Have you ever been to a playground, play date, daycare, really any place where there is a gathering of children and moms, where there is that ONE mom on the far bench all alone?
The mom that is greeted with hushed whispers and awkward small talk about the weather.
The mom that gets that look. You know the one. The look where the eyebrows go up slightly, the head tilts at an acute angle, one side of their mouth goes up in a forced smile while the other side slightly draws in and into the cheek. Sometimes it is followed by the chin and head going out slightly with maybe a slight pat on the leg or arm.
That look. The look of utter pity. The ‘I have no idea what to say to you, so instead I will give you the same look I give a puppy along the side of the road,’ look.
This happens a lot more than I realized. Even 2 years out and a rainbow ago. I meet new people and I get “The question.”
Is this your first?
I reply with the standard answer. “First Living.”
I leave it opened ended. That way they can decide if they want to pursue what that means, or if they want to ignore it. I leave the ball in their court.
If they pursue, I tell. I get mixed reactions but the majority of the time after, I get the look. Sometimes, I get it every time they see me thereafter.
But that’s ok. I’m not ashamed of my daughters or of who they were or how long they lived. They lived beautiful lives devoid of hate, violence, greed, envy, and sin. They knew nothing but immense love.
So, next group you go to, start up a conversation with ‘That mom.’ Maybe she will share her story with you. You might learn something beautiful. We all have stories.
I’m that mom.