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John Flyger flyger@xtra.co.nz Subject: Your wonderful tribute
Thank you for your wonderful tribute to Buffy and Eric, beautifully written. There are no coincidences so finding your tribute was meant for me at this time. Like so many I have lost beloved and much loved friends, my Holly Aug.12th 1997 aged 5 yrs and Moosonee after only 6 weeks, 7th Sept 1998. Thank you Nina, I will read it again and bookmark your page as well as pass it on to those others I have met on the net that also share a loss. I feel I know you, strange isn't it. Maybe it was in another place in another time and we were meant to touch each others' souls for a brief moment.

My dear, Dear Liz; Thank you for sharing with me,
and for letting me know of your appreciating and benefiting from the site. Sometimes, when it gets to be a bit "large" a task for me, messages like yours restore my vision, energy and inspiration for the grief-support ministry which has established itself and grown here. *smiling* Would like to know more about your loss. How and why did the children die? Each loss of life and loved ones has it's own tragic pain. I cannot imagine losing two children a year apart. I was deeply empathic with your loss, though I cannot really claim to know the pain of your own individual experience, I surely know the pain of losing my son, Eric. Only a month now since your recent loss. Are you doing okay? I am praying for you and your family. I really would like to know more about it all if you feel like sharing about it? Please do write again... I care deeply and will share your pain and restoration.... Arms around you with compassionate embrace, I remain,
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

Subject: Re: Thanks for the reply
I was overwhelmed to recieve your reply this morning. I do apologise for the confusion I caused. I didn't lose any children in the true sense of the word. They were my two Alaskan Malamute dogs. Sorry, I am embarrassed to say the least. It took me awhile to realise that Eric was your son, at first I thought he was your husband but later I guessed it was your son. I managed to raise three sons to adulthood...in fact when my first son was a few months old I asked the universe to grant me enough time to raise my boys to adulthood, I just couldn't bear the thought that they would grow up`without a mother. I was granted that wish and I am ever so grateful. I have lost my other babies too soon and that is what led me to the tribute for Abby. After I read the tribute I emailed a friend who had just lost her 16 1/2 yr old Malamute and told her about you. I went back to read some of the messages left by others and nearly fell over. The first one I read was nearly word for word what I had said. I then wanted to email you and say, " Nina, I didn't copy the sentiments from that message". It was amazing. So the power that drew that person to you, did the same for me. Probably another kindred spirit. Thank you again for the footprints. I have been truly blessed and I feel your spirit over these 12,000 miles. When our time comes to go over the rainbow bridge, we will not be strangers- we've touched already in this world. I read a thousand words between the lines in your letters and they tell a tale of love and spirit...........I don't need to say anymore......you've said it all. It is reluctantly I close for now.....the power is so strong from you. ~ LIZ

Hello again, Liz... I am sure that if you read Buffys' last days
then you know that I also understand that very special bond with our creature-children and soulmates! Buffy was 18 and I had her all her life. She was born a stray and picked up in a litter and taken to our Humane Society for extinction because she was so poor in health that they were not going to offer her for adoption. We chose each other and I got them to agree to let me take her. It was the closest relationship I ever had with a pet... though I always have a few... she was the one soulmate and I loved her so much! Your pain of parting is still pain and loss, even as any other... I am sorry for it and care about you in empathy and full comprehension. I did think it was an unusual name for a child... *S* Kindred spirits, yes... we truly are, and I cherish your coming into my life. Do write again to me. God is always blessing and keeping us and brings us together in times and ways that we can strengthen and support each other in sharing our experiences. *S* Thank you again for sharing yours. Write again sometime. Yours because I'm His... Hugs for {{{{{{{Liz}}}}}}}  from your GYPSY, (Nina)

Thank you again, Nina. I have never in my life experienced such feelings of loss for any other living thing as I did for my Holly- like Buffy was to you, Holly was my soulmate. She would look up at me on our daily walk and it was a real connection of spirit. Moosonee was only with us a short time and her loss was painful too. I still see her little face at the back door. Six months before Holly died I was close to death for some days...that experience taught me so much. It taught me that angels come in many guises, that life was too short to waste and that I was surrounded by love from so many. Sometimes I wonder if Holly took my place in the scheme of things for I would have gladly given anything and everything to have her back. Through my grief and the internet I have formed some wonderful friendships and whatever my purpose it is all unfolding as it is meant to be. I smiled when you said Moosonee was an unusual name.....well it is, it is a little place in Northern Ontario, the name stirs something in me. I smiled when I read your name.....I'm a bit of a gypsy too- born in Scotland 53 years ago, moved to Toronto when I was 5 yr and then to NZ when I was 15. For me I'm Canadian no matter where I live. I'm looking out the window and the blossoms are heralding the renewal of spring, the scent of citrus blossoms and portwine magnolia is blowing gently through the window. It's 7pm and peacefully quiet. Its been a joy talking with you, All the best, LIZ

Subject: A rainy Friday
Good Morning Liz; I enjoyed finding you here this morning! *big smile*. Interestingly, we are close in age (I am 55) and have been close to death (More than once) of my own as well as the terrible valley of the shadow of my precious Erics'death. And of Brandis' too! I know all too well how that leaves a lasting imprint of awareness of really living in the ~now~ moments and of not taking anything for granted. Ironically, I always did feel that to an extent - and never allowed my children to leave my presence without hugs and kisses *just in case we never had another meeting*.... It was always a firm part of me and of their upbringing along with "never let the sun go down on your anger". The latter did not always get honored by others whose choice was their own - but it has ALWAYS and invariably been my own discipline. I have two daughters, one 39 and one 37! *S* Eric would have been 25 by now. (You can see that I began early! *g* Now for another interesting thing.... My fiance' is Canadian and I am going to adopt citizenship,  (maybe) there when we marry (though we will be here often) For he has grown to love this home and location in the misty blue mountains of the Blue Ridge and the Shenandoah Valley. I was there in Canada for 8 days and it was my first time outside of the country. He flew me there and drove me home and stayed two weeks with us before he had to return there. Interesting coincidences.... Eh? (I have adopted that word from him...) *giggle* and he sometimes substitutes my own "Hmmmm?" too... We like to share everything, even dialects!
Love and hugs {{{{{{{Liz}}}}}} from your GYPSY, (Nina)

A good morning to you too. Its 7:53AM Sat and I'm off for my morning walk with my Sarge- he is Holly's brother who I rescued a few years back. He is nine now and very special. As time unfolds you and I will find many "coincidences". A few weeks ago I had another brush with death of the accidental kind ( the previous one was with peritonitis- 8 days in intensive care). My truck rolled back down the driveway as I was opening the gate it swerved at the last moment and took out a fence and a tree. I must have not put it in gear. I took it as a reminder..... I knew you would live in that part of the country.....funny to know such things. Your fiancee sounds like the perfect partner for you. I hope to hear more about him. Its raining here too but that won't stop our walk...those of us who have dogs are there everyday no matter what.... Have a lovely weekend and my regards to your special man. I'll talk to you later this weekend. LIZ

Hi Liz; I think that we will continue to be in touch and I look forward to more communication and sharing between us, *smile* This is a busy weekend for me... those little Fall tasks and pleasures. Thinking of canning some Stayman apples for apple-crisp and pies through the winter. Never canned them before, but my fiance' loves everything I do with apples.... *S* (or just about everything I do in the kitchen - period! *RVBG*! We are both going through acute "withdrawal" after being together for over three weeks! *frown* But we will survive it and count ourselves blessed to have such strong feelings for each other at "our age" *blushing-grin* I do hope that you are healing from your recent loss of your Moosonee. I am thinking of you and you are in my prayers. I am glad that you have others to keep you company and ease the absence for you a bit. If you would like our communications to be private in their continuance, please write to me in my personal e-mail, gypsy@shentel.net 
Love and hugs {{{{{{{Liz}}}}}}}, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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Subject: Foot Surgery ~ JWalk0002@aol.com
Hi, Nina: While searching for information on foot surgery, I stumbled on your daughter's (?) journal about your experiences last year. I am facing reconstructive foot surgery on both feet in late October, since that's the soonest they can get me in. This is due to severe structural bunions and some other congenital bone problems. Right now, I can only get around with crutches and I can't drive. I will have casts on my legs for 3-4 months following surgery. I was just wondering if you could share some of your experiences with me since I will be going through something similar as to what you did. Thanks for your time,
Jim Walker~ Louisville, KY

