[a goodbye three years old]

2:07 PM

We sat in the back of my Nissan Altima in silence. We had just exchanged gifts, little things so that we could hold on to each other. We recorded a video and cried all the way through it, like a couple of babies. (I had no idea I would watch those last few videos hundreds of times in the next few years)

Some of you will read this story and think I was a crazy, dramatic, unaware, little kid. And in so many ways, I was. But in so many other ways, I wasn't. I knew what I could potentially lose. I knew what time and distance and space could do to a little, teenage love like ours.

So we sat in the back of the car reminiscing and making plans and dreaming. When it was time for me to drive Randy back to his house, we looked over the ledge at our little spot in Kaysville and tried to smile.

We drove back in mostly silence, letting the sequence of our many songs fill the car.

I went inside Randy's house for a few minutes to say hello to his family. He wrote his email and mailing address on a piece of paper (that I would have memorized in a few weeks).

I walked out to my car for our real, final goodbye. I climbed in the front seat and had the strangest mix of pride, and extreme heartbreak.

Just down the street from Randy's house there was a stop sign. I stopped at it, and was crying too hard to continue driving. I just waited for a minute, and looked up just in time to see Randy sprinting down the street towards my car. I rolled down the window for one more "I love you" and kiss, and that was it. I drove home to Provo and cried the whole way. I would pass places, our places, and break down all over again.

The next day I got a farewell text, and that was it.

Randy entered the MTC on January 9th, 2013. And it changed both of our lives forever.

I'm so thankful for Randy's mission, for our letters, and for everything that has happened because of it.

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