I don't know your name and I can't find a way to reach you other than posting again, so I hope you are able to read this.
In your comment to me you asked if I wanted to go on the mission and if I could just say no. The short answer is yes, I want to go, and yes I could say no, but I never would do that, even if I weren't happy to be going.
Usually married couples choose to go on a mission (or not) and choose the time they want to serve. They then fill out medical and dental forms to show they are capable of serving without serious medical issues, are interviewed by their church leaders and then wait for our prophet (leader of our church) to send a letter back telling them where they will go. In these instances, couples serve anywhere between 1 and 2 years at their own expense.
My husband and I have always planned on going on a mission, but our plan was to leave in a few years. In our case, we did not turn in papers requesting a mission call, but instead were asked by our church leaders to go and serve for three years.
Since we believe that our prophet speaks for God, we also then believe that it is God's will that we go. We could, of course, say no, but then we would be going against God's will for us, and we do not want to do that.
Now that said, I will admit that I didn't readily embrace this assignment. My mother is in poor health, and my children are having babies. The thought of leaving them all for three years was heart wrenching to say the least. But I am also getting very excited. We could go to any of 30 missions in 12 different Spanish speaking countries. And at a time when my baby is graduating from high school and leaving home, I will help my husband care for around 400 young men and women (over the course of the three years) who are away from their homes serving as missionaries as well. We will also get to learn a new culture and make new friends.
I have always loved traveling and new adventures and this is like the ultimate adventure trip. :-) So I know I will cry a lot when we leave Arizona, but I am confident that I will cry just as much or more, when we have to leave our area of service and come back.
Because I am sure the mission will bring great . . . joy to our journey.