Hello Jim; Not sure just what it is that you are wanting to know about the surgery. I had several talks with my surgeon and at those times, he answered all of my questions and allayed my fears of the unknowns. I feel certain that you would do well to do that too. Being faced with the situations daily, it is they who will have the most information for you - not just myself with only the one-time experience of my own. I pray that all will go well for you and you will heal well and get on with your life. I am very pleased that I chose to have my feet fixed and I'm sure that you will be too. Sorry to have been so long in answering but I just returned from a long visit to Canada and meeting with my family-to-be.
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

Hi, Nina: Thanks for writing back.
I was just wondering if you had a similar procedure as I am going to have (reconstructive surgery). I have gotten all information from my doctor regarding the surgery, but I was just wondering, in your case, how long before you could bear weight, and until that time that you could bear weight, were you just stuck in the house or could you get out? I am/was a pretty active person, and I get cabin fever easily. Just thought you might share some experiences or pointers that may make life easier for me in the coming months.
Thanks again for your time, and God bless! ~ Jim

Hello again Jim; Yes, I did have reconstructive surgery.
I waited so long to have the corrections made (at 54) that I developed neuromas from the way I walked, two in each foot. I opted to remove only one in each foot though, for I was unsure about my ability to deal with a larger area of permanent numbness in my feet & toes. When they remove the neuroma, the areas between and around two toes no longer has feelings. I was glad that I opted to remove only one on each foot - for I hate the numbness and it is questionable whether I will ever adjust to it. It has been a year almost, and I have not adjusted yet, I just try to ignore it. The bunionettes removed from the sides were really large and prominent and it required a realignment of the toes. The long bone at side of foot was cut through diagonally on a long cut and a section removed and then screws were put in to hold the bones together. I have a most excellent surgeon, Dr Rhodes, who uses the latest of techniques and is God-gifted and skilled in his work. I am very blessed to have him as my Orthopedist! The first weeks after surgery were pretty bad... I had been told that it would be and was prepared for it. It required having my above my heart. This precludes much sitting up! I caught up on a lot of television watching! *g* I also did a lot of internet ~traveling~ on a laptop which was purchased for me just before the surgery. Since my surgery was all at the side and toe-end of my feet, I had to walk on my heels-only (until those side bones were healed enough to walk carefully with full foot)! Now that is quite a trick even with a walker! As far as the pain goes - it was considerably less than my hand surgeries and required no physical therapy afterwards either. The worst of the pain was in the first few weeks and was associated with the great swellings which remained for a while. I hope yours goes well and you will be as pleased as I am with the results.
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

Hi, Nina:
Well, I've reached the final countdown. Next Monday, I'll be in the hospital getting my feet fixed. I just don't know how I will adjust to the immobility of having both legs in casts. I know this is for the better, though. Our foot problems sound similar. My mother had bunion surgery (not this severe) when I was a kid. I think I inherited her foot problems, and to make things worse, I played all the major sports in high school and played football in college. My doctor thinks that I had stress fractures in my feet and just went without treating them at that time. My feet always hurt, but coaches always told me to "shake it off". Over the past three years, things have gotten progressively worse, up until the point that 2 months ago I had to start using crutches to get around. I have two severe structural bunions which require reconstruction of the mainbone (instep) of each foot. I also have bunionettes on each little toe that have to be removed. As a result, these bunions on each side of each foot have pushed my other toes out of alignment and caused the metatarsal bones to strike the ground first with each step. This had caused pain so bad (like walking on gravel barefoot), I finally couldn't bear weight on my feet anymore. So my surgery entails cutting most of the bones in the front part of my feet and securing them back together with pins and screws, which explains why I will be in casts for 8-10 weeks. At least they have made arrangements for me to work in a wheelchair, once I feel like going back. I hope I am not off work very long. You e-mail was very encouraging, in that you were very satisfied with the results of your surgery. My doctor had also given me patients to talk to who had had similar surgeries, and they are very pleased with the results as well. Anyway, thanks for the words of encouragement, and I hope the best for you and your family.  ~  God bless, Jim

Good Morning Jim; Well - not knowing where YOU are - it may or may not be morning, but here in Virginia, it is morning. A nice gentle rainy one at that, and we sorely need it! Nice to hear from you again, Jim. I know all about those countdown feelings.... I had reconstructive surgeries on hands (three surgeries) - AND feet and a spinal fusion. I was scheduled for Fall every year since 1993. Then this summer I (doctor thinks) tore the meniscus (or something) of my right knee on our new monster-riding-mower (which I had no business mounting to begin with!) and am now slated for surgery after Thanksgiving. Am having a special 3-week procedure of Glucosamine injections first on that knee and then the surgery... They will do the arthoscopic thing and then fix what they find. Am hoping to hold out until after Thanksgiving. I DO hate (and sympathize) with you in the countdown. Know about ignoring the pain of feet too. I was a waitress for many of my early years (7)... and the neuromas are the consequence of years of the pain-ignoring and walking abnormally.... I doubt if wheelchair-working will do well - for there is a lot of swelling after the surgeries and it continues when you are up (even sitting) much at one time! It was a good 9 months before that stopped, Jim! Well - hate to rush but my guy is waiting for us to go to Winchester for shopping for our Brandis' birthday present and to have a lunch before he has to return to Canada (and abandon me! *sob, sniffle, weep!*) Write some more and perhaps you could arrange to have your computer set up by your bed for a while? It will greatly help ameliorate the pain by re-focusing your attention from the pain and helping to pass the time in recuperating and healing! I will always respond and help you in any way I can. Thanks for getting back to me to let me know how things are with you. I care. I really do.
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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"Robert Gates" rgates@pdq.net
Dear Eric's Mom, One small question:
"Eric, unlike the rest of us, due to corneal defects, saw 7 or 8 or everything where the rest of us see only one!" I am wondering how your dear son could get a drivers license and be allowed to drive a vehicle if he had such vision problems? Maybe this would have changed this wonderful young man's future. The Lord had placed into Eric one part of His divine personality. That part is eternally alive, it never died, it never will die. His part of the Person of the Lord always was alive in eternity past, is alive today in eternity present, and will be alive forever in eternity future. To be in the presence of this part of the Lord's personality, to experience this wonderful part, which is always living here with us, we just need to be in the Lord's presence. Isn't that WONDERFUL??? I love your site. I found it while searching for the Frog poem that my mother heard a preacher read so well on a Christian television program. I am telling people about your site. It has great emotional appeal and is the best site expressing a human presence I have found on the Internet. There is not much I would change on the site. I think that your site is an excellent memorial to your son Eric. Now we other people who express parts of the Lord's personality can be expanded and enriched by the part of Him that He imparted to Eric. Remember, the Lord never dies, he just keeps improving in form!
Meeting Eric in Eternity, Mary Katherine Gates

Hello Mary; Thank you for writing to me. I appreciate all the warmth, love and spirituality you expressed in your message to me. Thank you. In regards to: ----> I am wondering how your dear son could get a drivers license and be allowed to drive a vehicle if he had such vision problems? ^Erics' vision in multiples was corrected by the corneal transplants done at John Hopkins hospital in Baltimore (when he was 16 he had the first one(left) done, the second (right) at 17. This corrected that aspect of his vision. Hope you will visit and also share with others who might be blessed in some way or ways....
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

