I have been thinking about Cora a lot the last few days. It's probably because while we were at the zoo, one of the families that we sort of "grouped" with had a daughter named Cora. This girl was maybe 6.
The first time her mother called her name it surprised me. After a couple times, though, I felt the overwhelming urge to tell this woman to shut up. I didn't. What I DID do, though, it tell Matt and Kim that we needed to get away from that family, whether it was speeding up/skipping an exibit or waiting for them to go ahead. I was trying really hard not to let myself wonder what that woman did to be able to keep her Cora. I was trying really hard not to let myself think about NOT getting to yell at a little redheaded girl to stay close, and to wait for us to get to the gorillas too.
I contented myself with snidely thinking "Yeah, well, my Cora would have been cuter." She would have been too, because Erin was cuter.
So the last few days I've been thinking about all the things the Spirit has whispered to me over the last almost-3 years, about me, about Cora and about my relationship to her. I was in the shower this morning, thinking about that fateful morning, when she didn't move in the shower and I collapsed into tears, knowing but not allowing myself to believe it. I was near tears again, when a conversation I had with Adrienne popped into my head. We had this conversation shortly after Erin was born...maybe around the time Marcus was born.
She asked me "But, if Cora had stayed, do you think you'd have Erin?"
And I said "Maybe not now, but I think I would have gotten her eventually." And like lightning it hit me: I may not have Cora now, but I'll get her eventually.
So Adrienne is officially one of my Penguins. She has been for a long time, but she only recently got the name.
The name comes from the Pregnancy Loss support forum I'm on. I was having a private message conversation with one of the girls on there, and she mentioned that someone she recently talked to about the forum thought it was a ridiculous idea. She said that the person thought that a bunch of women who had all been through miscarriage trying to support each other would be like a bunch of blind people trying to lead each other to water.
There are many problems with that metaphor. First off, is the idea that grief is always so all-encompassing that you can't break out of it long enough to say something nice to someone else. Second, that someone who HASN'T been through the experience would have any idea where the "water" is. And lastly, the idea that you ever completely get over your grief. The idea that there is "water" to go to. It gets better, but it never goes away, and it leaves you forever changed. You will never be "all better" because you will always have a hole in your heart where a child is supposed to be.
So in thinking about what we actually are, we Angel Mommies who post on the forum, or leave comments on one-another's blogs, an image came to my mind. It was a scene from "March of the Penguins." It was during the middle of the Antarctic winter, and the penguins were huddled together against the wind and bitter cold. The most amazing part, is that they take turns sheltering each other from the wind. Eventually, the penguins on the outside of the huddle move to the middle, and the ones from the middle move out to shelter those who are the coldest.
So, I'd like to thank all my penguins. I know so many wonderful women, who are standing in the same winter, against the same bitter wind as me. They shelter me when I am coldest, and allow me the honor of sheltering them when they need it.