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The Lost: Living With Ambiguous Loss

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[AARP] [Real Possibilities] [THE CATHEDRAL CHURCH OF SAINT JOHN THE DIVINE] [♪ My desert is waiting ♪] [♪ Dear, come there with me ♪] [Charles G. Wolf] Even before I met Katherine, the Cathedral of St. John the Divine was a place that I loved. In fact I remember telling the Dean how I wanted to be married here. I sang to her at our wedding, holding hands. And I sang it again to her a cappella at her memorial service here. I wanted to say that I love you just as much now as I did the day I married you. If not more. We were together for about 13 years, married for 12. [♪ music ♪] Katherine had just started a job with Marsh & McLennan. She had been in the World Trade Center for 2 weeks. September 11th, 2011, American Airlines flight 11 crashed directly into her office. She was gone in an instant. I really hadn't lost anybody that close to me. But when it's your lifemate, your soulmate, it's very different. A fog immediately descends upon you and you could no longer see where it is you want to go. Your hopes, your dreams, your aspirations had been dashed. It wasn't until February of 2004 I began to feel the impact of not having had a body, but more to the point, not having a grave to go to. So when Marsh & McLennan put their memorial up it became the only place I could go. Some people get locked in their grief. Which is why getting psychological help is so important, especially if you're without a body. The 9/11 Memorial, I found to be very powerful. I was in awe of the whole thing. There's amazing peacefulness. The waterfalls. The water is life, and it falls down and then it flows to the middle, and you can't see where it goes. You can't see it. Where did the people go? Where are those two buildings that were each a quarter of a mile high? I mean, where are they? Reflecting Absence is the name of the memorial. I always run my finger across her name. And then before I go, I just give her name a quick kiss. That's just my way of kissing her goodbye. The museum does something totally different. It brings up the buried grief. It's an amazing place. But we asked for it to be that way. We said, "We want this to be accurate. "Don't sugarcoat it. Don't whitewash it. "No revisionist history. If it hurts, it hurts." Everybody grieves differently. Do you want to feel sorry for yourself or do you want to press on? I did not want this to ruin my life. I can say right now, here in 2014, I feel like I have come a long way. I will love again. [male speaker] I remember. >>[Charles G. Wolf] Thank you very much. Take care.

Video Details

Duration: 4 minutes and 25 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Genre: None
Views: 30
Posted by: aarp on Aug 5, 2014

Short profiles of friends/family members of people who are struggling with ambiguous loss--grief over those who have gone missing, either literally or figuratively.

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