I was really nervous about opening my call. The build up of excitement, nervousness, anxiety, and stress that had come from waiting all day made it worse. I was pretty sure my call would be to somewhere in the States English or Mandarin speaking or somewhere outside of the States Mandarin speaking. (All of my China Expat friends had been called to Mandarin speaking missions in CA, England, Hong Kong, and Taiwan). How wrong I was.
After opening the envelope, I slowly pulled out my mission call and was finally brave enough to look at it and read it. What I saw shocked me. The huge gasp and surprised look on my face got my friends and family anxious and they were soon begging to know where my mission would be. Slowly, I read the first statements of my letter to them:
Dear Sister Dyer:
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 Brazil Natal Mission.
Both my friends and family were stunned. I continued:
You should report to the Brazil Missionary Training Center on Wednesday, September 11, 2013. You will prepare to preach the gospel in the Portuguese language.
My friends were all cheering at this point. However, my family and I were still shocked. I mean, me? Going to Brazil? Speaking Portuguese? Wow! That was one country I was definitely not expecting. And it was also the one country that none of my family or friends had betted on.
Although my family was shocked, they finally came to and congratulated me. After doing a little bit of research, we found out that my mission is located on the North Eastern Coast of Brazil and is a new mission that will open in July. We also found out that "Natal" means "Christmas" in Portuguese.