This blog has always served as a kind of venting place for me - Good or bad, if I'm feeling it, chances are, you know about it. I've written too many times to count about my worries, my health issues, my family and how they are making my brain hurt (see tag "Making Me Crazy") or how they are making me smile (check out "Love" or anything tagged nephew or niece). I've tried to tell the stories of my life, as honestly as I know how - positive, negative, or somewhere in between. It's not always the easy thing to do, but I feel like that's the kind of writing I want/need to do: To share my experiences with all of you, to know that I'm extending my own community, just by living my life and talking about it.
But, like I said: it's not always easy to do, and I am now going to type a sentence it had never occurred to me it would be necessary to type... This past week, our family suffered a tragic loss: my cousin's baby was born still, three days past her due date. I ordinarily would have no compunction about talking about it here (the myriad of posts about the loss of my Nana should prove that), but every time I've sat down to do just that, I come back to this single fact: I don't feel like it is my story to tell.
It's effected me, yes: it's effected our whole family: It is a terrible and shocking sadness. And yet, my story is about how I had to sit, helpless, and listen to my uncle rant and rave about fairness and unfairness and if our family could be expected to bear anything else. My story is about how that little white box was the single saddest thing I have ever seen in my life and how I (who doesn't really believe in god) found myself praying for everyone in the church to keep standing, just so I wouldn't have a view of it anymore. My story is about how incongruous it seemed to be watching my other cousin's two year old twins at the hospital, making them giggle and reading them stories, knowing that a hallway away their entire family - my family - was being swamped with pain.
In this instance, my story is basically that I am unable to help with their story - that, aside from letting them know I love them - I can think of nothing to do to help the couple whose story is that they just buried their first daughter before she took her first breath; to help the grandparents and aunt whose story is that they never got to dote on the first baby girl for their side of the family; to help any of us because I can't answer the questions of why something this horrible could happen, why the word stillborn is still in our vocabulary in the year 2010, why nobody ever told us that being a grown up was going to this unbearably painful.
And yet: I couldn't say nothing here - I couldn't just let it pass by unremarked. I've tried to write about sixteen other posts since then as well, and each of them falls apart in my exhausted brain. So do blog comments, and Facebook status updates: I can think of nothing, really, besides: "I am sad." "If I am this sad, I do not understand how my cousins are breathing." "Did this last week really happen? Why isn't there some undo button, because last Friday is looking spectacular, comparatively?" "I wish I could help you. Please talk to me." or "Please don't talk to me, because I don't know what to say, but know that I love you. A lot."
And not mentioning it, well it seemed like lying: I am going to try to write other things this week, to post a best shot tomorrow, if I can, or point you to something awesome or funny if I should happen to be able to concentrate long enough to read it. I'm going, in short, to try to get back to the things I enjoy, and see if I can't try to enjoy them again. But it's not going to be simple, and I'm going to be dealing with this grief for quite a while. If I didn't mention it - as easy as that seems, to just not say anything, to let all of you continue to live in a world where stillborn is just a word from the ancient past - it would also feel dishonest of me and disrespectful to the stories of the people I love. I wouldn't feel like I could share my truth, my life, and if I can't do that, what's the point of this whole blog thing anyways?
So I'm going to write when I can, and I'm going to try to crawl out of the melancholy that has - rightfully so - enveloped us here this past week. And I might need your help, so I'm thanking you ahead of time for listening.
*Since I have been trying to weed through my Google Reader, attempting to read only things that might cheer me up, I've been wishing that there was some sort of warning system for posts that start out good, and then take a dramatically sad turn. So I could skip them for now, come back to them when everything in the world - including a damn LOLCat - isn't making me cry. So, I figured I'd better warn y'all, just in case.