HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - A unique international convention is coming to Huntsville on Friday, the focus is a kind of grief few people face.
The Twinless Twin International Support Group is having its annual conference at the Westin from Thursday, July 11 to Saturday, July 13.
The group is focused on creating a supportive and healing community for twins who have lost their twin.
Venice Lacy is on the Twinless Twins board and has been a member since 2011, when she lost her twin unexpectedly.
The grief Lacy went through was not like anything she had experienced before.
“I knew that this was different, I knew there was no way I was the only one feeling this way,” she said.
Lacy had lost family members before, but she said this was different.
“When you have a twin you have a sibling and a best friend and you've known each other before you’ve been on the outside,” she said.
Lacy said just eight weeks after her twin died she began looking for people who would understand.
“The pain in my heart is what really drove me, it’s like my heart is broken into a million pieces and it’s really hard to describe unless you’re a twinless twin,” she said.
When Lacy went to her first conference she said she found connections she did not have with family members.
“Grief and death and loss is uncomfortable to people and this was a place where I could share feelings about that and about my twin and losing my twin,” Lacy said.
Lacy has gone to the annual conference since 2011, she’s watched the group grow. She said the board is expecting about 130 people at the conference and even a twinless twin from England.
She said she looks forward to the conference every year and to see the friends she’s made through her time.
One of those friends is Jacob Yurich, he is from Denver and lost his twin in 2001 when they were both 11.
Yurich did not join Twinless Twins until 2016 though, he said he was not ready to deal with his twin’s death until then.
“It got to a point where I didn't want to live like that anymore,” Yurich said. “I wanted to live a full life, I wanted to experience joy and even sadness. And part of that came from my brother and opening up to that grieving.”
Yurich has now gone to the conference four straight years and called it life changing.
I'm more compassionate, more in touch with my feelings, more in touch with my emotions,” he said.
Lacy said the conference is always open to walk-ins, if anyone in the area has lost a twin and is looking for people to understand.