Hello again, Mary, to quote you,
----> Remember, the Lord never dies, he just keeps improving in form!
This statement has troubled me since your message arrived in e-mail guestbook. How could anyone ever even begin to think that the great "I AM" could die? Eternal and Immortal both apply to our Father and creator of all mankind. He is more than human and more than a collection of human souls or "presences"... He is beyond our limited capacity to comprehend while we are yet finite beings who are limited in our understanding by our own relatedness to time itself which is not relative to anything at all in Eternity. What "is" already "has been" and "is yet to be" from this side of the tapestry of mortal life of mankind. You also speak of Erics' pre-cornea-transplant vision irregularity as though there was some question of its' validity in being what it was (in multiples and I want to assure you that there was no question whatsoever as to this perception. The surface of his own corneas was thinned and also pitted {as a golf ball} and with the refraction of images resulting from that condition, he saw just as he said he did, in multiples. Being a writer, I find words to be rather discomforting at times though it is not likely that the source is necessarily intending any insult or controversy... so please do not feel offended that I've mentioned this - I just wanted to be sure that you did understand the condition and situation which caused you to question our allowing Eric to drive a car. Without the correction of the transplants from the loving generosity of the donors who gave the corneas to him, Eric would not even have tried to drive (nor would we have agreed to it). The accident which took Erics' life was entirely the fault of the encounter with the 8-foot roll of insulation material which was carelessly left behind the house and where the wind picked it up and brought it into the path of the Firebird.    The accident itself was thoroughly investigated by a conscientious private investigator, paid for and given to me by a dear friend who wished that I be fully informed of every aspect and circumstance and have the option of bringing wrongful death charges against the carelessness of the homeowner from whose yard the material came that night. In his excellent and detailed report, Gary Gocheneour related to me that the accident took place and Erics' life was taken in less than the space of thirty seconds altogether and that there was no driver fault of any kind. Mercifully, Erics' friend, Noel, who occupied the seat just behind Eric, was there and was able to relate clearly to me, the details of those fateful moments in time. I have thanked God over and over, and still do, for that merciful assurance (for me) of knowing that the impact was so fast and so hard that life ended without so much as one sound between one breath and the last from Erics' lips. I did not pursue prosecution or monetary award for the wrongful death because it would have been a terrible ordeal for all concerned and although it WAS a careless deed of neglect, it was also certainly a regrettable accident resultant from a wrong choice of allowing hazardous material to remain at the home. What good could have come of seeking monetary reward/punishment of the homeowner who made that choice. Considering all things, I felt that the best good would come of my public and pictorial relating of the tragic consequences of that choice which cost my sons' life, and that perhaps that price would best serve and save many others by bringing the story to the public where consciousness would be raised in many people who read and saw for themselves, Erics' tragic destiny. I just wanted to clarify this for you.
I remain, yours because I'm His ~ your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "Enchante`" bonbon@mvp.net
Nina ~ I can not put into words what I want to say to you... Please understand. Your prose, poetry overwhelmed me so. As a novice writter I am terriably moved and I do not move so easily. Please continue to be inspired by whatever motivated your inspiring thoughts and continue to write.... Your work is magnificient. I especially enjoyed " Goodbye" and " Seasons of My Life" I am adding you to my Poetry page as soon as I complete this letter. I hear the theme to Somewhere In Time also on your pages adding dimension to the words. I have 2 Somewhere In TIme Midi Pages. Feel free to visit ..... If you would like to read mine ( which pales to yours) it is at  http://www.mybonbon.com/midi-go-round/romanwrd.htm
I am attatching my UNSOLICITED poetry award to you... This award has been given only 6 times this year as so many sites I feel empty while reading...and depressed after.... Not so yours. If you accept the award and post it fine If you want to add my URL it is ok too But no matter it is yours as a sign of my respect for your works. ~~~~~ I remain Enchante`

Hello Enchante'; (such a melodic, romantic name!) Left this message in your guestbook. Additional message is below this
Hello Enchante'.... I just finished checking the guestbook, for I first found you around this time last year when I was recuperating from having both feet reconstructed and was doing lots of surfing while in bed then. Ironically, I received the unsolicited award from you now, two days ago, on my daughters' birthday, (the 24th of this month) and am going in for surgery again tomorrow morning! N.E.Way - since I could not find my original message from last year here which I was going to copy and include in the e-mail I am composing to you - I am signing in again! I loved your pages then and they have grown and been revamped since then and so I'm glad that you found me and signed mine! *s* The Cyber-world is not so small - but we found each other! *grinning* I do L-O-V-E your carousels! And the music. I remember sending your URL to every name in my L-A-R-G-E ~ICQ~ list and humongous email lists (all!)... Bye for now lovely lady! Love and hugs, yours because I'm His, your Gypsy, (Nina)
Later additional response
Thank you so much for all of your kind words and thoughts. We all love those strokes from fellow artists - don't we! May I call you Debra? *GFETE!*
----> I can not put into words what I want to say to you...
^your words are beautiful. Thank you for sharing your feelings and opinions regarding my work. I respect and appreciate that a lot, having met you through your pages prior to now. It is good that you wrote to me now though - for I have created two awards and you are deserving of both. As for writing and continuing it? I have written all my life - I was probably fully grown before I realized that everyone else didn't do that - I thought it was part of life, like breathing! *giggle*
If you did not suffer reading my work - than I doubt that you found the original pages which are those I first established to share and work through my grief at losing my son, Eric, just before he was to graduate from Ferrum college in 1996. You would certainly have shared much pain there- for I wrote much of the poetry within those early days after he was killed. Our Eric was also a writer and poet. One of the two awards I am sending you in following e-mail, was created in his honor & name. I have been told I have the largest website on the cyber-highway... that may be... and it's still growing (like yours)- fun isn't it! Hope that you found my guestbooks, they are quite unique and original. Thank you for appreciating my work and letting me know. I appreciate yours and you too. *tight hug* ~ >From your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "dean heffernan" hefferna@albemarlenet.com
Subject: the prayer
The mother's prayer is very inspirational. at times i feel i am not such a great mother but your poem really defines a mother.the music is beautiful. it brought tears of joy to my eyes. this a a spiritual website. it's a shame that there are not more like it!! can you send me any inspirational guides? pamphlets? It doesn't really matter. i was as a child of 12 years old.
In Christ, Sandra Heffernan

Subject: Re: the prayer
Dear Sandra; Thank you for writing to me. It means so much to me to hear that the homepage is a blessing to others. Are you saying that you were a mother at 12? I would like to hear more about you. How old are you now? How many children? ~ As for written materials - I do my writing and sharing right online and/or e-mail to individuals. Is there anything in particular you wanted or needed mentoring/support with? I will help in whatever I can. The site itself has become a ministry on its' own... I wasn't planing it that way, but God had His own plans *smile* and I just follow where He leads. I believe that He is always using us for each other - and I'm sure there is a special reason for every one of the visitors who find their way to this site. Let me know if there is a particular topic or need, Okay? ! Yours because I'm His, From your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "Connie Wheeler" conniew@tricor.net
Subject: Soooo much feeling.
So much love and feeling in your words and effort. It brought tears to my eyes. Your son was a talented writer and it is very evident he gleaned those talents from his mother. Here's to the future for you and the rest of your family.   ~   God bless, CJ

Hello Connie; Thank you for signing in and kindly letting me know you were here to visit. ~ Yours because I'm His... From your GYPSY, (Nina)

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Touching. My condolences!

Subject: Re: Condolances
Dan: Thank you.
Yours because I'm His, >From your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "glsrace" glsrace@itol.com
Subject: Responding to tribute to Eric Baker
Hello ; I too have lost someone very dear to my heart, my father. He died January 4th 1998. I can relate to your pain. I thank you for writing this for all to read,and realize we are not the only one having the many thoughts you have when you lose someone. Sometimes I hurt so bad I don't think i can survive. I am thankful he accepted the lord a few years back. But that doesn't change the fact I miss him and want him back. Somtimes I feel no one unserstands except my mother. My friend is so good to me . However I feel life is moving faster than ever and my life is standing still. Why can't I move on? I'm stuck in this terrible circle of pain and despair. Please tell me it gets easier! I must go now , once again thank you for your helpful words. glsrace

