I love you 17!

After finding out I was pregnant with Preston it became a battle to stay healthy. After fighting infection after infection as well as the morning sickness I finally decided it was time to go to the hospital and get some help. They put me on three different types of antibiotics and I had to go in every day for an IV antibiotic treatment. I still couldn’t keep anything down and I felt like all life and energy was slowly draining from my body. I seriously started to worry that if I didn’t go home I might lose the baby.

I asked Joseph what he thought and he wouldn’t give me his opinion. All he would say is “its up to you I will support whatever you decide.” I was angry at him. This was a huge decision that affected him as well as me. If I went home it meant we would be separated for months if not years. It meant that he would miss so much. IF I stayed it could mean the loss of our baby. Or maybe everything would be ok. I didn’t want to make the decision alone but Joseph wouldn’t weigh in on it.

One day we were talking and Joseph took me in his arms and started dancing with me. “We cant dance without music,” I laughed.

So he started to sing. “I love you one I love you two I love you three I love you four.”

Thinking to one up him I interrupted with “I love you infinity!”

“Ok if you don’t want to hear the rest of the song “he told me.

“No finish” I begged. So he kept going until he reached I love you 17. I was confused. “Why 17?”

“Because thats the day we will go to the temple to be sealed” he told me s”o to us that number represents eternity.”

He was right, a few weeks later we were sealed on Sept. 17. Ever since then 17 is a special number to our family that represents an eternal love.

A few days after the sealing I knew what had to be done. I had to return home. Not just for the health of our baby but to start preparing a place for us back in America. I was afraid to tell Joseph. I wasn’t sure how he would react. When I told him he sighed and said “I’m so glad. Ive known for awhile that that was what you needed to do.”

“Why didn’t you tell me then!” I shouted. So frustrated at finally hearing his opinion after agonizing over making the decision on my own.

“Because, I didn’t want you to ever feel like I chased you away or didn’t want you here. IF you left I needed you to know it was because it was whats best not that I didn’t want you.”

His thoughtfulness and understanding took me by surprise. He was right I needed to come to this decision on my own and know that it was necessary. When he dropped me off at the airport he left me with two letters. “The first you can read on the plane he told me the other wait until you are home in your parents house to read.”

Leaving him was so hard. And would have been harder still if I had known he was standing right outside the window watching me until he couldn’t see me anymore with tears streaming down his face.

I sat on the airplane feeling dazed and alone but peaceful about the decision to go. Finally after we got in the air I opened his letter and read it. It held words of comfort and love and promises that he would follow as soon as possible. He told me to take good care of our baby and to prepare a home for us.  The tears flowed freely and I didn’t even care what the long haired tattooed man sitting next to me might have thought of me.

Its interesting that the following months could have been incredibly difficult for me but they really weren’t. I missed Joseph. But the loneliness I felt without him was nothing to the hopelessness I had experienced before. He was there, I knew his face and his name, I knew he loved me, I carried our baby in my womb and I felt more whole and complete than I had ever dared to hope.

2013 ended with me living in a little apartment in Spanish Fork, working at Cedar Fort and waiting for my husband to join us.

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