nonsensical text

Monday, October 16, 2006

fried matzah

Again with the bread under my pillow. For more about Sleeping with Bread go here.

Belonging is sometimes so integral to our sense of self. Ironic, that. I mean, if you really stop to consider it, why do we tend to get a clearer understanding of selfness when we are around others – especially others who care for us? Is it perhaps in those times that we get a glimpse of how who we are fits into the scheme of things, due to the reflected oneness that comes from the blending of us and them? I don’t know for sure. I do know that belonging is important, even for an introvert. Everyone needs a safe place to let down their guard without feeling vulnerable. Granted, God is the safest harbor, the only true source of unconditional love, but He created us as social beings.

Ironically, the time during the past week that I felt the greatest sense of belonging was when I couldn’t join in with a group of friends. Several women who are traveling this road of stillbirth and infant loss with me, women I have come to love, met in Vegas over the weekend. The night before they left, we all got together and chatted. While you would think that listening to them iron out last minute details and make plans for the upcoming days – days I would not be able to hear about until after the fact – would make me feel excluded and alone, the opposite was true. I felt, ever so strongly, that I was indeed a part of their unity. I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I would be there with them even though I couldn’t send my physical body. It felt as good as soup on a cold day – and you know how I feel about my soup!

It is only fitting, then, that my time of least belonging occurred when I was around others. Saturday, after returning to the football field and undergoing all of the mouthpiece issues, I stood alone about ten feet behind the row of spectators. I couldn’t stand still, but I couldn’t walk far. I felt a need to be connected in some way to what was going on in the field, but I was alone among many. My children and husband were far away with the exception, of course, of the one standing on the sidelines. No one was there who really KNOWS me. The far-flung cornfields and maple trees met the enormity of sky. A crisp day was shrouded with the gentle warmth of the sun’s rays. People were banding together in united disgust with the officiating. I watched it all. I didn’t experience any of it.

Picture Window

Orange lines mark the sky
As she peers out from the rocking chair
Of her lace enshrouded living room.
Dim spots of parking lights
Caravan toward unknown territories -
Up the hill, around the corner,
Out of sight.
Two laughing voices,
Hand in hand,
A walk by sunset.
A child’s mirth
Rises above the semi-silence
Of a twilight.
She watches through a window,
Unable to touch life herself.

copyright 1996



  • Atypical,

    It is ironic, but so, so true what you say about our need to belong and how we often feel alone in a crowd. I'm glad though, you also had the opposite experience of feeling a sense of belonging when you were with your friends.

    I always love your SWB posts. They are always very insightful.

    By Blogger Mary-LUE, at 9:32 AM  

  • Mary,
    Thanks! I was glad to see you got a SWB post out even though you are away! :)

    By Blogger atypical, at 8:05 PM  

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