Last September I learned of Nie and shared her story with all of you.
This past weekend she posted an "after crash" photo of herself and met her goal of hiking the Y on the one year anniversary of the crash.
This is an open letter to Nie:
A little less than a year ago, I learned of you, of the crash, and spent my entire Sunday reading your blog from oldest entry to most recent. I fell in love. I kept thinking, "Please, God, this beautiful, pure, amazing, inspiring woman...this incredible wife and mother... she just has to live." I sent you, Mr. Nielson, CJane, and the children lucky pennies and whatever words I could muster up. At Halloween, I sent you a card, decorated my house, and dressed up in costume for the first time in years. A lover of summer, always sad to see it go, I suddenly saw the beauty and God's love in the bold, bursts of Fall colors and the heart-shaped crysanthymum bush which I took pictures of and sent to you. I thought about all of you every day and said many prayers like many people all across the world.
In May, I took my first trip to California (San Francisco) with my husband (I live in Massachusetts) with a layover in Salt Lake City. As we lifted off and I saw the mountains from the air, I couldn't stop staring. Breathtaking. I wondered if maybe that little town down there, tucked into the mountains, was Provo and I was seeing the Y from above without knowing it. I gave a little wave and whispered, "Hi, Stephanie!(and Christian, and Claire, Jane, Ollie, Nicholas, Courtney, Chup, Chief, Lucy, and the rest of your beautiful, amazing family)" I love living near the ocean, but I can now understand why you adore your mountains so.
Today I checked in on your blog for the first time in a couple of weeks and saw your sweet, beautiful face staring lovingly at Mr. Nielson. "She really is alive! Thank you, God! Thank you, thank you, thank you..." and more beautiful than ever, I say. Thank you, Stephanie Aurora Clark Nielson, for your spirit, bravery, honesty, inspiration, and so much more. Congratulations on hiking the Y for the first time AC!!!!! I have a feeling this is just the beginning.
With love, admiration, and thanks,
P.S. I have had Lymphedema in my legs and feet since the age of 16. I know all about wearing Juzos. So fashionable ;-) I've learned that the lady makes the outfit <3