Recently, one of our good friends, a senior missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints whom we served with, commented that she wasn't prepared for how hard some of the adjustments would be when she served a mission. She said she had really only heard about the joys and blessings from others who had come home and reported about their missions. She had never considered the difficulties she might encounter.
She's not alone.
Many, if not most, young elders and sisters, as well as seniors, arrive in the mission field with lofty expectations based on the reports of previous missionaries.