Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Secret Society

I remember them saying something about a support group meeting.
I remember telling them, yes, but I have a baby. I don't think it would be for me...

Two months later I found myself sitting in a room full of strangers. I glanced around and I couldn't believe the number of people in the room. They were mostly women but there were some men. Everyone looked uncomfortable. Eyes avoided one another and the room was silent.

A nurse started off the meeting and encouraged others to share their story, explain what (or rather who) brought them to this meeting. I remember as the parents shared their stories that I had a burning desire to talk. What if they didn't get to me? What if I couldn't share his story?

I heard horror story after horror story of people who had broken hearts from children who took a piece of them when they left. Lost children, some in early pregnancy, and some who lived for months. I felt a common bond with these people. I felt one of them. I felt I belonged.

As I began to look around the room I noticed that these people all looked so different. They came in all ages, shapes and sizes. Some had a house full of children, some had none. Some were married, some were not. Some got pregnant very easily, others had struggled for years. And yet we were all here. All together. All suffering from the same unspoken sorrow.

I remember thinking that I was suddenly a member of a secret society. Something that no one ever talked about. This was a society I never knew existed until I became a member. This was a group I didn't want to grow in numbers, and yet I was so glad not to be alone. I lost my baby and suddenly people came out of the woodwork to share their stories with me and somehow, before I had an angel, I was naive that any of them had suffered a broken heart. These people now understood me. They got 'it'.

Going places I began to wonder... "Is she a member?" "Is she?" Everywhere I looked I saw people I didn't know and I became curious to know their stories. To know if we were connected in some unspoken way. I remember seeing a woman who was angered by another driver and I thought, "Wow- I wonder if she's lost someone recently." Suddenly my patience began to change. I had more of it. Everyone became a victim. Everyone could have been me. Everyone could be hurting and trying so desperately to get through just one more day, one more hour, one more minute.

I wished that members of the secret society wore some kind of symbol. I wished that I could identify them and talk to them for I knew with them I would not worry about what they might think of me. I knew they wouldn't judge me for still being sad for losing my son, for still grieving, for still crying.

I wish I had a symbol that others would see and know- This is me! This is who I am! I am a mom to an angel- a proud mom. I may cry, but I'm glad you asked. Ask me. I want to talk about him! I want to remember. Ask me!

4 comments:

  1. You know I am not a member of your secret society. But, I have other friends who are, too many. You are an awesome woman with an incredible gift. Keep writing... they need you. I KNOW your thoughts will help them. You are doing a great thing by telling your story and Andrew's story and E's story. This is an awesome blog. I love you, care about you and I will ask you!

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  2. I love the title, I actually started laughing when I read "Secret Society", I guess thats what we are.

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  3. perfect, you know just the words to say :)
    thanks!

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  4. Gosh, I wish I had a symbol that would let everyone know.

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