We are attending a small group for parents of young children. A great group of couples, all with children 7 and under. As I've been getting to know this group better, I've been thinking about stories.
I don't think that I can ever consider myself truly comfortable (or safe) in a group until they know about Kenna. Two of the members of our group (from different families) are in the field of genetics. In the middle of a discussion on facing trials when we can't answer the "why" question, one of the researchers made a compassionate but casual comment regarding babies dying of Trisomy 18.
It made sense in context and was completely non offensive, but it was so casual it stung.
Maybe he would have made the comment if had known about Kenna.
But then again, maybe he wouldn't have.
For the Feast of All Saints this week, I submitted Kenna's name to be included in the prayers, yet somehow she was overlooked.
It upsets me more than it probably should.
It is so strange to spend so much of our time with people who don't know about this 7th member of our family. How do I tell them? How do I share her story?
The issue isn't just Kenna.
Just over 6 months ago we had a major house fire. We have only replaced roughly half of our personal belongings and are still in the process of rebuilding. Even more than the physical replacement of belongings, I think we are just coming to terms with the emotional toll that this experience has had on us. There is healing left to do.
But again, no one knows.
When and how can I share?
I feel like without knowing about these two experiences, a person cannot truly know me. They have defined (and refined) me.
Yet, at the same time it feels presumptuous, attention seeking, and awkward to share them.
I know, of course, that am not the only one with a story.
I don't know when the time will come, but I am guessing that one day I will suddenly have an opening. A moment when it is time to share.
I don't know what my words will be, but I have a story to tell.