I recently had the sacred honor of escorting a new temple patron: my very own daughter, the only birth-daughter I will ever share the holy temple with. After a lifetime of loving the gospel, she took to it like a fish to water: completely at home amid scripture and symbolism, requiring a minimum of hand-holding.
As an eighteen-year-old, raised in a less-active family, I needed far more support during my first visit to the temple. The sister who acted as my escort knew this and tenderly draped my arm through hers.
She exuded loving confidence throughout, both in me and in the proceedings, so that I relaxed into her testimony, resting my head on her faithful shoulder at every opportunity.
Two hours later, I was sealed for time and all eternity to her son.
When Hannah and I went to the temple, she was quite independent. The Child-Bride-Me, on the other hand, mimicked my escort like a younger sibling with an admired elder. My poor mother-in-law was watched like a hawk and peppered with “why” and “what does that mean” and “how do I…’s“‘ until she gave me a final instruction which I swore (to myself) to never forget:
She watched me while I followed through. Satisfied I had mastered this important rite, she took my hand and led me to the chapel.
Hundreds of temple visits later, she and I found ourselves together in the locker room of the Orlando, Florida Temple, where she was now serving with my Temple President father-in-law as the Temple Matron.
We cheerfully chatted in whispers while I changed and hung my clothes. With everything in the locker, I twisted the tiny key and raised my dress to expose the top of my knee-high stocking. Then — as I popped open the safety pin attached to the key — and while bending over to carefully complete the procedure I had followed for twenty-plus years — she said the most astounding thing:
Ahhhh…you told me to?
(Shaking of the head.) “That’s the silliest thing I ever heard of.” **********************
I must admit, it was awfully fun being Sage-for-a-Day with Hannah; so fun, that as an escort, I couldn’t resist passing on my own personal profundities:
Only wash whites with whites.
Clip the hem of your dress to a skirt hanger when you store it in a hanging bag.
Of course, since the temple is all about relationships, information, and forever, it seems perfectly appropriate for Hannah to cherish my advice like doctrine for the rest of her life.
Mona shares and teaches romance at Mona’s Musings with a Hint of Romance. She is the mother of four plus three and grandmother of two and the award-winning author or With Mine Own Hand: The Musical Account of Nephi. For a daily Hint of Romance (every wife needs one) go to Mona’s Musings on Facebook.
Photos from Dreamstime