through the entire process of getting Hannah ready to go on her mission again--more lists, more harried errands (but we were happy!) and then on to reorganizing, recounting, and repacking... Much fun, as you can imagine... We are extremely proud of Hannah and her decision to serve the Lord by spreading His gospel message upon this earth, readying all within her reach for that special day of reckoning. Hope we get it right...right?
There were tears, much hugging, and urging to write from both ends. So those of you out there who might like to support and encourage our little one--who's not so little anymore--please feel free to write to her and send pictures and loving support from time to time. We would appreciate it very much, and I know she will too.
Here's some photos from our day together. Yes, we left early this morning and drove all day there and back again. One day! At least last time, we spread it out in two days. We just didn't have that kind of time this time, and so decided to just go for it. What a day!
Here's to you and your loved ones,
Devin, Ellise & family
P.S. We love you, Hannah! <3
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