Thankfully, later that year we both tried out for our high school's clogging team, Cloggers West, and were both picked to join the sophomore team and the year after were selected to join the performing team. We spent a lot of time together practicing and performing throughout Utah and neighboring states. We both became close friends not just with each other but with all of the other members of the team. But by the end of our junior year Krista and I became best friends.
Now, texting didn't exist back in the 80s but we became what we know now as BFF (best friends forever). We would walk to class together, pool our meager funds together for lunch, clog dance together as much as possible and spend every moment we could with each other. On the weekends and during the summer I would ride my bike to her house, which was a 20 mile round trip, just to spend time with her. We were inseparable.
I remember one evening during our senior year, we were sitting at the top of 4th North in Lindon talking about our future together. We talked about getting married, having children, arguing about wanting girls or boys (as if we had a choice). And what we envisioned what life would be like for us. I distinctly remember the peace I felt while talking with her and knew that I was going to marry her.
We continued our conjoined lives after high school graduation. Krista started college that summer and I worked various jobs while waiting to go on a mission for my church. Being two of the youngest in our class we waited over a year and a half before I left for a mission to Japan. Before I left we talked about what Krista should do while I was gone. I had not yet told her I knew we were going to be married so I told her I was fine with her dating and we would see how things were when I returned.
While I was in Japan we faithfully wrote letters to each other every week. I knew what was going on in her life and she knew about mine. Krista did date several boys while I was gone and even had one of them propose to her telling her that I would return from my mission and want to marry a Japanese girl. Thankfully she said no.
When I returned from my two year mission Krista was waiting at the airport with my family ready to "see how things were". Needless to say, we already knew. I came home to carefully laid out wedding plans. We knew the date, the temple we were to be married in, where the reception would be and she even had her wedding dress ordered. All she needed was a fiance. I wasted no time and within two weeks from returning I proposed to her. At that point it was more of a formality than anything but it was important and we were officially engaged.
Then, on August 20th 1988 early in the morning we entered the Salt Lake City Temple together to not just be married for time but sealed for all eternity. There was a whirlwind of activity that morning as they had over 100 marriages to perform. But I never felt rushed or not given the attention this sacred moment deserved. I remember after dressing in white being led to the Celestial room with Krista's hand in mine. We were seated on a couch to wait until it was our turn. We didn't say much while sitting there, holding hands with her head on my shoulder, we just enjoyed feeling the total peace that was there. Then it was our turn, we were lead to the sealing room and knelt across the alter. The ordinance wasn't lengthy but with it and the authority it was performed by we were pronounced husband and wife. Thankfully not till death do us part but forever.
Little did I know back then how life would unfold. Together we experienced a lot. A lot of joy, a lot of pain, a lot of growing and a lot of learning to trust the Lord. Now I'm without her for a time. I don't know how long it will be and what is ahead, but I do know that she is patiently waiting for me, watching me and praying for me. I look forward to when this trial is over and I can once again hold her in my arms, for I know that it was on August 20th 1988 that we truly became inseparable.