I’ll bet you want  me to explain the title of this article in one paragraph and let you get back to your search for healing.

It’s never quite that easy is it?

That last sentence was a hint, by the way.

Truthfully, I  don’t want to make today, or any day harder for you, so I promise to make this one short.

Consider this: the real reason why a program like Alcoholics Anonymous works, is shared & applied experience.

The people in that room KNOW what the problems feel like.  They KNOW what worked for them and what failed them.  They KNOW they were (and are) faced with a problem too great to solve by themselves.   They also know that making progress in their own struggles is greatly aided by giving help to others who are not quite as far along the road to healing.

Why is this model not the universal template for Grief Recovery ?

It is true that some former addicts recover without programs of any kind.  It is also true that some hurting people find away to cope and carry on without seeking any support group or organization.  I still feel the need to ask every hurting grief stricken soul  the same question:

Knowing that there is NO EASY WAY to recover, why choose the hardest way imaginable: alone?

This organization, “The Open to Hope Foundation,”  gives you access to hundreds of people who have suffered and survived.  WELCOME !    Please come back often and browse the stories and interviews .  It’s a massive mixed buffet of comfort food and organic healthy antioxidant glutton free healing for your soul.

For those of you who have lost a child, I strongly suggest “The Compassionate Friends.” There are chapters and meetings all over the world.  Google them!  You will find yourself sitting with the only people in the world who can say ” I know how you feel,”  and not be absolutely WRONG.

These two (of many) are also gateways to other teams and individuals who offer priceless gifts of understanding, encouragement and healing.  Please don’t pass up the chance to accelerate your journey through the obstacles and help bring you to some lasting peace.

OK, so the secret is out: you don’t have to do the grief marathon by yourself.

So, have you guessed what the biggest lie is ?  Here it is: “It’s OK, everything will be all right.  Time heals all wounds.”

Really? You can learn to live with your loss, you can go forward and have a life of meaning and purpose with adventure and even real joy, but it will never be “all right” and some wounds do not ever fully heal.

That sounds depressing but it doesn’t have to be.  In my experience, the healthiest, deepest, kindest people in the world are those who have overcome difficulties and loss.

Will you be one of those people?  Will you be one who learns how to go on and instead of making grief a handicap, uses the understanding as a motivator.  Will you live in the darkness of your pain, or will you strive toward the light to honor the life of the one you lost?

This isn’t a choice you make just once.  It’s a choice you have to make over and over again.  It’s not going to be easy.  It’s not even going to be ‘fine’, but please believe me when I say that your life can be rich and filled with wonder and joy – along with those tears.

Earlier, I referred to “The Open to Hope Foundation” as a buffet of healing. To continue with the “food for thought” analogy, I happen to think that many foods are better with a bit of salt.  Perhaps life’s joys are seasoned with a tear or two to make them  more memorable and valuable.  It’s a secret ingredient I would have rather skipped, but I encourage you, please, seek those people who are willing to share their recipe for a better life after loss.

So, for many of you reading these words now, you’re thinking, ” I already know that !” Great, pass it along.

When you think of the people that you know who are the most giving, most supportive, most willing to help, ask yourself, “why?”  Is it because they are just better people?  Is it because they have more time them other people do?  Perhaps it’s because they have learned the best kept secret:   Helping others is the greatest therapy in the world.

Look closer at those people who give of themselves all the time.   In my experience, they are also the ones who know what real joy is. They have priorities that matter and lives that have purpose and meaning.  Be one of those people and others will want you as a friend.  Be one of those giving, loving, sharing people and when you find yourself at the end of your rope, there will be others who will pull you back up.  It’s the best investment of energy and emotion you can make.  The return is amazing.


That’s it,  I told you I’d keep it short.   I write and play songs, they are seldom more than 4 minutes long.  Short is what I do.   I hope this finds you healing and I hope it motivates you to keep looking for wisdom AND  keep giving a little kindness and patients to the others on this same road.

Be well, be wise, be willing, be blessed.




You can hear some of my music and purchase my TCF37 CD ( crafted with healing in mind)  at www.MichaelNunleyProductions.com


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Michael Nunley

Michael Nunley's love for music began in his youth. He was singing in churches and sharing the stage with well known performers in shows and television appearances all across the Ohio Valley. Growing up in a military family, Michael traveled extensively. He considers himself blessed to have experienced the beauty and diversity of so much of our world and it's people. Michael was a music scholarship recipient at Walters State College and at The University of Tennessee. As a member of the U.T. Singers, he toured and performed as a soloist with "Tennessee's Musical Ambassadors." He continued his involvement in the performing arts, playing guitar, bass, synthesizer and percussion as well as expanding his vocal abilities. He began to write and record his own music while serving as Interim Worship Leader at his church. It was during this time he produced his first CD of original songs as a music department fund raiser. In 2010, the Governor of Kentucky awarded Michael membership in The Honorable Order of Kentucky Colonels, the state's highest title of honor, for writing and performing the theme song, "Because We Care", for the Kentucky Employee Charitable Contribution campaign. In 2000, tragedy struck twice, causing Michael to have a deeply personal change in his attitude and understanding of loss and grief. His sister, Cyndy, took her own life shortly before his father, Col. Billy F. Nunley (U.S.A.F.) lost his fight with a cancerous brain tumor. Michael is profoundly grateful for the opportunity to have written a song for The Compassionate Friends in 2011, and he found the experience brought him a new level of healing. He hopes to pass along some comfort with his poetry and music. He encourages others to use the creative process of writing, as he has done, to take care of "spiritual housekeeping" and help "Define, Confine, and then Refine " the sorrow into a more constructive energy. Michael says, "Grief is natural. What's UN-natural is dying from it in solitude. Accepting help, learning from it and passing along the healing is far better. That seems to me to be a cycle of life that will expand our compassion without killing the possibility of joy."

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