People often speak to us about the difference in having someone missing and knowing what happened to your loved one. I don't think there is a pleasant choice here.
Speaking for the missing side, Nothing so far has been so sad and tragic as that first day we realized Jesse was missing. Now I think about the possibility that someday I will have to tell Donna and Andy that Jesse won't be coming home. I hope I get the call, then I can prepare them. This is what haunts my days now thinking of this day coming and the new sadness that will descend upon us. I have worked with our Deacon at church and his family is willing to help deal with this, notifying family and friends and all the details involved.
So I think the worst is when you have a missing and then get a gone.
Hope is the ingredient that makes missing more palatable. But for all, having support from those who love you and care for you and your missing is the ultimate salve for what ails us. Life is far too short to spend it grieving over what you can't change and ignoring the love around you.
Even when that missing is a gone, they have not gone far, merely to the arms of the same God we hope to see.
We see darkly now as thru a glass, but soon all will be revealed. There is plenty of sadness, we don't need to add more.
So we pray daily and feed off the good folks around us. They don't mind, Some day they will probably need us. And we will have to put our concerns aside and be there for them.
I read a story of a man who was put in a dark room and left there. Eventually He began to imagine a mouse he was feeding each day. When he was let out of the room he told his captors " I survived because I was needed". They then asked him to go into the world and tell everyone his secret, that one can survive anything if one feels needed.