The title for this post comes from an old mission field chestnut; a talk given by Spencer W. Kimball, warning missionaries against falling in love in the mission field. You can read the text of it here — apparently its validity is in dispute. I had little trouble keeping my heart locked during my mission in France; no one really ever tried to bust in, frankly. I can’t say that my companions were so lucky however, with sometimes hilarious, sometimes tragic results (mostly hilarious).
A recent comment at the unmentionable blog relating a Dear John incident has inspired me to blog about my own Dear John experiences, and to solicit yours, Dear Reader. First, a couple of gems from the Book of Steve: I’d dated Tracy a few times before going into the MTC, she was a fine, strapping lass from Calgary. As things are wont to do, my image of Tracy became more lustrous the longer I was in the MTC, and by the time I was in France, Tracy was quite the catch. I wrote to lovely Tracy, asking for a small picture of her, perhaps to adorn my dumpy apartment in Sartrouville. Tracy was all too happy to comply, and in a few weeks I had my picture — her engagement photo. Thanks, Tracy *rrrrrip*.
Another from the many, many disappointments: I’d dated Aisha during freshman year in Deseret Towers, and I thought we had a bright and make-out rich future ahead of us. We wrote each other frequently, sharing thoughts, feelings, and experiences. *sigh*. About 8 months into the mission, the letters stopped — no explanation, no notes. I was crushed. Was she all right? Had the lamanites taken over her city, Pahoran-style? A few months later, the letters started again. However, amongst the thoughts and feelings being shared were thoughts and feelings about some other guy. Trevor? Mark? Who cares. Thanks for sharing, Aisha *burns letters furiously*.
These are tame experiences, compared to some of the absolute heart-crushers I’ve witnessed with my companions. I’ve seen elders get completely immobilized for days, sobbing uncontrollably. Remember this, O ye who are about to embark on missions — lock your hearts, dear friends. Lock your hearts.