"Life isn't about surviving the storm...it is about learning to dance in the rain." Anonymous

Friday, February 24, 2012

Sorority Life

I have read in several places and have even used the phrase myself once or twice that by going through the loss of a baby, you join a sorority that you never wanted to join.  How true!  For some reason, today this makes me think of my college sorority...keep reading, I promise this will be relevant to the babyloss community.  First of all, let me say that I LOVED my sorority.  I was a Phi Mu and loved every minute of it.  I loved the friends, the social aspect, the songs, Rush Week, etc, etc.

I remember vividly the day I got my bid.  At my college, we had a "sorority hill" and on Bid Day, everyone ran up the hill to their respective new sorority houses.  It was there that your big sister for the day put your jersey on you and you became part of the whole excitement that is sorority life. 

My sorority was good for me...I fought to keep up my grades so I could go to all the social things like formals and date nights.  I made so many friends, most of whom are still close to me 22 years later.  Most of bridesmaids were sorority sisters. 

So, today I have been thinking about this sorority of sorts which I am now a part of....one that I didn't get a jersey for, one that doesn't offer any excitement, one for which I didn't get a cute pink invitation inviting me to join.  In fact, I didn't get any notice at all that I was about to become a member.  The only prerequisite to my becoming a sister in this group is the loss of my precious, precious baby. 

Oh my goodness...how I would gladly give up my membership and have my baby back.  But that is not possible, is it?  My loss is a part of my life, just as the loss of each member's baby is a part of their lives.  And, wow, how fast you become "initiated" into the group.  There is no warning, no butterflies in your stomach as you wonder if you will be accepted.  Your initiation comes in the form of a profound loss, a loss that will never leave you.

I want to say that as much as I resisted being a part of this group....I couldn't believe for the longest time that being the mother of a stillborn daughter was my fate.... I am so grateful for this group, this sorority of women (and men) who are alot like me.  You know, if you are reading this blog and are a member of this group yourself, that there is comfort and solace in knowing that you are not alone.  That there are others out there that know your pain on some level.  Our stories may each be different and unique and the way we grieve may not be exactly the same, but our pain is the same and it is real. 

What I have learned since the day I was initiated into this sorority is that I cherish the people I know who are members....they ground me and provide me with a support and understanding that I can't get anywhere else.  So, I guess I can say that while I do not feel "lucky" to be a member, I am grateful.  Grateful for the chance to hear the stories of loss that my friends share with me, grateful to be a part of someone's journey through the loss of their baby, grateful that when I am down, I have someone or some people to talk to. 

So, I guess here is to sorority life....not exactly the Greek experience I was hoping for, but one that is a part of me forever.