Sunday, July 8, 2012

My San Antonio: "Moms of Mormon missionaries bond together"

Missions are probably the hardest on the mothers of young Mormon missionaries. It's a challenge to send a son or daughter away for 18 to 24 months, often to a remote corner of the world, with only a weekly letter or email and twice-yearly phone calls to fill the void after some 20 years of nearly constant contact. But as a missionary leaves, a bond develops between the parents of missionaries, as we share stories and experiences with other missionary parents. We have several other missionaries out from our ward currently, and we enjoy talking with their parents and reading reports about their experiences, including in the ward missionary newsletters that we have shared here on Elliot's blog.

A group of moms from Mesa, Arizona, have taken that experience to a new level. Several missionary moms (pictured) gather monthly to share their experiences and lend support to each other. From a recent story in My San Antonio online:
"We come together once a month to get connected with moms," said Debbie Forrest, whose son, Aaron, is serving in Spain right now. "It's inspirational for us. Sometimes a missionary is having a tough time. We're supporting each other. It's tough as a mom when you hear your son is struggling and you can't even call him. You get an email, but that's not enough."
Another missionary mom, Kim Riches, put it this way.
"Nobody told me how really hard it is on the mom," she said. "You know it's hard, but it's really hard. You wouldn't have him anywhere else, but it's really hard."
And while much of the support these moms provide to each other is emotional, there is a lot of practical support too.
"With the moms group, whenever someone has a question - someone once needed to figure out how to send a package - one of the other moms has had experience with that. Whatever question you have or whatever issue you're facing, it's such a support because there is someone who understands and can figure out what to do," Kim said.
It's a great story about being a missionary mom and well worth the time to give it a read.

1 comment:

  1. Dear Elder Adair,
    My son, Dallin Gardner was just called to Oklahoma City, OK Spanish Speaking mission. He leaves Jan. 23rd for MTC. He turned 18 in August. Any advice for him? It's all happened so quickly. I'd love to connect with your mom.
    Thanks, Sister Gardner