Loss, Grief, and the Longing for Human Connection

Couple walking on beach at sunset

Photo by RonAlmog

(This post originally appeared on Living Successfully With Aphasia)

About a month ago, driving in the early morning madness that is New Jersey traffic, I listened to this piece on NPR.  With the death of Osama Bin Laden has come a plethora of articles, photos, blogposts:  people’s emotional holding places have been disturbed, and everything is raw again.

This podcast was made by Beverly Eckert, who lost her husband, Sean on 911.  She recorded the podcast four years after his death, but the words sounded new and the feelings full as I drove the highway in muted sunlight.  Loss, grief, the longing for human connection.  These are what I heard, what I hear in the conversations I have with people living with aphasia.  And, like Beverly, the time that passes does not really soften the pain.

 Vision blurred, I pulled over to the side of the road, and wept.  It will not be the last time I am able to share in another’s longing for the return of what was.

Shirley Morganstein and Marilyn Certner Smith co-founded Speaking of Aphasia, a Life Participation practice in Montclair, NJ where people with aphasia instruct her daily in their journey. Recently, Shirley began a blog focused more on her personal thoughts about the people she has met and her own process as a therapist