We have survived the first day of Missionary Training…and it was only check-in! In all honesty, viagra it was not that big of a deal for Corey and I, but Maggie and Alex got put through the ringer today! I should note that Maggie was already not feeling real well. She had been upset leaving Michigan so quickly after school ending and didn’t want to leave her dog behind for three weeks. She ended up sick a good deal of the journey from Michigan to Missouri. Then when we arrived she was very nervous about going to “Bootcamp”, the Missionary Kid program for middle schoolers and high schoolers. See, last time we went through this they were in the elementary program, which has lots of adventure but a little less challenge to it. Knowing bits and pieces of what is to come over the next three weeks made her very nervous that she wouldn’t be up to it.

We spent the morning encouraging her that everything was going to be fine…then we arrived for check-in where one of the first items of action involved needles! Alex and Maggie had to have blood drawn and TB tests done. We had not even been on campus for 30 minutes before they were sitting nervously waiting their turn. Maggie has quite the history of extreme strength when faced with needles and impressive lungs, but being that she is older now we thought she’d deal much better this time. We were wrong.

I walked into the room with her and Corey stayed behind with Alex. When the nurse began explaining what she was going to do Maggie looked at me very calmly and said, “I need you to get daddy.” I switched places with Corey, and it’s a good thing I did. She knew she was going to fall apart. She began screaming and pulling her arm away. She was yelling at the nurses “Don’t hurt me!” The poor nurses were feeling guilty but trying their best to keep her still. It became quite an ordeal until Corey could finally hold her in place for them to get it done. Alex followed and was fine until he saw Maggie screaming and then he got nervous. Fortunately he was able to keep calm and get through it but he told me Maggie had completely freaked him out.

So we survived the medical process (at least for that day…they have doctor appointments this week) and went on to MK Orientation. The notebook said this would be a meeting for the kids and parents to tell us what’s going to be going on during camp…but as the MKs will learn in probably any country they go, things rarely go as planned. They told the “bootcampers” they were going to leave immediately, without their parents, and off they went. They were entered into a crazy bazaar. I will describe this as best as I can and maybe one of the kids can jump on here later and explain more. They said it was a dark room with only blacklights, people dressed as military hauling some of them off to jail, some people begging, some people trying to make them bow down and worship someone…absolute chaos. The point is to help them learn how to cope with culture shock. Given Maggie’s already weakened emotional state I was very nervous knowing what she was going into, but both she and Alex left completely excited and happy so they made it through no problem.

As I write this today they are crawling through caves where they’ve been told there are snakes, bats and all other kinds of creatures that they will have to avoid to get through it. Again Maggie leaves nervous and Alex leaves stoked for the challenge. I have no doubt they will come back tonight proud of their accomplishments and at the end of these three weeks they will be so much stronger for all of the trauma they have been through! 🙂

Oh, in case you were worried about Corey and I…we’re sitting through meetings just facing the challenge of staying awake! Haha…actually we’re getting great information it’s just not as fun to write about as what Alex and Maggie are up to!

~Tona