The Saga Continues

The doctor got worried and ordered me to stay in the hospital for an observation period of at least 24 hours. I tried to make the case that I really was feeling better and that the elevated CPK count was probably due to the flu that I was coming out of and that there was really no need for me to stay in the hospital. I grabbed my little IV bag and walked out to the nurse’s station. The doctor – a little female fireball of about 40 years of age – also came out and started asking questions. She didn’t like the way I was thinking and explained carefully but clearly and forcefully that I wasn’t going anywhere. The Mission President came and did his best to also avoid the hospital trip but in the end that rolled me up to the 11th floor where they had a free room available, tossed me inside, and shut the door. At one point that night, I tried walking downstairs to the cafeteria, but the nurses gently reminded me that, “I wasn’t going anywhere.”

So Sunday passed by in the hospital. I slept in the hospital bed and my companion slept on the hospital couch by my side. Monday rolled around without event – and without any exams. I was pleased to get a nice hot breakfast, lunch, and dinner, all which I happily split with my companion. But…the President found out that I was dividing my meals and told my companion to go downstairs and grab a sandwich. Sad days. Monday night/Tuesday morning at around 2 a.m. they drew my blood to see if anything was wrong. Tuesday morning at 10:00 the doctor came in to inform me that…nothing was wrong. By Tuesday afternoon, after 48+ hours in the hospital bed, I started to lose my mind. I felt like Martha Stewart in prison. Inappropriate? Oh well. By the way, is she out yet? I digress. But Tuesday night we were released. A really nice hospital there, really, I recommend it to all who fall ill while serving a mission in Recife.

The week following the hospital visit my companion came down with a bad cold/cough, probably due to the hyper-active air conditioner and the fact that they refused to give him a blanket/extra sheets because he wasn’t registered into the hospital. I acted really cold, so they would give us a few extra. It sort of worked. But, regardless, he got sick at the hospital. Which is ironic.

This last weekend, however, (the one in May) my companion made a special invitation to the boy’s whose house had flooded and he accepted, so we had a baptism! It was the first investigator that he personally had baptized, so it was a special experience for all of us. The boy/man (20 years old?) came out of the waters feeling light and clean. Everybody’s happy. He will get confirmed this next week.

We had a general authority come to our mission this last Thursday/Friday. I was asked to play the piano at the last minute and did my best. I tried to accompany a musical number with the first practice being the performance. It was more or less a musical catastrophe. Or cacophony. Or whatever. I was comforted by Churchill’s words, “Sometimes doing your best is not good enough. Sometimes you must do what is required.” Luckily, people are sweet and generous and most everybody smiled.

The general authority, Elder Leal, had some interesting words to say about the use of the Book of Mormon and Preach My Gospel in the mission. We all walked away with a renewed vision of how to use the “Keystone of our Faith” more integratedly (is that a word?) in our work.

The President asked for some missionaries to be personally interviewed by the General Authority. I was asked to be interviewed. I’m not really sure why. But I hope that I won’t get transferred to the East Palo Alto mission. That would be…difficult… It all went well in the interview. He’s a very congenial guy, asked about my family, asked about my work as a District Leader. We hugged, we shook hands, we said good-bye, and we all went home happy.

In other news, all is well. I’m back to 100%, and my companion too. And, pretty soon (June 16th) there’s a transfer. I have a feeling that… Well I really have no idea what will happen. I’ll just keep working until then.

God Bless.
You are in my prayers and the prayers of all we meet.

-Elder Fleming-


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