There are officially ten days left until the Nie Nie Benefit Concert. Every day until the concert I will be having special guests on the blog to share thoughts on Nie and how she has inspired their lives. Let the countdown begin!
Well, since it's 12:30 a.m. right now and I just decided to do this, I will go first. But check back in for tomorrow's AWESOME mystery guest!
You know, it hasn't always been easy for me to make solid girlfriends. Let's just lay it out on the table. It's a sensitive subject. As I was organizing the Nie concert in Mesa, AZ, one of the volunteers called me one night to talk about concert details. Toward the end of our conversation she shared that in the recent past, she had been going through some personal difficulty. Stephanie, knowing of her trials, gave her my first album as a gift explaining that it had helped her to feel peace. The girl took one look at the CD and said, "Wow, she looks like she could be a brat! Are you sure this is good?" Stephanie quickly came to my aid exclaiming, "she is the sweetest person you will ever meet!" Somewhat shocked at this girl's honest confession over the phone, yet deeply impacted by the way that Stephanie had stood up for me, I sat speechless for a few seconds. It's always interesting to hear conversations that go on about you when you're not there. It may seem a small thing, but no one will know how personal this was for me. I cried. Through the night. (I repeat, it's a sensitive subject.)
What I adore the most about Stephanie is that she is not guarded in the way she expresses love--and she loves everyone. This is always a sign of sincere confidence and self-respect. I did not know her all that well in high school. But after graduating, she contacted me and took the initiative to reach out to me in friendship. We became friends through email and I was always so excited to see "Stephanie Nielson" in my inbox. She signs her letters with expressions like "kisses" or "xoxoxo" which may seem strange from a person you haven't known all that well in the past. But this is her way. She is genuinely loving, so selfless, so extraordinary, so "Nie-ish."