Art of Aging: Writing haiku

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Losing a spouse can be difficult, but there is one group of widows finding comfort in each other's company.

When Roslyn Wexler of Huntingdon Valley lost her husband of 50 years, she lost her soul mate.

"We did everything together and all of a sudden it's like falling off a cliff," said Roslyn.

Marilyn Mason of Philadelphia said, "It's all encompassing. Some days I feel like I can't even lift my head off the pillow."

Both are finding support in WConnection, a group of widows who meet the third Tuesday of every month.

Susan Gross is the leader of The WConnection of Philadelphia.

She said, "The mission is to help woman who are ready to rebuild their lives in a positive way."

To help the widows heal, chapter Leader Susan Gross has them writing haiku.
Bebe Schwartz of Whitemarsh Twp. said, "She wanted us to go deeply inside ourselves, and to, in just a few short words, find an emotion and then express it. And, that's the point of haiku."
"It's only 17 syllables, you can express an amazing emotion that may have been buried inside," said Susan.

Roslyn said, "It's a form of relieving your feelings, you know saying what you think."
Along with the poetry, they also share their personal stories, and the pain and suffering of losing a spouse.

Arleen Weinstein of Elkins Park said, "It actually makes me feel better. Coming to the meetings and sharing with women who have gotten through it, it gives me hope that I'll get to where they are."

"It helps to give us inner strength, listening to the stories," said Annette Field of Elkins Park.

Bebe added, "This is a place where I can begin my life again."

For more stories and programs for seniors, visit our Art of Aging section.
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