Subject: Re: Responding to tribute to Eric Baker
Hello....? (I am sorry, I do not know your name) I see that your mail is dated the 4th, but it is the 10th now and I just received this message at lunchtime! I check my mail each and every day and respond right away. I don't know what delayed its' delivery - but wanted you to know that I respond right away (usually within 24 hours) to all mail. You can count on me. My heart goes out to you and with you, I feel your pain and loss... You are still in what I think of as "The year of the ~Firsts~. That first year is so very difficult, for we face the first of each and every holiday or special days - without our loved one with us any longer. These special days hurt forevermore I think - but the first is the most acute. I am now into my third year of Erics' absence and I doubt that they will ever be the same all the rest of my life... I have not yet had to face the loss of my parents. I can only guess at the emptiness that their passing will leave and has left for you. Time... yes! It seemed to change for me too.... from that first day until the present one... For a very long time - and even now, I get spells of... losing my relativity to time at all - getting lost sometimes in that sense that time-life has stopped. At other times - it goes by in a blur which seems impossibly fast and barely noticed. Time relativity (or perhaps just the ~sense~ of it, for me, has NEVER been the same since then. My memory also changed very much. It seems as though I am a bit altered permanently in that I experience and think about what is going on with an extra-sense of "I wish Eric could ~know, see, feel~ this.... It is an odd preoccupation which isn't as acutely painful as at first - but remains strong and a bit distracting at times... It is good to share with others who are going through this lonely valley of the shadow of death where we are following so far behind our loved one who has gone on to their permanent eternal home and life there. Sometimes, as you said, it is just reassuring to us to know and see that others are going through the same strange behaviors and thoughts which accompany our loss and adjustment to life without our loved one. I am glad that you found that on my homepage and tribute/memorials of Eric and his life.... Please write again whenever you feel a need or desire. I hope that you will continue to feel welcome and somewhat comforted. Love and special hugs out to you...
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: Draw with me ddd@midco.net
Subject: Thank-You
I just want to cry, to think of all of the children that are put to death everyday. I am a member of Birth Right but I feel I am not doing enough to put a stop to killing babies.... If at any point in time you may need help let me know... Thank-you for your hard work... ~ Dianne in SD ~

Dear Dianne; You are most welcome. Thank you for being a part of doing what little any of us can do. I think we all feel pretty impotent - no matter how hard we try or long we work. In our community we have "The Pregnancy Center" which offers counsel and also, all help possible for those mothers who opt to give birth to the child. We obtain help for them with their needs before and after the birth. That is a wonderful thing to have in your community. There is probably one in yours too- and they will train you to volunteer in the counseling and assisting the services. We are very small here, but thankfully, there are no abortion clinics in the immediate area. I pray that you will find in your area, a way to reach out where you are. God bless and keep you always in all ways..
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: Janet Riedthaler podo@raex.com
Subject: Hi   ~   Hi there,,,, Don't know if you remember me or not,,,,I was sorting through my bookmarks today,,,and came across yours. I am podoimp,,,,,Sandy's next door neighbor,,, your page brought back so many memories,,,of fun times in the chat room,,, and of course of the special weekend we shared that summer a couple of years ago. I just wanted to say hi,,,,and how you doing? Hope all is well,,, I don't very often go into chat anymore,,,and when I do,,,,don't really know anyone there. Well,,,,just wanted you to know i was thinking of you this day,,,,,*s* take care ~ ~ ~ Janet aka podoimp

Well "DAaaaaaaa" Podimp!!!!
Well of course I remember you~!!! *RVBS!* So NICE to hear from you! Do you have a homepage up yet? ~ I don't chat at all anymore. Like you, I have checked it out now and then but it was so different that I just never did speak up and talk to the people there. It wasn't meaningful or family feeling at all. I never was much of one for just superficial conversations. That was why I liked our chatting - it was so "family" and interrelated. ~ I will always cherish the good of our get together there in Cleveland. I am engaged to be married - not sure of date because my divorce is taking a while! Probably in January or February. If anything comes up. I've attached a picture of the three of us. Have been praying about Sandy and her dad. She certainly has had a lot of trials and ordeals to face and deal with in the last year and a half! ~ Just able to be here for a short time at once, recovering from knee surgeries where they had to remove a badly shredded miniscus from a mishap with our new lawn-tractor... *frownz* ~ Write and tell me how things are going! Hope you and all of your family are well and happy. Love and hugs {{{{{{{Janet}}}}}}} from your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: Cherie Joyce cjoyce@neocomm.net
I am a 1996 graduate of Ferrum college. I received the web-site information about Eric from a Ferrum alumni letter. Eric was a well thought-of individual at Ferrum and I assure you that he is greatly remembered. This web site is a great contribution to Eric. May God bless you and your family.   ~   CHERIE LEWIS

Dear Cherie;
How nice to hear from you. The most special letters of all are those from his friends and schoolmates. It lets me know that he is still a memory and part of your life. Eric was a faithful and thoughtful friend to all. I hope that his life made a difference in yours and that you will continue to remember the special person he was. He would have been humble and amazed by the people who have been touched by his life and his work in the memorial pages, even this long after his brief journey with us has ended. His spirit does live on. Thank you for writing to me. There will be more of his writings posted in time... I sometimes have to walk away from that task when I find it a bit overwhelming with thoughts of "What might have been" I try to stay in touch with my gratitude of the 23years that WERE instead of those that won't be. I hope that life has been good for you and that you are doing well in whatever you chose to do. {{{{{{{Cherie}}}}}}}
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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Date: Sun, 15 Nov 1998 17:01:42
From: arfriend
Subject: Homepage
I really like your homepages and especially was touched by the letter for pro-life! Take care! ~ Robin Friend

Subject: Re: Homepage
To: arfriend
Dear Robin; Thank you for visiting and writing. I am three weeks behind in the guestbook entries due to surgery and an unfortunate turn of events which have me confined to a bed and wheelchair until March. This has made it most difficult to keep up. The last few days though, I have been able to spent two sessions a day here and am trying to catch up.
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: STLREALTOR@aol.com
Dear Nina, I'm not sure how I stumbled upon your website while searching for a cure for my exzema (a skin disease).....First read the story about your little "Buffy". It brought a tear to my eye and then trickled down my face, as I thought to myself of my own little one, Pookie, a 2 yr old 3lb. Yorkshire Terrior. She is the light of my life, and the thought of losing her---well, I can't even describe how I will feel when that day arrives. I then went on to read about your son, Eric. How terribly sad. You must be a very stong woman, and I applaud your courage to pick up the shattered pieces and move on with your life in such a productive manner. Your stories moved me, and I thank you for reminding me how short life can be, and how we should never be too busy to thank God for our blessings, or tell a loved one how much they truly mean to us.   ~   Sincerely, Rob in St. Louis

Subject: Re: (no subject)
Dear Rob; It always blesses and strengthens me when a new friend finds their way to my homepage and is blessed and the scripture is fulfilled again and again. My greatest comfort is in seeing that what Satan would use for evil, God uses for good... namely, the pain of losing and living without, Eric. Strange, wasn't it? That I chose that picture of Eric holding Buffy there in "his" chair in my room. The family usually thought of it as "Erics' chair" because he was there more than any other place in our home except his own room. When Buffy left me on the exact day of the one-year anniversary of Erics' death - I thought it was the worst possible day it could happen for I was so overwhelmed all over again. Later, though, I realized that it was the best and not the worst! For I will grieve over that particular day as long as I live. And when it comes each year... both griefs are combined into one day and not two. Not a small blessing, to be sure for I have experienced the anniversary only twice so far and can say that it is a very dark time. It begins for me weeks before April first, as I remember his last visit home and the days between and marvel at the innocent happiness we all existed in at the time just before, when we were making all of our great "graduation week" plans. Also, Rob, I, (having been influenced by fairy tales and by scriptures which counsel us to appreciate our days because we don't know when "the hour" and loss will come), ~ I am the sort who unfailingly stands at the door and watches and waves until the person or persons leaving are out of sight. No one leaves without hugs to take my love with them in parting embraces. And those moments of embrace are always a prayer of gratitude of all they mean to me. So I have no regrets or dark taint of "missed or foregone opportunities", for we cherished each moment and occasion. Thank you for writing to me. It is a bright spot along the way and I felt good at hearing from you.
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: Ohboy23381@aol.com
Subject: Hi
Just read your journal and as I sit here crying, I do not know what to say.......for you see I am getting ready to loose my very best friend also and I do not know what brought me to your site, the "Good LORD" I think...... My name is linda and I am from NC. your journal hits so close to home. My Heart! I hope you do not mind me writing to you and do please look over the mis- spelled words and the puncation. For at this time, it does not matter, I just need a friend, who understands what I am getting ready to experience........and it seems as though you fit that spot to the dot.............. My Chewbacca is 22 years old. I got him as a puppy and I bottle fed him. He was only 5 days old. So he has been with me for a long long time. He has been with me through many trials and hurts, he has been with me through my bout with Leukemia and my bone marrow transplant, and with my kids and he is with us to this day. But he is slipping away just a little more each day. He still gets around slow just as your Buffey I carry him outside to pottie and have to help him in and out the door.. I can never move anything for you see he is completely blind and Deaf now....H e only has his nose and he sniffs for me everywhere. He knows when I leave the room and he gets up stiffly and slowly he comes looking for me. You know and that little stump of a tail just a wagging. Oh dear...this breaks my heart and I am crying again. I guess I will let you go, I hope again that you do not mind me talking to you for just a few minutes, and You know what? This song is my favorite..and it fits perfectly. Thank you so much.
Linda Johnson ~

