Our Love Story: Part 7

PART 1  

Part 7

That weekend, we watched conference and spent time with J's family. His nieces and nephews were adorable, and his sister was sweet. It was a peaceful weekend away from the busy life on campus. Sunday morning, I was sprawled on my stomach, listening to a conference talk. J plopped next to me, caught my eye, and winked. I giggled. For once I didn't feel confused, just relaxed and peaceful. I was in a relationship with J, and we'd see where it would go. I looked up at J. He smiled and kissed the top of my head. We turned our attention to the television, listening to a talk about marriage. “Do you think maybe we could be headed towards that?” J whispered. “Marraige?” I asked, and he nodded. Suddenly, my heart was filled with happiness – I had to hold back the laughter. I wanted to marry this man. I knew what I truly wanted! I was going to burst - “I could be your WIFE!” I whispered, a little too loudly. “Shhhh!” J laughed, and kissed me sweetly.

The next week was busy, I had so much to do for my classes, and there was just a month until finals. J and I would meet in the library, and study. We spent all our free time together, to the point where my roomates always expected him to walk through the door behind me. He watched movies with us, ate ice cream with us, hung out with us. He was my best friend, but he was more than that too.

One night, we headed home from the library. J pulled me across the open walkways to a bench, tucked in the center of a small grove of pine trees. The november wind was bitter, and the trees provided some relief. I shivered, and J pulled me into a hug, rubbing my arms to warm me up. I snuggled my cold nose on the chest of his sweatshirt. J cupped my chin with his hand, and gently lifted my face to look at him. “I love you E.Marie.” My eyes widened. He waited for a response. I squeezed my eyes shut and took a leap into the relationship. Keeping my eyes closed I whispered “I love you.” J laughed, and I looked up at him in annoyance. “Let me show you what you just did,” He laughed, then closed his eyes, wrinkled his nose and said in a whimpy voice “I love you”. “That doesn't count,” he said, still laughing. “You have to keep your eyes open to make it count!” I was irritated. I was scared for some reason. I didn't know why, I'd said “I love you” to boys before. For some reason, this was different, it was real – the love was real, and to say that outloud scared me. I opened my eyes in an exagerated way, looked at him straight on, and said loudly, “I love you.” J grinned. “That was better.” He chuckled, then kissed me sweetly.

It was a chilly mid November day when we wandered Main Street in Rexburg. We peeked in the front window of a jewlers store. The display was covered with ornate yellow gold rings with emerald cut stones. I had never liked yellow gold, but white gold was a rare find, and platinum wasn't even heard of in a little country town. We wandered into the store, holding hands, and began to look around timidly. “What are the rings you like?” J asked. We looked through the display cases. “How about something like that?” J pointed to a large ring that seemed covered in clusters of diamonds. “Too gaudy,” I said. We kept browsing. Finally I saw a ring tucked away in the corner of one of the cases. It was white gold with a touch of yellow gold in the center, and had a small row of diamonds on each side, leading to the center. In the center was a diamond chanel set in yellow gold. “That one” I said. “I really like that one.” J looked at me, and grinned, his blue eyes sparkling. “Good to know.” He winked at me, and we continued on our walk around town.

Thanksgiving was a week away when crisis attacked my little dorm apartment. One of our roomates had been living with severe mental illness, and The truth came out, and the dorm mother and dean got involved. Our roomate was to be picked up by her parents at the end of the week, and checked into a mental health facility. She would not be returning to school. It was traumatic for my roomates and I. We were eighteen and ninteen years old, trying to be grown up and independent, but this situation caused major homesickness to wash over our appartment. Most of the girls spent hours on our phone, and our neighbors phones, finding comfort through talking to their parents. I found that I wasn't homesick for my parents, they were busy at home with my younger siblings. I spent my time with J, who talked me through my feelings and fears, and held me when I cried.

The end of the week came, and we were having a goodbye party for our roomate when one of my roomates pulled me away from J and whispered “There's a guy with a bunch of roses asking for you.” I had no idea who it could be, but I slipped away. Inside my appartment was the older brother of the missionary, holding a dozen roses. I cringed. I hadn't writen the missionary in over a month, and my previous letter had let him know that I was dating a guy kind of seriously. The brother awkwardly handed the flowers to me. “He asked me to give these to you. Today is his one-year mark until he gets home.” Just as awkwardly, I took the flowers. Right then, J walked in, looking for me. He looked from me to the brother, and me again. I introduced the two guys, and J quickly realized the relation between the guy in front of him, and the missionary. He grabbed my hand, and kissed my hair. “Whacha doing sweety?” He asked, not so innocently. The brother's eyes widened, and J smiled at him, wrapping his arms around my waist.

To Be Continued ...   PART 8 HERE

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