After our first year of college Garren was called to serve a 2 year mission for our church. He was called to the London, England South mission. I asked him to write something about his experience: Serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints was a turning point in my life. Not only was I able to go to a new country and have the blessing of serving so many different people, I grew up and had gained a greater understand of what was important to me. As a missionary I learned that family and relationships are the single greatest thing we have in this life, and the gospel of Jesus Christ enhances those relationships to make them more complete. This was an amazing time in my life.
While Garren was on his mission I had quite a few adventures of my own. I spent the majority of 2009 in Westchester, New York. I was a nanny to three year old twins. I fell hard for these kids, the state of New York, and the amazing friends I was able to make. We traveled to places like Boston, and Washington DC and explored Manhattan. The kids taught me how to be patient and love freely despite learning and behavior disabilities. Then in May 2010 my two best friends and I traveled to Ghana to teach English, volunteer in a special education school, and live in an orphanage for a little over a month. That month was one of the longest but fastest (and hottest!) months of my life. I learned so much about the world outside my comfort zone and fell in love with these children and their culture. I day dream about going back all of the time.
Garren came home from his mission in August of 2010. There was a brief moment right before he came home that I let myself wonder what it would be like to date him but I quickly pushed it out of my mind since I knew how much he liked my best friend. The moment I saw him our friendship continued where it had left off. (We did write each other 4 or 5 times while he was on his mission.)