My very dear Linda;
How glad I am that by whatever means, you found me and that you have been blessed by our meeting. Oh, how well I remember the agony of watching Buffy that last week! Buffy was also blind for the last four years of her life. She'd had Glaucoma since1992 and in six months it blinded her entriely in spite of the mediations we tried. Once she went blind altogether - we had surgery performed on the eyes in which they injected a substance which stopped the pressure build-up which in turn ended the pressure-discomfort which also accompanies the Glaucoma. I remember how difficult it was in those first months when we all had to adjust ourselves and develope that radar-like awareness that we could see her but she could not see us... The fact that she was the same color as our kitchen linoleum did not help any either! Being so small (a twelve pound miniature daschund)... we all did our share of stumbling around the moving obstacle-course she created for us at times at times.... I seldom left Buffy at all once she became blind... But the moment I stepped out of the house or went to the basement or whatever - - even if only for a few minutes - when I would return, she would be in my closet curled up in my dirty clothes or right on top of my moccasins if she failed to get the basket turned on its' side to climb into! She was that attached to me. Oh, how I ache for you and for the agony of that parting which is coming to you now. Not sure how you came to the site, I am sending you another link (2) just in case you haven't been there.... 
Rainbow Bridge ~ is a  very special place!   and
There you will find many others who know and understand the loss you are facing. Being in Virginia - we are not far apart, really. I hope that you will write again and share with me - any thoughts and feelings which you may find solace in sharing. I really care, Linda. I am here and will respond as soon as I hear from you. I'm having surgery again on Tuesday - so might miss a day or two - but my laptop also goes on line and I can do mail from there if I choose. My best to you and I will hold you in prayer. Please let me know how you both are doing. I embrace you with Christian love....   Yours because I'm His... Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: Gerleslie@aol.com
Subject: hello  ~  Just wanted to stop and say hello. No one is in my normal chat room so I wanted to say hello to you. Have a good day! ~ Leslie

Well, Hello Leslie. *S*
Yours because I'm His, ~ your GYPSY, (Nina)

Hello. Who are you and where did you come from. Leslie

Hello again Leslie. I am Nina (aka Gypsy). I came from my mother and was born in Chicago. *grin* ~ From your GYPSY, (Nina)

A very special gypsy

Morning! Thank you, Leslie. *smiling* ~~wave~~~~

Morning to you also except it's really almost noon here. 
Have a good day! ~ Leslie

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From: Nita Barber sevnstep@flash.net
Subject: Thank you
Hi Nina, Your pages filled with so many thoughts I have had these last two years, have been so comforting. I lost my mate of 44 years last year and my wounds are still so raw. Actually within 90 days, I lost an 8 year old grandchild, my mother and then my husband. You have helped me. I share your pain. I am sorry you do not have Eric with you right this minute. I am sending you a hug......do you feel it? It's there, warm as ever. ~ Neata

Hello Dear One; So sorry to hear of your triple-loss. You must be quite overwhelmed with it all! Losing each different type of relationship is difficult enough - but to lose three so close together... and one of them being your life-mate- My heart goes out to you and I hope that you can feel me hugging you back. The first year is so painful as each holiday comes and the loved one is absent for all those firsts without them.... But the heart does go on and the love in your heart is tribute and memorial of their immortality in eternity. Write any time you may want to talk or share. I care, I really do! I am thankful that you found some measure of solace and strength with us here.    ~ {{{{{{{Neata}}}}}}}
Yours because I'm His, your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "Nate Hathaway" nater55@hotmail.com
Subject: HELLO   ~   Hi, Hi friend, how is life treating you right now. It's O.k. So how did you get to make your web page. IT IS GREAT, i love the music and everything.. Well I liked your stories and everything. So if you would e-mail me some time. O.K    Write me at
nater55@hotmail.com I hopes this comes through

Hello Nate; Thank you for ~~waving~~~~ to us when you came to visit our URL. It is always nice to hear from visitors. I am in-between surgeries right now and a bit slow at responding to and posting the guestbook. Hope your holidays are mellow and filled with friendship and family.
Yours because I'm His, ~ your GYPSY, (Nina)

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Date: Tue, 8 Dec 1998 16:20:24 -0800
Ohboy23381@aol.com ~ Subject: Checking on you
Hello Linda; I was thinking about you for a few days now and so I thought I would write to you and check on how things were going with you. I don't know if Chewbacca is still with you? I know how difficult it must be for you whether he is or is not still with you.... Watching a life come slowly to an end is difficult in its' own way... it tears you between wanting them to go and wanting to hold on... between mercy and clinging.... My last surgery turned into a second one and now I am confined to bed until March - a last opportunity to avoid replacing both knees as scheduled in March. Enuff about that... God is good and uses all things for good - and although it took me a few days to adjust my "attitude" and accept the "90 day sentence"... God also answered my prayers to that end.... I am now using the time-out to upgrade and learn the 98 versions of MS Office, Frontpage and Windows 98. I'm also watching old movies (which I have always had a fondness but little time for) and some new ones too... (Like PAULIE... that adorable talking parrot!) Please let me know how you are doing... okay?
Love and hugs, Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

Date: Tue, 8 Dec 1998 23:24:32 EST
Hi Nina, So glad to hear from you! I wanted to write earlier but knew you had a lot upon you and I thought it to be better to wait, till I heard from you. I am glad the first surgery went well, and I am sorry you had to have a second and now bed-ridden for a while. But you are right, The Good Lord knows best. I know this first hand you know. Very FIRST HAND!!!!!!!!! Thanks for caring abouot Chewbacca. He is still with me. He is getting around slower every day, and just hunts and hunts for me, when he feels that I am not near. It breaks my heart so much you know.! i do not even want to go out anymore, afraid of what I might find when I return. I know, I know, when it is time, he will go home...But that does not help much. I just do not want him to suffer and leave by himself. This would break my heart worse, knowing that he was suffering during the last moments. AM I making any sense at all. ???? He was there for me during my Bone Marrow Transplant and I feel as though I need to be here for him...I am having some people thinking I am crazy and just plum stupid for feeling this way, But Nina...He is a part of me, and I do not want him to die. I guess , NO, I know all of us have to and I know that he is so old and fragile.....but I love him so much. I think it hurts more because i know that I can do nothing for him. you know? This is killing me.I cry,alot....I mean a lot.! When someone talks about it is time for him, he is old and he has had a very good life and I have had him longer
than most, I cannot take it.......I just can't......... Oh I am so sorry, my mind and thoughts are racing and I am mis-spelling and blubbering all over the place. I do not mean to cry and boo-hoo on your shoulder, but I do appreciate it. Please keep in touch and let me know how you are doing? Are you at home, or still in the hospital? Where did you say your home was....? I cannot get a profile for you? So tell me about yourself, that is when you have the spare time! ~ lol ~ I will answer as soon as possible. I run a daycare here in my home and somethines it is late when I check my mail, but I will answer. OK. Be good and please get well soon and feel better. I know all about being confined.when I had my transplant...I was in the hospitala from August til Dec.and when I finally got to come home, I had to stay in for 3 months..I willmtell you all about it sometimes. But the Good LORD needed me some more you know........ and Here I am!
Love and Hugs ~ Take care ~ Linda

