Monday, September 16, 2013

Quasi Morri

So sometimes members give us money to buy lunch on the street instead of making us home baked meals, which is exactly what happened on Saturday. We had just finished a once-a-month conference with our mission president and his wife, and decided to go to our favorite restaurant in the downtown. After I finished eating, I realized I couldn't breathe very well, but for some reason just thought it was normal and it would pass. There we are, me and my Brazilian and Argentinian companions, waiting for the bus to arrive, when I seriously cannot breathe. I bend over and start hyperventilating and crying and try to walk. Make it about 10 steps and then can't move much farther--I bend over again and my heart hurts so bad and my stomach is on fire and I am gasping for air and can't get it to my lungs. People are starting to gather and my companions start splashing water on me and sit me down in my skirt in the middle of everyone. I'm hysterical by this point--my hands are completely numb and disfigured and my face is starting to numb as well. Apparently I was swollen and red. Still sucking air, I start to weave in and out of consciousness. I hear Sister Lopez somewhere yelling into a telephone and then the Elders are there and Sister Monteiro. She starts shoving stuff down my throat and the one elder who can speak english keeps saying: I need you to focus, I need you to stay awake, keep your eyes open, look at me. They lay me down on a bench and he puts his hands on my head and gives me a blessing.

It was an interesting moment for me, because I remember feeling stillness in my body. I couldn't breathe, but inside of me for some reason I felt calm. 

Right then Sister Monteiro grabbed some medicine from her purse that she randomly had and starting giving it to me and forcing me to swallow. (I felt like a 2 year old. NOOO MOOMMMMM DON'T MAKE ME EAT MY VEGATABLESSSS!!!!) The car arrived to take me to the hospital and they dragged me across the rest of the terminal. I suddenly had a brilliant idea and was able to say in a tiny raspy voice: Sing.......Come, saints......please......

They all started in, belting ``Come, come Ye Saints`` and I truly couldn't help but smile, so smile I did:) 
They took me to the hospital and brought out a wheelchair, to which I said: Oh my gawsh, fancy!! Never before in my life!!!`` I decided that if I was going to die, I was going to be the girl in the wheelchair cracking jokes before she croacked... 

They stuck a needle in my arm for 15 minutes and a needle in my butt, (there were a lot of jokes for that one,) and drugged me up really really good. I was in a tiny little room in the middle of Brazil with a bunch of other people, needle in my butt, needle in my arm, finally can move my hands, and I just wanted to take a picture. So I did!! (I'm smiling in these pictures because by this point, I was super thrilled to be able to breathe.) 

If Sister Monteiro wouldn't have been in Ponta Grossa that day, with THAT medicine, I would have died. I have a testimony that the Lord is over this work and that He watches out for His missionaries. I also say ``quasi morri`` often in Portuguese because it means ``I almost died`` and I think it's funny to say when I trip. Which is a lot of times in one day. But really, I almost died!! What a day. 

They took me back to my apartment and decided I couldn't stay there one second longer, so I've been emergency transferred, once again, to Curitiba. I had 20 minutes, once again, to pack my bags. I was so drugged and tired. President Monteiro pulled me aside because on Sunday, we baptized my first family here. Oh, a beautiful family and oh, I love them. I wanted to stay for it. He told me that I was important in the conversion of the Pineira family, and they could be my family still, and that he was asking me to please leave Ponta Grossa right now because it was the best thing for my health. 

So, I missed my first family baptized. But, they were baptized and that's what's most important. I may have shed a few tears over this, but tudo bem:) 

I can't eat without having a hard time breathing now and we're not sure what's wrong but I'm a little discouraged because it was a very close call. I was informed this morning there is a good chance I get sent home. A little bit of a rough break, you know? I want to stay here.

The good news is that this week, I raced the boys in the family we're teaching and absolutely destroyed them. And the other good news this week I finally learned how to say ``bowl`` in Portuguese. And the best news of all is that a family I love very much was baptized this week:):) I'm a happy camper. I'm really grateful to be alive. You know? 

I love this work so much. I want to do it and I don't know if I get to anymore, but for heavens sake I will anyways wherever I am. I have such a testimony of the love that the Lord has for His children. I have such a testimony of His involvement in our lives. I know that the Atonement is real and that it works and sometimes hard things happen so we can learn. How great it is to have opportunities to learn:) 

All my love!!

Sister Brooks

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