So, this picture was taken on June 12th. Exactly 2 months after the surgery. At that point I had lost around 40 pounds. That was 10 days ago. Now I'm at 47 to 48 pounds depending on when I stand on the scale and what scale I'm on. In this pic I was wearing pants I have not gotten in for years and the shirts as well. I'm happy for myself and for my family right now. At least in this area. I am not pleased with the lovely tire around my waist that I'm not sure if I'll ever get rid of. This experience has been an interesting one for me. I am told by people there is a very noticeable difference, but most of time it's not something I can see. Yes, I know the reality is that it is different and I can tell when I put on my clothes, but I cannot see it at all. Oh well, I guess it's all going to hit me one day.
Four of my family of 6 were gone for 4 days last week on the pioneer trek in Wyoming. They went to Martins Cove and several other places there. I think they may have really had as close to a real pioneer experience as they could have. The wind broke several tents the first night.
Dan's tent was the first casualty, then his finger as he got a huge fiberglass sliver trying to clean up after the tent. The wind is apparently very unforgiving there. There are sign to prove it. They tell of the pioneer's struggle with the wind. It is cold at night and the wind is frigid. On top of that, our ward had several people who were already injured or got injured during the trek. There is one young man that broke his ankle not long before and really wanted to try and walk some but he was told he would ride. They put him in a handcart first, then they put him in his own handcart fashioned like a wheelchair. Kyler got the opportunity to pull him, along with some help from the Stake President.
I'm told that after that first day, another young man decided it was very important to him to pull him and he held to that decision until they made him stop. We have some good youth and I believe they had a inspiring experience. I think that no matter what they say, they were all glad they went and are changed because of it. I don't have the pics I need on my computer to show you all of them in their pioneer gear, but Dan was the Trek Historian and took something like 1000 pictures. I'll get more on here sometime. Dan was asked to speak on Sunday after the trek and give a synopsis of it. It was touching to see him tear up and have some pretty strong emotion while talking about this. Jake asked me if Dan was sick and going to throw up, I told him no, he's fine, he's just trying not to cry. This really was the experience of a lifetime. There was not a dry eye in the room and the closing song, Come Come Ye Saints, no one could sing.
This is experience from my point of view was another kind. I have gained an appreciation for these people, those mothers and wives who lost their children and husbands, and especially now knowing how it feels to send them off into the unknown and not know if they were OK or not. These were strong women and men and children, and I think in our time, we now have the understanding that maybe we need to appreciate it on another level. They endured unspeakable things and hardships, and so do we in our time experience ours. My hope is that we are now able to appreciate it and meet our hardships with the same unwavering attitudes.
OK, my sermon is over, I hope all are well and thanks for reading.