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  • Writer's pictureKara Chatham

Belong Somewhere

Everyone has the desire to belong somewhere. At least, that is what I am told time and time again. We are created for community. But for some, fitting in and finding that place where we belong is more difficult than we are lead to believe. There are so many examples out there of there being outsiders becoming insiders. It's the most popular theme seen in just about every form of story telling.

In the film The Sisterhood of Night, this is essentially the focus. They created a sisterhood where everyone could belong because it was created around the secrets that everyone keeps. They share them and then symbolically burn them. It really is a nice idea. They would do this in groups of about five, which in the grand scheme of things is not that many people knowing your secrets. Sure you have to trust that those in the circle that night would not say anything to anyone else about the secret you shared, but it provided a sense of belonging.

I think it's interesting that the girl who was considered the leader of the sisterhood had the biggest fear of being alone. It was cool seeing how Mary Warren decided to admit her fear. The photo collection was a creative way to share this with the one person she wanted to know. It also stood out because it was different than everything else we know about the secret sharing. This also emphasizes the theme of wanting to belong somewhere. It also shows what, I think, is commonly known, which is even those who are surrounded by many can still feel like they are alone.

I know it has been a struggle for me to feel like I fit in and belong in a group of people. The first time I really and truly felt like I fit in somewhere - in a group of people - was when I traveled with the WinShape Camps for Communities Green Team in 2015. I didn't feel like an outsider. I felt loved and encouraged and welcomed. I think this is something everyone looks for. And it is an unbelievable blessing when that community is found.

Something that I want to know is why can we find this wherever we go? Why is it that so many people have experiences like I did, where we struggle to feel like we fit in and belong? Because we are human and we make mistakes. We have our own ideals of what community is meant to look like, but I think we can all agree that it is meant to be a place where we feel loved and encouraged and are heard. The ways that these things are achieved looks different depending on those involved in the community.

These are just some of my thoughts on the idea of community after watching Sisterhood of Night. I do wonder what things would look like, for females specifically (I cannot speak to what things are like for guys), if there were sisterhoods like these in existence. Who knows, maybe there are and like the sisterhood in the film, are kept secret. But I don't know if it would solve the feeling of being left out or like they don't belong that many feel.

Who is to say why this is a feeling we feel. I know I don't remember why this was a constant feeling for me when I was in middle and high school. I just remember the way it felt. This doesn't mean that this feeling has left, because there are times where it appears for me. What has changed is the way I see it and the way I react to it.

Until next time...


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