Hello Linda; Last Thursday when I went in to have the stitches out - my Orthopedic surgeon told me that the inflammation present was so persistent and the knees and bone spurs so bad that the only hope I have of not having both knees replaced with new ones in March (it is already scheduled for then)- is to remain in bed until at least the middle of February when he will check them again before we commit to the replacement surgeries which he hopes to postpone for at least ten years if we can. He says that I am too young (at 55!) and far too active to do that right now because it will mean repeated surgeries and replacements far too many times. It is far too complicated to go into all right now - but basically, I have a genetic dysfunction of joint metabolism which began destroying my joints from the day I first began to walk. In the joints - lactic acid, which is generated when we move our joints, is not normally excreted and the crystals of it and inflammation it produces, destroy the cartilage of the joints all through the body. We had hoped that the knees would not retain so much of it- but the surgery which leaves the bone surfaces all raw - and the new situation with both meniscus removed - is very severe at this point and he broke the news to me that I must not walk at all except the most essential (bathroom) activity... anything else will have to be in a wheel chair- but my best chances are to avoid all such provocation and we will hope that the few months respite will allow my body to heal and "quiet down". I was not expecting that news at all. At first I was stunned and tears sprang to my eyes... but now I have allowed my Lord to deal with me and I am adjusting to the strict confinement I face. I am working on my laptop now and will be writing a lot. I am rather behind in that anyway. I began today. I am three weeks behind in posting the guestbook messages (though I have kept up with the mail and ministry of the grief-support communications. Now - for what you are going through with Chewbacca. I well remember the exact same travail in the last two years with Buffy and her failing heart. As I shared with you before, she had glaucoma and began losing her vision in 1993 and in a few years, she was entirely blind. Her glaucoma also effected her hearing which grew quite profound.... I would speak to her while holding her close to my mouth while speaking right at her ear. I knew she could hear me then and her tail would always wag in response. As her world grew smaller and smaller with the loss of those senses, our bond grew in her dependence. Like you, I also began to limit my time out and away from her. We kept the air conditioner on even when we would not have wanted it for ourselves. I picked her up and took her wherever I went (she weighed between 11 and 12 pounds at all times. Linda, as I read your words, I relived that sorrowful time in my own experience. I feel for you. I even remember how some of my friends and family began to criticize me for the devotion which grew as she needed me more and her ending came ever nearer and I saw her weakening even as she slept most of the time. I care... I really do. I understand as only one who has walked in that same path of anguish and soulmate-bond with another of Gods' creations.....can. I think it is a taste of what it must be like for the Holy Spirit to walk with us.... We are tempered by our love of anything.... It is His way with us. So I say, "Amen" and rely on Him to provide daily strength as our need grows. It is late and I need to sleep now - so I will leave you with this and hope that it comforts and reassures you. I hope that you can feel my compassionate embrace as I hold you in my spirit and pray for you. I have a saying of my own - "Prayer is not just something you do - it is something you ARE." I am praying for you. I will be here for you. The one good thing about this kind of letting go is that by the time the hour arrives, we are willing to surrender our beloved to the merciful deliverance death brings. Be strong against any who criticize you and ask that it they do not wish to support and comfort you - that they at least refrain from making it even more difficult. If they will not grant you that - you would do well to keep them out of your life altogether - they are not good for you and their selfishness will only bring harm into your life.... Re - my profile is on the URL here... If you check it out and still have any unanswered questions - you have only to ask. *S*
About me  Here is a prayer I wrote that may bring you comfort and help you to feel less alone as you travail...  God blesses and is keeping you always....Yours because I'm His ~ Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: Patsy Mahs pmahs@bellsouth.net
Subject: Sending Love
Hi Nina: What a beautiful site. I'm not sure how I happened to find you (not yet very computer literate), but what a blessing it was. Your messages show what a wonderful heart you have, and though you have suffered much you will triumph. I can feel your grief, since I too have been there. My son was 18 years old, and lost his life in a car accident. That was on Dec. 29, 1979. Died on Jan. 1, 1980. I thought sure my life would end for I no longer had a reason to live, but live I did. Although I can no longer see him in person, I feel his presence often and he has shown me that death is not the end but only the beginning. I send you love and compassion. It would be wonderful to communicate with you, either at this site or through private e-mail. Sincerely, Patsy

Hello Patsy; Thank you for sharing with me. I appreciate hearing from you. It seems to me that people who share loss of a child as we have - share a special bond of experience and strength drawn from sharing. The more similarity, the closer the bond seems to be. So we have a sisterhood in losing our sons in automobile accidents.... I don't believe the grief will ever end, but it changes us forever and when it is God who is the potter with the clay of us - good will come of it. Do you have other children? I am sure that this must be a melancholy time for you. I think that suffering the loss at a holiday time forever alters our relationship to that calendar reminder. Eric was killed April first, and when Jeanne called to tell Erics' best friend, Jon, what had happened.... He thought that someone was playing an April Fools day prank. *sad* I suppose that Christmas and especially New Years day must be an even greater sadness for you, seeing that it is such an around-the-world traditional for families to "go home" and be together. As time goes on (only 2 years and 8 months in my case, at this time)... I find that Eric is even more a part of me than before - there is a different and special way of all experiences where I seem to look through Erics' and my own eyes at everything, everywhere, all the time. It isn't a bad feeling.... I am comfortable with it now... kind of like he is with me. Kind of like when I was pregnant with each of my three children.... I always felt their presence like I do Erics' now - a part of me, but still their own selves and I would talk to them all those months that they were unborn..... I love the theme song from the TITANIC movie. After his best friend, Jon, took me to that movie last year - it became sort of my "Eric-song"... His heart truly does live on. A beautiful song and a beautiful feeling. I would like to hear more about your son... his name... likes and dislikes... activities... etc. etc. How sad it must have been to live through those 4 days! Eric was killed instantly. If you would like to write privately - send to (I usually post to the page the mail that comes here). gypsy@shentel.net I embrace you with loving warm hug {{{{{{{Patsy}}}}}}} and will look forward to our sharing more. Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: Lisa Dulin ravenswood@jhu.edu
Subject: Thank you.
Thank you for this site. Thank you. I can only say that I don't know what I would do if I were ever in your place. I'm only nineteen years old, but during the last two years of my high school career, six of my friends died -- out of a high school of only four hundred students, that is a lot. One from leukemia, one from unknown causes, and four from car accidents. This is my first year at college, and already three people have been killed as a result of car accidents. This has left me with an ever increasing fear that people important to me will be killed by vehicles. Just Friday, my very closest friend and an old boyfriend of mine drove home (an hour and a half away) after not sleeping for two nights because of finals. I believe he's ok, though I haven't heard from him. But no news is good news. I sometimes weep, about Jordan, Ricky, Jason, and Jami. As did your site. Thanks again. Now, this isn't advertisement, but I did write a webpage with a story on it that I dedicated to Jordan, Jason, and Ricky, who died in the same car accident. that should be it. if not then go to and explore. You should follow the link "Into Blue" and then the libram of the world. it's called come play. Love, Lisa ~ Thanks again.

