The pain is part of me

Not to sound melodramatic, or like I should write 90’s goth songs, but, yeah, this pain is now a part of me. Like shoving an octagon into a small, square box. It bulges at the sides. It’s a silent pendant. It’s a presence lurking about shoulder-level. Some days, it’s more omnipresent than others.

The reality of this shadow hit me over the week while I was vacationing in Cuba with my mom (a sweet gift she gave me to get away from my dreary life). I didn’t tell a soul that that’s why I was on holiday. I didn’t do anything more than participate in inane chit chat with the strangers at the resort. I’m sure everyone had their reasons for needing a break.

The pain is never going to go away. I’m simply living with it – though there is nothing simple about it. Being away from home really let it sink it. It’s part of my personality. It’s part of my face when I smile and laugh. I am the sad clown. I’m in the background, front and centre. I don’t need to talk. I don’t need to participate. I also don’t need to announce my passenger or cease to experience and live life because of it. It’s just always there. I don’t need to wear it as a badge and centre a room around my pain. No. It’s just part of who I am. I don’t need to draw attention to it any more than I need to discuss my eye colour, or the clothes I wear. But if you look closely, the pain is my most prominent feature.

Two months ago

Two months ago, I gave birth. Part of me will always be in that delivery room on the fourth floor of Sainte Justine Hospital, across from the nursing station, in one of the newly renovated rooms for mothers like me. A picture of a kite blowing in the breeze posted to the door lets nurses and staff know that the woman inside is experiencing one of life’s greatest tragedies.

Two months later, and only because plans for tonight were put in motion in early spring, I’m going to see Leonard Cohen at the Bell Centre. He is sometimes called the High Priest of Pain, so I will be in good company.

Tomorrow, I take to the skies on a weeklong trip with my mom for some rest and recuperation with sand, beach, booze and sun. And I get to bring Henry with me thanks to my pretty little locket :-).

Two months later, life is nearly unrecognizable, but I’m surrounded by the same people, sitting on the same furniture, wearing the same glasses, but with a gigantic Henry-shaped hole in my heart, and an empty womb. I wonder what my beautiful son would have looked like had he lived to seven months in utero?