Well, for those who don't know yet - I received my mission call yesterday! I will be serving for two years starting July 6th, 2011 in the Salt Lake City South mission in the English language. I just wanted to take a few minutes to reflect on my thoughts and feelings after receiving the call.
First off...whoa! Nothing makes the idea of serving a mission more real than receiving the physical call letter. For the last few months I've been preparing, saving money, and thinking about where I might go. I can keep doing the first two, but there's no need to wonder about where I'm going...because SLC it is! I still have roughly three and a half months until I report to the MTC but knowing where I'm going solidifies things quite a bit!
Salt Lake City. When I had talked to friends and joked about "ironic" places I could go, I got many responses. Salt Lake City, oddly enough, was not one of them! Really, though, what location is more "ironic" than Salt Lake City! I had a friend open the call and read it. She snuck a peek at the location and the look on her face when she saw it told me, "This is going to be good!"
My thoughts? This is going to be pretty awesome! Why, might you ask? Well, aside from the fact that I'm confident the First Presidency placed me in a mission that will be a perfect fit for me, there are reasons. A mission in Salt Lake provides a unique experience. No, it won't be anything out of "The Other Side of Heaven", but still unique. Being a convert and living in Virginia my whole life, I'm now going to be in the middle of "LDS culture". Who knows, during my mission I could realisitically attend live General Conference sessions, meet General Authorities, and visit more than one temple. From what I hear, there is never a shortage of people to teach while serving a Utah mission. (I've also heard I'll be taken very good care of by the members - lots of free meals. Nope, not complaining here!) Oh, not to mention that I'll be serving the Lord for two years!
The bottom line? I'm excited! I'm excited to go on my mission, excited to be serving in Salt Lake City, and excited for the amazing experience I know it will be. I've really appreciated my friends who have given me advice and told me personal stories from their missions. Can I make one request? Please refrain from telling me any more of these stories until mid-June - because if I get too much more excited about this mission, I might not make it to July 6th!