Tearful Suit

It wasn’t about the superficiality of looking fancy, this urgency for a white suit.

It was that it is Alex’s suit, and he needs it for his big day.

It’s about temple covenants, getting adopted, and being sealed in the temple.

It’s about the rite of passage of choosing to be baptized, and pleading for a fresh start.

It’s about a hilarious little boy who came to us without any words when he was four years old and had long red curls all the way down his back, a little boy who spent his first Sunday in church crawling under the pews barking like a dog.

It’s about a little boy that Nicki Murnan had to wrestle all the way through the primary program that happened only weeks after his arrival, a little boy she had to catch before he jumped off the stage because he was so excited and over-stimulated.

It’s about a little boy who stood up and clapped and shouted BRAVO! when Nathan finished playing violin in church the first time after Alex arrived.

It’s about a little boy who tries so hard to be good, is very honest about when he isn’t, and who is so active and strong that he warns places visit that “I am the bull for your china shop! What do you got here to show me?!”

It’s about a little boy who loves being a brother, who wants to make his Papa proud, who wants to make his Mama smile.

It’s about a little boy who is one of the funniest creatures I have ever met.

It’s about Alex, growing up, turning eight.

It’s about Alex, who could have been the spoiled only son, but repeatedly asked for siblings in his prayers until he felt we had all been gathered.

And so when we moved, I left out his white suit specifically so it wouldn’t get lost.

But we had a lot of helpers, and someone threw a whole set aside stack into a box which got thrown on the truck which got put who knows where, and just like that, it was gone.

I had Mary’s dress, but she had just gotten baptized, and we won’t need her dress again for four years, until Anber is ready to get baptized.

But this suit?  The one for Alex this week, and for Kirk in January?

It was gone.

I have looked for it for four months.

So finally, Barrett and I got down on our knees and explained it all to Heavenly Father, who already knew everything but likes to hear from us from time to time.

And Barrett, in his purity and innocence, prayed a heartfelt prayer asking for help.

We lost the white suit, Father.  It’s so special.  It’s our temple suit.  Alex wants to make covenants.  The suit is not important, we know.  But it is special, so please?  Can you help us find it?

And as we said “Amen”, and I lifted my eyes from our prayer, still on my knees, I saw it.

I saw it, right there, right in front of me.

It was on a shelf, safely tucked away, so that it would not be lost.

Of course it was.

I squeezed Barrett and told him he was my hero, and we had another prayer right away to thank Heavenly Father.

And as we did, I began to cry.

I began to cry for all we have been through since moving just to get them in the schools they needed for language, for how hard we each try every day just to do this family thing well, for knowing there was no backup plan – neither time nor budget for buying an alternative suit.

I cried for Kyrie being well enough for three whole days in a row, so well that somebody’s outfit was the crisis rather than whether she was alive or not.

I cried for little Barrett, who just wants to be loved, but who came as part of a pair, and lost in the shuffle because he was okay while we had the cerebral palsy learning curve with Kirk, and okay while we were in crisis with the baby, and okay while we moved to get them all into the right schools for their special needs, but then not okay anymore when life settled down and it was his turn for us to pay attention to him.

I cried for the whiteness of Alex’s temple clothes, and for all that the temple means to us, and for children who know why a white suit is special.

I cried for the miracle of a white suit being found when it was impossible to find.

I cried for an impossible family made possible, for all the days and evenings and pre-dawn hours I prayed on my knees in tears for moments just like these that now exhaust me so much.

I cried for my children, and for the overwhelming love I feel for them, for my husband who is so faithful and kind to me, and for myself, who is simply a daughter of a Heavenly Father who knows us and loves us and hears our prayers.

I cried and I cried and I cried.


About Emily

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since 2009. I serve as a Chaplain, and work as a counselor. I got bilateral cochlear implants in 2010, but will always love sign language. I choose books over television, and organics over processed. Nothing is as close to flying as ballroom dancing - except maybe running, when in the solo mood. I would rather be outside than anywhere else, especially at the river riding my bike or kayaking. PhD in Marriage and Family Therapy, and currently doing a post-doc in Jewish Studies and an MDiv in Pastoral Counseling. The best thing about Emily World is that it's always an adventure, even if (not so) grammatically precise. The only thing better than writing is being married to a writer. Nathan Christensen and I were married in the Oklahoma City temple on 13 October 2012, and have since fostered more than eighty-five children. We have adopted the six who stayed, and are totally and completely and helplessly in love with our family. Nathan writes musical theater, including "Broadcast" (a musical history of the radio) and an adaption of Lois Lowry's "The Giver". He served his mission in South Korea, has taught song-writing in New York City public schools, and worked as a theater critic for a Tucson newspaper. This is not an official Web site of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


Tearful Suit — 1 Comment

  1. The cleanse of soul through the tears of mortal eyes that see and sobs heard through ears that hear are miracles and precious memories.