Losing Lincoln has opened up doors that I never could have imagined existed. Suddenly, I am a member of the worst secret club you can imagine. I am learning a whole new vocabulary: bereaved mother, still father, born silent. In the weeks following Lincoln’s birth, as I shared our loss I had many open up and tell me that they had a similar experience. Cousins, family friends, co-workers, even sisters. How did I not know of these losses before? Why don’t we talk about these events? In this day and age when mental health is a major topic, it seems backwards. But unless you are in the club, you really can’t even begin to understand how that other person is feeling. In one instance, I want to shout from the roof tops that I am a mother and my child is in heaven. I feel as though it is almost something invisible that I wear and I hope that people will ask about my children. But I don’t want to bring someone down or have them pity me. I met someone new last week and when she asked if I had kids, initially I said no. That immediately felt wrong and I grappled over finding the right words to explain that my son died before he was born. It is also an unspoken element as I travel for my job. People ask how I am, tell me I look good, give me hugs but never really ask about Lincoln. When I returned to work, I requested that people let me lead. I would talk about Lincoln when I felt moved to do so. Now I feel like I shouldn’t bring it up. They aren’t in the club. I don’t want them to worry about me or judge me thinking that I should have moved on by now. A story shared by one friend does make me thankful for the progress that has been made. Her mother lost her brother late in her pregnancy. As a mom, she was not allowed to hold the baby or go to the small funeral held for him. My friend shared that her mother never really dealt with the loss until recently when a neighbor suffered a similar tragedy. I cannot imagine suffering in silence for almost 50 years. But even now, I seek out another loss mom when I want to talk. After all, we are members of an unsought, terribly elite club.