Love to NieNie's Stephanie & Christian Nielson from New York

Stephanie Nielson and her husband Christian a few months before the Aug. 2008 plane crash.

Update 7/8/11: At this point, I just laugh when the Stephanie Nielson stories pop big, as they did yesterday. It’s as if Stephanie just pops in, without an invite, keeping me on my toes. Her timing was perfect yesterday, prompting me to weave her incredible story into a new post of a ‘Beauty Revolt’ editorial from L’Officiel Ukraine. A similar statement from Vogue Italia is in the queue. As always, Stephanie helps us put life in perspective. Read my new musing about Stephanie Nielson: NieNie’s Stephsnie Nielson Faces ‘Flawless’ Beauty Head-on.

For inexplicable reasons I went looking for old digital friends today. Most likely, the fact that one is in town inspires me to wonder about the others — the people who have touched our lives, even though we haven’t met them. 

Wandering is a total luxury when you have no time to lose. Today I visited several digital friends, some who would probably be surprised that I care about them so deeply. 

Stephanie Nielson, NieNie Dialogues

No one has caused me to reflect on life, physical beauty, tragedy, courage, resilience and love more than Stephanie Nielson. 

It was this brave Arizona-mother’s courageous fight to live and recover from her devastating injuries in a plane crash, that inspired my reflections on the meaning of love, relationships and physical image in America and my own life.

Reading that first Stephanie Nielson post now, the entire case of characters remains in my life — for once. Perhaps this is Stephanie’s influence operating. 

Perhaps I’m getting better at permanency in a life lived very much in the moment — and for good reason. 

The story of Stephanie Nielson’s recovery is detailed in my periodic check-ins with her, all quiet and unobserved.

In no way am I a member of the NieNie inner-circle. 

via Flickr’s Crativity+Timothy K Hamilton

The Nielson Marriage Thrives in Arizona Bedrock

In the month of June 2010, when the Gore marriage has suddenly dissolved before the nation’s eyes, along with those of two Gore daughters, the Nielson marriage remains strong.

In truth, the Nielson marriage and family structure is one for the Hallmark anniversary book. In a world of dysfunctional families, their’s operates on legal steroids. 

On a deeply personal level, I’ve been touched by the Nielson’s love for each other. While I haven’t read the entire NieNie blog, documenting the ‘perfect life’ of Mr and Mrs Nielson and their four children before the plane crash, there’s no doubt that the marriage was and remains a grand love affair.

Sexy, too. With all America’s women too busy to desire sex with their husbands, Mrs Nielson welcomed the encounters — not that she detailed them in any way. Mrs Nielson is a ‘proper’ woman, one who understands the delicate balance between inspiration and TMI. 

When in doubt, Stephanie cuts away early. 

Stephanie Nielson — and now Mr Nielson — have a beautifully-honed ability to make poetic, deeply personal statements in a few words or photos that touch all but the most unyielding hearts. And they find humor in the tragedy.

Yes, Mr Nielson is now blogging, too. I didn’t read enough pages today to understand if they wrote together, or Mr Nielson is standing in for his beautiful wife, who is back in the hospital. 

Stephanie Nielson | American Beauty

Those of us who struggle with or have fought body image issues seem darn self-indulgent compared to Stephanie Nielson. In Aug 2008 I wrote:

If Stephanie Nielson lives, she will be a dramatically different woman, inside and out.  She will be severely scarred in a world that pursues beauty and perfection.

I was on the treadmill in Dec 2009, when I looked up from my dance trance and saw Stephanie’s face on the TV screen. Having tracked her progress, I knew that Stephanie was alive. But here she was on Oprah — with her sister and very handsome husband Christian — facing all the world. 

Salty tears hit the fast-moving rubber. 

Stephanie Nielson’s New Neck and Challenges, Too

Stephanie has an amazing fortitude and sense of humor about her disability. Yes, she’s surrounded by loving family and a major support system dedicated to keeping her children’s lives functioning, along with hers and Christian’s. But her unyielding spirit makes me feel weak by comparison. I only hope that I could exhibit 1/3 of Mrs Nielson’s composure and courage under similar circumstances. 

Please read NieNie for details of Stephanie Nielson’s condition. I don’t believe that she is in any danger, but two year’s after the crash, Stephanie continues to require more surgery to repair her original damage and also health care for new, unanticipated problems stemming from her injuries.

 (a visit after church on Sunday)

I love these girls. I’m glad to have all my chicks gathered ‘round.

Stephanie had a tough weekend. She’s been sad and in lots of pain and discomfort. The healing process has been lagging a little. Any positive vibes (prayers) you could send her way would be appreciated.

Love, Mr. Nielson

p.s. A call for advertisement - if you are interested in advertising with NieNie on nieniedialogues, or nie and you, or cuisine nie, please contact Written May 31, 2010.

Patrick, Feanne, W

Two years later my other friends from the NieNie Dialogues: New Connections in a Digital World are in my life — moreso than Stephanie Nielson.

Patrick Talev-Karanfilovic is doing well; I spoke with him this week. Feanne will be in New York in July, and I’m thrilled to meet her. W wrote me in early May on a day when I really needed him. His sixth sense kicked in, leaving me startled over his timing, when I picked up my Blackberry at 6am. 

“How did you know that I needed to talk to you?” I wrote him. 

via Flickr’s wallyg. This Robert Indiana sculpture on NYC’s Sixth Avenue is also located in Scottsdale, Arizona. To Real Beauty

As she requests, we continue to pray for Stephanie Nielson, but also to thank her profusely for all she has taught us about life. My words from summer 2008 summarize my feelings about Mrs Nielson. Her influence is strong here at Anne of Carversville

In closing, let us toast beauty, the sensual beauty of everyday life. It surrounds us; we breath it without thinking.  Without warning, it’s often lost before we understand just how precious it is … before we savour beauty with all our senses.

To living consciously, and to the (apparently-SCRATCH THAT!) wonderful woman named Stephanie Nielson.  

I stopped my personal post sign offs about a year ago. The website has grown so much from my original journal, it seems no longer appropriate. Today, I think that if Mr Nielson can do it, so can I. Just this once in awhile  … 

Love, Anne

This is the NieNie story, with updates on both articles:

The NieNie Dialogues: New Connections in a Digital World

NieNie Lovers: Stephanie Nielson’s Marriage Before the Crash

In honor of Mr Nielson, we point out an unfortunate fact in American life: Men Six Times More Likely to Leave Wife Than She Him in Cancer Cases

NieNie’s Stephanie Nielson Faces ‘Flawless’ Beauty Head-on