In 1961, Michael Rockefeller, son of then-governor of New York State, Nelson A. Rockefeller, mysteriously disappeared off the remote jungle-lined coast of southern New Guinea. Amidst the glare of a worldwide front-page news event, the governor, along with his daughter Mary, Michael’s twin, set off on a futile search, only to return empty handed and empty hearted. What followed were Mary’s 27-year repression of her grief and an unconscious denial of her twin’s death, which haunted her relationships and controlled her life.
In this startlingly frank and moving memoir, “Beginning with the End”, Mary R. Morgan struggles to claim an individual identity, enabling her to face Michael’s death and the huge loss it engendered. With remarkable candor, she shares her spiritually evocative healing journey, which moves her forward into a life of new beginnings and meaning, especially in her work with others who have lost a twin.
Mary R. Morgan provides fascinating insight into the unique challenges and complexities of twin bereavement, while showing how much it has to teach about the subject of grieving and healing from any deep personal loss. As a therapist, she discusses her work with the twin survivors of the 9/11 World Trade Center disaster and shares the difficulties of healing in a culture that fears death and offers little time for grieving.
Powerful, honest, inspiring, “Beginning with the End” chronicles a remarkable journey of grief, healing, and a reengagement with life. Ultimately, it is a story of hope, remembrance, and reconnection to the twin bond and to Michael’s spirit that will forever touch hers.