Why “JoyReturns?”

If you are new to the site welcome.  Here is why “JoyReturns”.


My husband Joe unexpectedly passed away 5 years ago (March 2008)  and I wanted to learn how to recover from grief.

Most blogs I found were:

  • Depressing looking.
  • Did not encourage me to stick around and further explore their site.
  • Gave all the nitty-gritty details of the deceased illness, accident and passing. (TMI)

Support Groups Role

The church I attend runs Church Initiative’s Griefshare program.  I was a participant for a year when I was asked to become a co-facilitator.  That was 2 years ago.

The program’s tagline is “From Mourning to Joy”. It is because of that tagline that I decided to incorporate joy into my blog’s title.


I want visitors to see a cheery, optimistic and welcoming site.  Through my adventures hopefully they will see joy does return to their lives and/or the lives of their loved one.

If a visitor is not grieving than hopefully my experiences will educate them what a grief journey is like, how to help widows, (hint – see the “Just Be There” tab) and not to be scared of us widows.

My Life

Joy returned to my life and it will to yours or your friend or loved ones.  It takes time and requires a lot of patience.

God has used widowhood and unemployment as a learning and growing experience which has increased my capacity to give and receive love, comfort and joy.


  • I’ve reviewed your website and just registered to get posts. I am a financial advisor that works mainly with widows. I praise God that I have not had that personal experience, but I work with (and have a family filled with) many fabulous people that are widows. I look forward to sharing your website with them.

  • You do have a joyful site! I’m from FFL so we will be getting better acquainted. We’re in this together! I love “Express Yourself.” May I borrow that?

    • Yes, you may borrow “Express Yourself” Shary. I did that because my husband’s nephew loves Madonna. Looking forward to getting acquainted. I love being apart of the FFL group.

  • Browsing the weekly photo challenge (nighttime) and came across this. My husband and I were widowed when we met (him for a year and me for 4 years). We’re coming up on our 11th anniversary. We also went through Grief Share, once as participants and again as co-facilitators. I would highly recommend that program!! So glad to find you. The Lord is Good.

    • Thank you for visiting and commenting. Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary. May God bless you with many more. They re-did the Griefshare videos so in a way I feel like a first-timer again. It is wonderful seeing people heal a little bit each week. Indeed the Lord is Good! Hallelujah!

  • Hi Michele! My name is Jen and I am one of your new tribe members from SITS 🙂 Excited to learn more about your blogging goals and provide some group support. Lovely to meet you!

  • I LOVE your mission statement and what God is doing in your life! Many blessings on you!

  • I love your blog and the way you encourage others. God has a special plan for you and you are figuring it out. Many people will be blessed by your blog. May God bless you and your blog always, Diane http://www.recipesforourdailybread.com

"Express Yourself"

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