Good Grief | Guest Column

by Sally Blumenthal, MFT, RN

I would love to offer a Good Grief Group, open to anyone on Orcas who is feeling the loss of a loved one and would appreciate the support of others on a similar journey. Especially after living through Covid for the last 2 years there has been additional stress in our lives, the unknown, the changes, the loss of familiarity, schedules, routines, seeing peoples’ faces and smiles, illness, death, loss of jobs. I believe the entire world has been impacted by all these losses and I believe when you grieve one loss, you grieve all your losses, or work hard to avoid them all. So we have a lot of work to do. I also have personally and professionally experienced the healing power of grief and moving into a more loving and lighter world as grief can be replaced with understanding, acceptance and more joy. Reality is easy, it’s what we do in our heads, the anxiety and anticipation that keeps growing until we heal that feels insurmountable.

Good Grief will meet once a week for 6 sessions. We will be a closed group. I will do intakes with interested participants. I would love for us to meet in person, (with masks if necessary inside, or outside), in a safe private space for an hour and a half.

I was originally a pediatric ICU nurse who became a hospice nurse before there was hospice where I lived so I started one in Santa Cruz, Ca. I later went to grad school in psychology and became a marriage and family therapist. I was one of our county’s first AIDS Coordinators before going into private practice where I specialized in dealing with life threatening illness, dying, death, grief and living life with joy. I have been studying Therapeutic Touch since the late 70’s which is what first brought me to Orcas Island and Indralaya. I have been coming every summer since and now have a home here and have the privilege and joy of living in my healing place. I taught at Santa Clara University for over 20 years again with a focus on healing from loss and grief, and still living with joy. I believe grief is the ultimate healing journey, to support others as they move through the pain of loss into more light and love is truly an honor.

Please call me at 831 818 1280 or email me at and take a deep breath.

We will begin our group the first week of September and there will be a onetime fee of $30.00