This week, I was on-call. And honestly, I was so tired I was kind of half hoping I wouldn't get it... But I'm really so glad I did! It ended up being such a good week. And I stayed at Helaman Halls which are my favorite of all the places I've stayed for sure.
This week, I had the older kids again! Woot! We called ourselves "Forever Bearing". We had so many crazy, fun, spiritual, awesome times. Fantastic week!
1. I was so excited this week when I found out I had two co's again! Logan was so fun with two and I knew it was gonna be good. I was surprised when I realized it was two BOY co's though. I didn't know that even happened! But Jake and Matt are such great, fun, guys and I loved working with them. I noticed that for some reason since I was the only girl, I found myself being super dominant sometimes for unknown reasons... but thankfully they didn't get too upset with me. Clearly, they just couldn't get enough of me, though. :)
2. Having two boy co's meant that I had DOUBLE the boys this week! I was so thankful when I found out they were older kids. I don't think I could have handled twenty 14-year old boys. Can you even imagine? Ha! Especially since my co's were both on variety show duty, haha. But goodness. This was a party! These boys were so hilarious. They were a bit goofy and outspoken sometimes, but they were so much fun. And they really had amazing testimonies! They're definitely all going to be great missionaries.
3. I had girls with some awesome attitudes. I had one girl who had prosthetic legs and had to walk a little bit slower than everyone else, and we had a looooong walk to our morningsides and other meetings. But she just had the greatest attitude about it! Always a smile on her face, never complained once. She was such an example to me of how to be happy no matter what is thrown your way. I also had another cute girl from Logan so maybe I'll see her when LDV sings at high schools this year! She had the strongest testimony and was always sharing the greatest stories that strengthened me and the rest of the girls. She was so mature. All my girls were just wonderful though. Sadly, I had one girl that got really sick and ended up having to go home on Thursday, but she was so sweet as well. I loved getting to know all of these girls!
4. This time, our session directors were from England! The McReynolds were wonderful teachers and I learned so much from them. It was also fun to hear their accents (not gonna lie, it made me want to watch Harry Potter real bad, haha). But they were so full of the spirit and taught me many things I needed to hear. I especially loved this lesson they did for the YW on Thursday. They had one of my girls come down and look in this mirror and tell everyone what she saw. After this, they asked her what she hoped to see in 10 years. I took a good look inside myself trying to figure out what I would have said. I have a lot of hopes and dreams for myself, but mostly, in 10 years I want to be married and have kids. I want to be a mother so bad.
5. The team I worked on this week, Shawn and Aimee's, is such a fun team! I loved getting to know the BC's and coordinators better this time. I worked with them my first week but I was too nervous about it to really think about talking to them much, haha. But I had lots of opportunities to chat with them, and I seriously love them! They're so funny. And you can tell they've loved working as a team and have really become a family. It made me think of possibly being a BC next summer if I have the chance. We'll see...
6. This week I found myself presented with a lot of one-on-one teaching opportunities. Whether it was with some boys who were having a bad attitude, or with some girls at lights out, I was blessed with a lot of times where I knew the kids needed to hear something specific from me. One example: as we were walking back from the Tuesday dance, two of the boys asked if they could escort me. As we were walking, they started telling me about how at their previous EFY, they had had a counselor that would let them do anything they wanted. This included leaving campus, skipping activities they didn't want to go to, staying up late, and sleeping in. They told me how this week wasn't as fun for them because their counselor was following all the rules. I had the opportunity to talk to them about why we have the rules, and about how with a good attitude, you can have fun no matter what the circumstances. I don't know if they quite believed me, but I think I planted the seeds, and then told my co about it. Later that night, he texted me and said that he had talked to them and shown them a scripture and asked them to pray about it. He then said they came to him crying a few minutes later because they had felt the spirit so strongly about what we had talked to them about. It was SO cool to see them have a change of heart that didn't come from either of us counselors, but that came from the Spirit. They were basically angels the rest of the week, didn't complain once. So amazing!!
7. This week, since it was another small session, I had lunch duty every. single. day. And every time I had a duty, I was placed back by the bathrooms, making sure the kids didn't go downstairs during lunch. I think my kids started to think I hated them, haha. Luckily I had a really good book to read, so I was entertained. But my kids would come back and talk to me every day so that was sweet. :) On the last day, I caught some of my girls sneaking pictures of me reading in that chair. I hope I'm remembered as more than just the counselor that read books all the time, ha!
8. I sang for everyone again this week. I was actually pretty worried about it when it came closer though because I was starting to feel pretty sick. My throat was sore (after 6 weeks of EFY you kinda do a lot of talking, singing, and screaming, it hurts your voice a bit). And I was concerned that I wasn't going to be able to sing. When I got to the soundcheck that morning, it still seemed bad. I said a quick prayer that I'd be able to just have the spirit with me as I sang, since that is the most important aspect of singing at EFY, and that I would be able to sing well if it was His will. As I sang for those kids, I felt myself strengthened and knew that it was only through Heavenly Father that I actually did a good job. It reminded me of that scripture in Alma 26:12 "I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God". Because it truly was one of those times. I know I couldn't have done it without His help, because the rest of the day my voice was so scratchy! I'm thankful for that blessing.
9. 16-18 year old boys are pretty big flirts! They were trying to flirt with me more often than not. Especially as I was sitting in the chair on lunch duty. They would come back and try all sorts of pick-up lines on me, ask me for my number, and just be goofy. It was pretty funny. The best times though were the times when they didn't realize I was a counselor and would legitimately start flirting with me. Then they'd see the nametag (this only happened on Thursdays when I was in Sunday clothes instead of the polo.. Yeah apparently I look like I'm 16. It's fine) and get all awkward and freaked out and back away. Haha. It was fun.
10. I kind of already mentioned this, but one of the best parts of EFY is getting to watch people's transformations. As they come to know their Savior and love the Gospel more, they just become happier. EFY is amazing because it teaches people about the gospel and how to live it, not because it's great in and of itself. It teaches people how to be happy in all sorts of different situations, and most kids come away with a knowledge of that. I got to watch a lot of kids who had decided they weren't going to have a good attitude about this week turn it around and come away with stronger testimonies, and wishing they could stay another week.
SUCH a good week! Even though I was soooo tired, I really loved it. It was a different experience having so many boys, and it tested me in some new ways which was good. I can't believe I only have one week left! I love the gospel and this program so much, and have been so incredibly blessed to be a part of it!