Dear Lisa; Thank you so much for your mail. I enjoyed it. I can see clearly that you are a very deep, very caring young woman. *smiling* I am glad that you found our site. Erics' death was so very tragic and yet - he would not have had it any other way... He would not have wanted to live with an alternate outcome such as having one of the two friends who were with him, being a fatality in stead of him. His choice, were he given one, would have been the one to die. I think when there is no driver error and the circumstances are so bizarre as those which took Eric from us, it is even more difficult to accept and as in your concern for your loved ones - it increases our anxiety, knowing how fragile life is and how precarious it is to travel with even the most skillful and experienced driver. In fact, when Eric went to driving school, he opted for the additional "defensive driving" course too. As he would say it - he "aced the entire course" We also live in a mountainous, country road environment and Eric was as skilled as any driver I have ever known in my 55 years of life! There simply was no way to avoid it at all except that someone who had seen the insulation laying alongside of the road earlier that day, might have stopped and secured or removed it to prevent the outcome which cost Erics' life... OR - that the homeowner might (and should) have removed the excess and unused material from his back yard in those months that it lay there unsecured and waiting for that fateful night. That leaves all of us with the frightening reality that we are so very vulnerable to the sudden unexpected event which nothing at all, on the drivers' part, could have altered. If you saw the pictures, Lisa, not far beyond the tree was an occupied trailer home and had the tree not been there that family inside it would have surely been harmed or killed. So, you are validated in your concern for friends and family, for the reality is that often, (far too often) - those deaths in vehicles are victimizations of chance and circumstance beyond driver skills or safety devices. Since you have been unfortunate enough have experienced an inordinate number of vehicular deaths to people in your life, your over concern in entirely subjective and with your loving, caring spirit, your discomfort will likely be with you always.   ~   It is so hard for those of us left behind, to understand or accept the loss of promising young lives! Yet - I found there is some measure of comfort in the fact that these souls also escaped a lot of the usual hardships and trials we all face along our journey through a lifespan. Thank you again, Lisa. *smiling gently* I will visit your writing as soon as I can. *S*
Bye for now dear Lisa. ~ Hugs and love, Nina

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From: "Julie Brown" julb@cyberhighway.net
Subject: eric's site
Thank you for a wonderful site. I have been trying to find a place of comfort for my friends after I am gone. I will bookmark your site so when they review my belongings they will find you. Thank you

Hello Julie; ~ So very sorry that you are having to deal with such a devastating and cruel illness with little to no hope(?) of recovery.... I have never personally known anyone (we live in a small town in the Shennandoah valley) who has your illness - but our area is a high-cancer-rate area and I have dealt a lot with that cruel affliction. SOME types are rather merciful in the way that they end life - some are even relatively painless and swift - but OH~ those that are relentless and pain filled! Having been in business "Foods for Body & Soul" for twenty years now, and also an Herbologist (Masters degree in this field) - I have been more involved with the process of death and dying than anyone would otherwise be exposed to in everyday-life. How sad I am. . Are you sure that it is terminal at this point in time? Haven't they been making progress in new medical treatments? I would like to share your journey if you would like that. I care, I really do, and offer it to you in a supportive relationship if you would like me to do so. I hope that you are surrounded with friends and family and that this will be a happy and fulfilling holiday in the days immediately ahead. I like your "backyard"! *S* Living in the valley here, we are always surrounded on every side with the Blue-Ridge mountain range. I am engaged to be married and have been wrestling with the idea of moving to Canada when we marry. Their social system for care and support of medical and living needs of the elderly is so very much better than ours here in the states. But I feel "One" with this valley and do not know if I could be transplanted at 55! The page mail which comes here is guestbook entry material - but many people do not want to be open in that. I will refrain from publishing this message unless you want me to. I respect your privacy. If you would like to be friends and communicate, send personal mail to: gypsy@shentel
Love and hugs for you Julie....
Yours because I'm His... Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "jan sopshier" stasop@xtn.net
Subject: hello: A friend sent your homepage to me. Just wanted to let you know how touched I was after reading it. For I too lost a family member in a tragic car accident. The father of my two girls passed away almost 11 years ago. I was left alone to raise 2 children. They were 6 and 13 at the time. I have been very fortunate because everyone said I would have a hard time raising my daughters on my own. Now they are 16 and 24 years old. The oldest is a successful restaurant owner which she bought at the age of 21. The youngest is a junior in high school where she participates in school activities. Both girls are very outgoing and everyone in the community tells me what wonderful girls they are. I never did remarry and not a day goes by without me thinking of what could have been. It probably never gets better even though meaningful friends will tell you different. I just had to send you a little message. Take care. jan

Hello Jan; Thank you for writing to me and sharing. I understand about the daily thoughts of your absent loved one... And I agree with you that the grief will always be a daily part of our life as long as the love lives on in our heart. It sounds as though you have been a wonderful mother. Another clear example of God using al eve....) Hope to hear from you again. l things for good in our lives. Write again if you like.... I would like to know more about your story. Short response today - Christmas eve being upon us. Brandi is all excited and has picked out her one gift to open (our family opens one gift on Christmas Eve)
Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "Dick Buckner" rgb@rgbuckner.com
Subject: your page
I stumbled onto your page and I have been very touched by Eric's memorial here. I found myself reading your letter-poem "My Dear Son, Eric" with tears streaming down my my cheeks. You see, I lost my son Michael (33) in a car crash on May 15th this year. This is our first Christmas without "Mikey" and his large family miss him terribly. Many of us take comfort in the Lord and know that we will spend eternity with Mike, but we are still selfish enough to feel sorry that we don't have him here wirh us now. I just wanted to let you know your tribute to your son has helped me release some of my own grief today - Christmas 1998. God Bless you and your family and Merry Christmas.
Richard Buckner ~ Post Falls, Idaho

Hello Richard; Thank you for sharing with me. Those who sign in and let me know they were here and that they were blessed in sharing, mean so very much to me. It is an affirmation of the calling I obey in reaching out to share, comfort and strengthen others like you and I who have lost loved ones. I remember that in the earliest days, the sharing that meant the most to me were with those who had similar circumstances and I felt they understood as no others possibly could. It is a sad bond, but also, a wonderfully beneficial one. You are in your `year of the firsts' as I think of it. That is the most difficult, of course. I am now into the third and have found that although I am slowly adjusting to my world without Eric, the pain and longing are a permanent part of my life and my `self'. We are forever changed in all ways... and yet - the tempering of the mourning changes us in good ways too.... Hope you will visit more within the pages of our cyber-home... and please write if you feel the need to share or be strengthened or comforted as you walk the darkened path in the shadow of death....
Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "Nickolas & Denise Payovich" payovich@ptialaska.net
Subject: Merry Christmas
Thank you for the wonderful Christmas Prayer. I printed it and said it before our Christmas dinner. God Bless and Happy Holidays!
From: The Payovich's Nickolas & Denise
Brooke/Morgan/Tyler & a Dog Named Tanner

Hello, I am blessed by your sharing that with me! *smile* Thank you!
Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: areuter areuter@usit.net
Subject: A Very Special You
Hi Dear Nina, That is such a wonderful Christmas message and one that holds true throughout the entire year. I wish for you the Joy and Peace of this Wonderful Season. May we always remember the true meaning and and find all that GOD has planned for us. Not our will but HIS be done.
I too have spent many hours in your different areas and know the love that is there. It is felt by everyone who reads your works. And no... please, never stop writing. The lost to all of us would be irreplaceable.
Love you dear, Ann

Subject: Re: A Very Special You
Thanks Dear One! Gee - I am going to get spoiled if this is a taste of what 1999 will be like! *Rvbg* When are you going to catch me up on you! *G* We have been declared a national disaster and the storm isn't even here yet - this is a first.. I don't think I've ever heard of that happening before! *YIKES!* Am not allowed to walk at all right now - until February 18. How is your family? Are you still doing medical reports for insurance claims? I have been wanting to try chatting - but it is a major task to keep up with the grief support ministry from the URL.... It is a very gratifying and healing thing for me as well. <---> Thank you for the kind and loving words, Ann. *tight hug* ~ Love and hugs, `sis', Nina

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From: MKOZZ@aol.com
Subject: Thanks!
Thank you for your site - A friend just sent it to me. This reminds me of how we must remember what we do each day - to remember our Christian values - sometimes we are too busy... we forget He died on the cross for us and will return to us someday - Are we ready?!?! My heart goes out to you with your loss - we have lost an 18 year old in this area this month to an auto accident also. Their faith in Jesus is what is helping the parents and brothers through this time and the days ahead. Thanks again for your site.((((( )))))

Subject: Re: Thanks!
Hello; Thank you for letting us know you were visiting and appreciated our site. You might, in light of what you said, also like to visit these to pages (our site is so large that it cannot be done in one visit....) *s*. If your friends who lost their son have a computer, I hope that they might benefit from the grief support in the pages of our guestbooks too.... (there are many archives now) - they are more than the usual guest-book fare and there is much sharing of similar experiences in mourning loved ones gone ahead of us. I wrote this last year and published it on Thanksgiving day 1997. You might like it also... Twas The Night Jesus Came   ~  
Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "Jon E. Waters" jonnie@ix.netcom.com
Subject: Amen!
Praise God, Praise God, Praise God! I have gone to site many times and because of your inspiration, I have decided to attempt one. The only thing I have not been able to do, is get sound like you do. I have several Web Publishers, Front Page, Microsoft Web Publisher, Netscape Communicator, etc.. May I inquire how you got your "music" onto your page? How long did it take you to learn how to do it? I have been able to "send" the pages but they never have "sound" even when I make them in Front Page and tell it to put a background sound! Can you tell me what I'm doing wrong or perhaps a manual that will tell me! My sister also goes to your site a lot.
junebug@bellsounth.net is her name. Again, I really like your site.! God Bless! Jon

