Elder Jarom Travis Odom

My photo
Philippines Cauayan Mission

Wednesday, July 24, 2013


Elder Odom at Banaue - notice the rice terraces on the side of the mountains - beautiful!

Pretty handsome missionary!  (I admit - I MAY be biased!)

 Jarom and his reptiles!

First Balut, and now this!  When he comes home he can get a job on that TV show, Bazaar Foods!

My favorite!

Typhoid: 2 - Jarom: 0

Dear Mom,
I am going to email you what happened this week.  We went to Banaue Monday and it was super fun and then Tuesday I woke up feeling super sick and then tried to wait it out.  I had 104.2 fever for three days straight, and I had a fever from Tuesday until Saturday morning.  This type of Typhoid was much worse than the first time and the doctor told me it was very good that I went to the hospital because this time it was very dangerous.  My white blood cell levels and platelet levels were dangerously low.  I had the worse headache in my life for a week, and every joint in my body hurt from every joint in my fingers to every joint in my toes.  My stomach felt like The Incredible Hulk jumped in it and started to do some work.  I didn't eat for a week and had one - one liter bottle of water in four days.  I also went five days without sleeping.  Last Monday I was 205 pounds.  Today is Monday and I am now 175 pounds.  Thirty pounds in one week!  Imagine the worse flu, stomach virus, body pains and aches, and every other awful feeling. Then triple that. After that, double that.  Then you're not even halfway there.  That's what I felt like for this past week, but I am still alive and it's a cool story to tell!  I am doing great though.  I haven't shaved in five days, so I have been chilling with the mission president and his wife with a beard and they don't care!  It hurts to walk and move, so it's fine.  I survived it and I'm recovering more and more each day.  I love y'all and a little advice: don't eat or drink bad water - you could die!
Love, Elder Odom
We had the opportunity to talk to Jarom Sunday morning.  I think it had something to do with me crying as I was talking to President Rahlf Saturday evening!  Jarom sounded good and had a positive attitude.  He said his companion had given him a blessing and it didn't say anything about dying!  He also gave us few more details about his experience.  When it was determined that he needed to be in the hospital, his President wanted him near the mission home, so he had to travel five hours by jeepney with multiple changes along the way.  I cannot imagine how horrible it must have been to have to make such a difficult journey feeling like you just want to lay down and die.  Once he arrived, he was so dehydrated that they could not get an IV in him at first.  When they finally got an IV started, it infiltrated and his hand swelled up.  The third time is a charm, however, and he was able to get the fluids he so desperately needed.  I was worried to find out how low his platelets and white cells were.  The platelets help to clot the blood and a low white count means his body cannot fight off infections as efficiently.
I received an email from Sister Rahlf today, and she assured me Jarom is doing much better.  She writes, "He's had a fairly quiet routine and is gaining strength back quickly.  He's eating well and sleeping well...every day we are seeing improvement in his strength and stamina."
I am very thankful to know that Elder Odom is in Heavenly Father's hands and that He is taking care of him.  I'm thankful for President and Sister Rahlf and for the love and good care they are giving to him.  I am also thankful for the healing power of The Priesthood. 

Monday, July 1, 2013

Glimpses of Beautiful Lagawe Philippines

I am wondering how high this swinging bridge is because my baby son DOES NOT like hights!