I was 15. We were moving. Forced to leave my friends, my school, my home, all that I had ever cared about and would ever care about, or so I thought. My family was told of a church trip that my new congregation would be holding. My mom told me that I would be going so that I could make friends before we moved. It was a trip to the Manti temple in Utah. I had no desire to make friends, but I went and I sat next to a girl that I figured I could get along with for the week.
There was this little 14 year old boy that sat a little ways behind me on the bus. He was very nice. But I refused to make friends with anyone but the one person I had to sit next to. To my dismay this young boy followed me around that whole first day. After a while he started talking to my new friend instead of me. This just meant that he followed us around more. After the trip this little boy decided to get my number from someone and start texting me. "Who does this kid think he is?!" I thought. I rudely told him to leave me alone. And he did. Until one year later.
The next year I sat next to that same kid in my Chemistry class. I learned his name for the first time, Joseph Dallin. We became good friends that year. He was actually really cool! He always made me laugh. We got in trouble a lot by our teacher because we never seemed to pay attention. I apologized for being rude the year prior, and he explained that he was just trying to be nice to the new girl. He said I looked upset and he wanted to help. He was right.
The next year we parted ways a little. We were still friends. An occasionally "hi" in the hallway. But that was all.
Summer came around and we started hanging out again. I was introduced to "the group" which was composed of a bunch of guys and occasionally one or two girls. It was one of the best summers! There was not a care in the world. Our days were full of game nights, bubblebath hot tubs, paint balling, and movie nights.
Then I went to college. But something kept drawing me back to home. One day I decided to take a trip home to surprise the group. I showed up at Joseph's door and after that day something changed. I felt something for him. But I wouldn't admit it. We were best friends and I wasn't going to ruin that.
A couple weeks later I was in town again and his date bailed. He asked me if I would fill in on a group date to go ice skating. I am terrible at ice skating. But I agreed. After a couple minutes of falling I asked if Joseph would hold my hand, "the friend way" I told him. He promptly agreed and grabbed my hand. I felt this shock that went from my hand down to my feet. I didn't want to let go.
Weekends past and I still was determined to keep our friendship. So I set him up on a date with my best friend. We had such a fun time. My friend and I went home after. That night we were talking and she told me, "you know what? I think you and Joseph are going to get married." "What?" I thought. I just set her on the date. Not me! Where was this coming from? She began to tell me that she noticed the way we would look at each other. She couldn't explain it, but she just knew I would marry him. And you know what's crazy? The thought came into my mind, "she's right".
But then the thought passed and I never thought of it again.
After spending many weekends together it became apparent that we both really liked each other and we started to date. It took a lot for us to finally start dating. It's always hard trying to decided if you should date a best friend or not. There is always a chance of loosing that friendship. We took the chance.
I hadn't ever loved anyone so much. I felt like I could be myself. He was so sweet to me and treated me like the most important person in the world. It wasn't too hard dating long distance as I would drive home every weekend and the summer soon came. Joseph was called to the Denver Colorado mission for our church and I knew I would soon have to say goodbye. We wouldn't be able to call or text each other. Just email and letters. He told me that I should date other people while he was gone. 2 years is a long time. He wanted me to be happy.
I tried dating. I didn't like it. It was awkward and I just felt like no one was anything like him. I prayed to know what the Lord wanted me to do in my life. Many of my friends were leaving on a mission and something kept pushing me to go. I prayed to know if I should go and I didn't get an answer. After many nights of prayer I wrote down all the reasons I was scared to go. The list turned out to just 3 things. So I prayed again and told the Lord that if he helped me to feel comforted in those three things I would serve a mission and I would not ever turn back from that decision. That sunday all three of those things were talked about. That night I broke down in tears as I realized that I was not scared anymore. I knew that was my answer from God.
I was called to the Melbourne Australia mission. It was the best 18 months of my life. Ill leave that for another blog post.
Joseph and I got home within 2 weeks of each other. I was scared to see him again. What if things were different? What if I changed too much? What if he doesn't like me anymore? I was so nervous to get off that plane. But the second I saw him. I knew. I knew that I would marry him. There was no doubt anymore.