Wednesday, June 1, 2011

elder gregory chance bird:]

Dear Elder Bird:

You are hereby called to serve as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the Michigan Lansing Mission. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 24 months.

You should report to the Missionary Training Center on Wednesday, March 3, 2010. You will prepare to teach the gospel in the English language. Your assignment may be modified according to the needs of your mission president.

You have been recommended as one worthy to represent the Lord as a minister of the restored gospel. You will be an official representative of the Church. As such, you will be expected to maintain the highest standards of conduct and appearance by keeping the commandments, living mission rules, and following the counsel of your mission president. As you devote your time and attention to serving the Lord, leaving behind all other personal affairs, the Lord will bless you with increased knowledge and testimony of the Restoration and of the truths of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Your purpose will be to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. As you serve with all your heart, might, and strength, the Lord will lead you to those who are prepared to be baptized.

The Lord will reward you for the goodness of your life. Greater blessings and more happiness than you have even yet experienced await you as you humbly and prayerfully serve the Lord in this labor of love among His children. We place on you our confidence and pray that the Lord will help you become an effective missionary.

You will be set apart as a missionary by your stake president. Please send your written acceptance promptly, endorsed by your bishop.

                                                  Thomas S. Monson


I've never loved/hated a piece of paper more than that mission call i watched him carefully hold in his hands. I tried to hold back the sea of tears forming in my eyes. I didn't want to look like a big bawl baby in front of his entire family. When i finally contained my self i got up to give him a hug. I felt the excitement and nervousness flowing through him. This little eighteen year old boy was about to be thrown out of his comfort zone and rushed into reality. No idea where he was going to live, who he would be living with, who he was going to teach. At the moment he knew nothing of what would be in store for him in the next two years and neither did I.

March 2, 2010 he was ordained as an elder. We also fought that night believe it or not. He took so long to get ready and i was sitting by the kitchen table freaking out because i still needed to go home and change. He didn't understand apparently and kept taking his time. If i would have known he would have taken so long i would have drove his truck and gotten dressed. Time was up and there i was still in jeans. He told me it'd be okay i could wear what i had on. How embarrassing. So we drove to the church and i watched him leave and i took his truck and went home unable to see him be ordained. The whole drive home i cried uncontrollably because i knew it was finally real. That call he had received four months prior was finally coming true. He was leaving tomorrow.

There was a knock on the door. It was chance and Taylor coming to pick up the truck. I couldn't even get my self up to answer the door. When we walked in i couldn't help but stare. He was different I'm not sure what was different but he was. I couldn't explain it. I got up to hug him and that's when i lost it. I've never cried so hard in my life. As Oprah calls it the "ugly cry" that's what i did. Good thing i buried my face in his suit so that he couldn't see. I couldn't stop hysterically crying for about ten minutes i felt horrible i had tried so hard to not let him see me cry, i didn't want to make anything harder for him than it already was but as hard as i tried they kept bursting out.

We took a few pictures with my family and then he was gone.

There is nothing like the feeling of something being ripped away from you. i felt as if my heart was literally going to explode. I couldn't hardly sleep i had a million thoughts flowing in my head. How on earth am i going to do this? He's not even gone and I'm a wreck. Everything i had know for the past two years was going to change. I hated when he went to Sunshine or St. Louis for a baseball trip i thought i had it bad then. I could still text him and he would still call me every night but now......everything is different. Chance and Taylor ended up coming back to my house in the morning so that i could give Taylor his baseball hair cut. He came over and i savored every second i had left with him. For a little while i was actually able to enjoy the company of him and his brother. I wasn't worried about the next two years in that moment.

time to go.
as much as i tried to fight the inevitable i watched him drive away. To my shock i didn't cry my mom did but i held my own. Probably because i cried it all out the night before. Sure i would cry again that night but somehow it was going to be okay.

Elder Bird is now two days away from only having nine more months left to serve:] Its incredible how having someone so far away from you brings you closer. Long distance relations don't work. High school sweethearts never work. Waiting for your missionary never works. But like he's told me all along we are the exception.
I've never been so proud of another person all my life. It's funny how you can see the growth of someone just by a few words on a page. I've learned more about love in the last year & three months than the whole two years that we were dating. The fact that i get butterflies opening the mailbox is enough to know what i haven't forgotten that shy, tall, blue eyed boy. I love that boy. I can't even explain how excited i am to have him come home. He's still the same Chance that i fell in love with a few years ago but somehow its different. He's him but he's a man. I love the subtle changes i notice in his letters. The love that he has for strangers that he's just met is memorizing. Who would have ever thought this is where we'd end up.
i am the luckiest girl in the world.

only 9 months & 279 days left:] but who's counting?


  1. Oh how familiar this post is to me.
    You are so cute and I love this :) He'll be home before you know it, dear!

  2. i love you chelsea like for real:] will you and todd just get married already??

    did you know chance and todd are related somehow?? FAMILy:]