Safe and sound.
I hear the words echo in the air. They bounce off me at first, but shoot back only to sink in deep.
She's talking about another baby's happy birth, and I think about how the person saying those words never said a word to me about how my baby wasn't born safe and sound. Well, not in this world anyway.
I shut my eyes.
"Don't be like that." I hear a soft voice whisper.
I won't, I vow. I won't be like that. I promise I'll never let a baby's quiet birth shock me into silence. I'll never dress up gossip as concern or try to pass off silence as solemn courtesy. I'll never...
I pull at my hair and start to feel sick. The Ache is there too, always there. I look at my hands and feel them go a little numb. I wonder if I'm getting the meaning all wrong. "Don't be like that."
The Ache settled in my chest three and a half years ago, and I can feel its restless prowling tonight. Maybe it is a brick or a stone, and sometimes I don't even mind it being there.
I open my eyes and start to wonder if it's time to let the bitterness go. "Don't be like that."
I roll over, reach up to turn the light off and try in vain to turn my thoughts off just as easily.