Thursday, January 5, 2012

A Special Sealing in Chicago

{Photos courtesy of the photographer, my SIL Sarah!}

The reason for our trip to Wisconsin was to drive with Steve and Tamara to Chicago (just 2 hours away) to celebrate the sealing of Ben's sister, Betsy, with his side of the family.

To be completely honest (this is me, after all), I was sort of apprehensive about this trip.  I am beyond happy for Betsy (and her now-husband, Brad), but we had not originally planned to be present at their sealing. It was scheduled for December 28, and Eleanor was due to be born on December 15.  We expected her to be late (not 3 months early!), and I said early on that I knew I wouldn't want to fly across the country or drive with an infant so soon after having a baby, especially in flu season.  We were happy for Betsy, and really sad to expect to miss her special day.

One blessing from El's early appearance was that we were, suddenly, available to travel for Betsy's sealing.  We did really wanted to be there, but I was concerned that the dissolving of our original expectations would cast a shadow over our trip.  I was worried during the days leading up to the sealing that it would remind me of our change in plans, but I am so happy to report that there was nothing but love and joy on that amazing morning! 

In fact, I was {literally} sobbing from joy during the entire ceremony! Ben and I planned our sealing around Betsy coming home from her LDS mission to Temple Square in April, 2010.  It was important to us to have her there-- "waiting for Betsy" was sort of the joke around our whole engagement and marriage planning, in fact! She flew directly into Columbia and we were sealed the next day.  I was worried that we were raining on her Coming Home parade (everyone deserves their own special moment after such a huge accomplishment), but Betsy handled it so well and told us afterward, "It meant so much to me to see my whole family together in the temple just after coming home from serving the Lord. Thank you."

Well, Betsy, it meant so much to me to witness the sealing of a couple in love and to hear and remember the marriage covenants in the most spiritual place on Earth so soon after losing our daughter! Thank you!

I can not express how beautiful the spirit was, and how comforting.  I was reminded so strongly of the love Ben and I share, and how incredibly grateful I am that we made the decision to be sealed for time and all eternity before we had children (though a family can still be sealed together forever after a death, of course).  You can't plan the future- there was no way for us to know we wouldn't live with our angel. But Heavenly Father knew, and, years ago, restored the Priesthood- the power of God- to the Earth so that families like ours would have the opportunity to be together in the eternities after the devastation of this Earthly life.

It was a powerful message.

After the ceremony we were invited to congratulate the bride and groom.  I gave Brad a hug and told him what a wonderful family he married into, but couldn't say a word to Betsy.  My face was completely tear-stained (I had, at least, tried to sob quietly in the back so we didn't disturb the rest of the family), and I could just hold her tightly and try not to mess up her veil. Betsy, I hope you understand the gratitude I was trying to convey in that moment!

Many happy memories are yet to come to this special couple!


  1. Sealings are so wonderful! Even reading about them brings a Spirit so I love reading this during my lunch hour! What a wonderful blessing to look forward to!

  2. It sounds like such a wonderful trip :) what a blessing the gospel is in our lives

  3. Thanks for sharing such tender feelings about the trip. I am so glad you guys came. What a great time we all had!


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