Subject: Re: Amen!   ~   Hello Jon; The easiest way for you to deal with the music is to first go to CRESCENDO site - you can get there easily by right clicking the player at the bottom of my pages there and click to go straight there. Once you download CRESCENDO, there will be directions on how to use it. If you need help or have questions, they are very thorough and there are links to their FAQ section and other helps online. Personally, with such a vast number of files in my site - I use one separate folder for images and one for midis. If you have a site up now - please send link for me? I would like to visit. God bless you...
Yours because I'm His, Nina

Subject: Thanks!
Thank you, thank you, thank you.... No, I do not have the site up and ready yet. As soon as I do, you will be the first to know! I love & appreciate you in Jesus' Name. Jon

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Subject: A rose for Buffy..
Dear Nina: The subject of this letter usually reads 'Special Delivery from Rainbow Bridge' and the note is written by Missy the Bridgekid, but after spending the whole day with you, Buffy, and Eric, I wanted to write this one myself. What a beautiful son you have...yes, I said 'have'... in Eric. He has sent you messages upon messages, you know.... every time you find something from Eric, it's a message from him to you. You don't really think that all those accidents with the balloons were accidental, do you? They weren't, Nina... your son was letting you know that he was right beside you. And your little Buffy.... what a sweetheart... and that's why this note is usually written by Missy the Bridgekid. She gives her very special rose to other bridgekids and she led me to your Buffy. If you like Missy's rose, please put it on Buffy's page and link it to That's where you will find Missy the Bridgekid, but it takes a bit to download. Let me know when you have the link in place and Buffy will be placed in Missy's rose garden, so others can find their way here, too. I can feel the love pouring from your pages, and you were given a very special gift .... it was Eric and Buffy's blanket. You will find in Missy's Story that we have something in common, and that is the gift of a blanket. And should you keep writing? Of course you should.... never a doubt. Bless your heart.... you are very much loved, you know... and maybe I can answer a question for you. The reason why our loved ones in Heaven can see us and we can't see them.... well, they are already there, and if all of us could see, there wouldn't be any of us doing our learning and teaching on earth. Do you understand what I am saying to you? I'm attaching Missy's Special Rose for Buffy... we would feel very honored if you would accept it. Eric visits Rainbow Bridge often and all of the bridgekids are very much loved by him.
Love and Light, Mattie

Subject: Re: A rose for Buffy..
My dear Mattie; Hello *welcome-new-friend-hug*. Thank you so much for visiting with me on URL. And for sharing your site and your thoughts & feelings with me. Am confined for a while and have been enjoying surfing a lot more than my usual time! *S* Your site is beautiful .... almost as beautiful as your story! Was that the only page you have? I enjoyed it immensely. I noted Denim and diamonds in your address... I have visited pages named Denim & Pearls and also Denim & Lace.... So wondered if you might have another page? We all know, the moment we open our hearts to love man or `beast'- sorrow will certainly come of it as surely as the joy and pleasure. So when we commit ourselves to loving, we also subject ourselves to suffer... We now have a Chihuahua... his name is ChiCho. He came to us through our veterinarian. Buffys' story (and mine about her dying on the day Eric had died exactly one year later) was heard by a woman who works with the Chihuaua rescue-league in our area. She contacted me and asked if we would take in one of her `charges'. I had absolutely NO desire for that breed of dog - ever... in fact - he was one of last types I would choose. All of our friends warned - "You don't want one of those dog... They aren't cuddly at all! They are nervous and temperamental and don't get along well with children!" They couldn't have been more wrong! He is everything I could have wanted and more. I remember Susan trying to convince me and my resistance and then she said she would bring him to us that certain that we were the right family for him and that he was the right dog for us. She was RIGHT! *big-grin* Your award and letter were a beautiful way to start 1999. Thank you so very much! I will post the award as soon as I can manage a session at our main computer... right now I'm using its' "little brother" (my SONY laptop). Our Buffy was blinded by glaucoma. In the picture of Brandi, Buffy and myself, you can see that.... but as the blindness came gradually, she adjusted and just went right on as though she could see. We were together for several years after her blindness ~ in which we became even closer when she lost most of her hearing along with her sight (the pressure sometimes does that to glaucoma sufferers) In 1993 when the vet began to treat the glaucoma... the close bond which we already had (Buffy and I) - grew even deeper. I seldom left her for any length of time, for she could not endure separation from me. Two years before she died, the glaucoma was no longer responding to the medications and she had eye-surgery where a new technique was used to withdraw some of the orbs fluid and replace it with Gentian which would stop the swelling and pressure-discomfort... She was, by that time, totally blind anyway. This allowed her to not suffer the pressure and pain any more. That was a great and merciful intervention. Buffy was a trooper, remarkable in every way. My special angel! Every relationship of love and companionship is special in its' own way - but I believe that Buffy was the closest animal-soulmate (to me) that ever was or will be in my life. I always adopt dogs which need a home... usually from a shelter.
The day Buffy, Eric and I first met,*to read this portion of Buffys' ~story~ - go here..... Buffys'  First Days
I don't usually send such lengthy responses, Mattie, but feeling the kindred- spirit in you, of one who knows as I do, that our `little ones' are actually very special angels (I believe)- given to us for reasons we will only fully understand when we enter into our life-everlasting, I wanted to share Buffys' beginnings as well as the ending which you already know and shared so compassionately. Thank you again for the lovely AWARD and I will notify you as soon as I get it up. I will also send you our own AWARD for your page now that I have visited. *S* I don't have those files here on the laptop.
Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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"COLIN HUTTON" coldet@itec.co.za
Subject: A Mother's Prayer
I'm looking for a kareoke file for this song. Can you help

Sorry Colin, have no idea what you are asking for - and have no idea at all about kareoke. The Mothers' Prayer was written by me and was never a song.... I guess I don't understand the question OR know the answer... sorry....
Yours because I'm His ~ Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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From: "Dave Miller" drmiller@oxford.net
hello i really love your page and i love the cross pick you gave to love for jesus chantele

Thank you for sharing your feelings re:website. Sweet of you.
Yours because I'm His ~ Your GYPSY, (Nina)

Sun, 10 Jan 1999 12:08:02 chany47@hotmail.com
hello; your page was awesome and thanks for writing back well it's good that some ppl can still keep the faith through this hole millenium thing ~ y/f ~ chantele

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From: Sally McLean saljay@netspace.net.au
Subject: Just to offer love
Dear Nina, I was truly touched by what I have read here on your site - and all I can do is extend to you a caring gesture and let you know that you have touched my heart. Due to your courage in sharing your losses with the world, people have responded with warmth, love and support, and that is one of the greatest gifts we can give and receive as human beings. I am inspired by your healing - by your writing and by your own capacity to love and care. Take care and bless you.
Sally McLean ~ http://members.xoom.com/flareflair 

Subject: Re: Just to offer love
Dear Sally; Thank you so very much for your love, affirmation and support. I cherish every visitor-message sent to me. Sometimes the courage and inspiration to continue with the ministry of reaching out in this way, wanes a bit. It is sometimes quite heavy a responsibility to communicate with so many who suffer privately. Messages like yours which remind me and "center" me anew by stating for me their recognition and confirmation of my commitment and the fact that it is blessing others in such a variety of ways. Thank you for blessing me today,
Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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Dear Ms. Baker, Although I will have to go back and reread, and finish the entire website, I just read your sons' writing. . I feel that it has deep meanings towards everyones' own lives, If only each of us will realize it.. I do not know if you will get this letter , mainly due to the # of years prior to this letter. Although I have not lost a child or a spouse, I have lost my parents and a brother to their future lives, as I believe in life after death. Your son was young when he passed on, so was my brother when he left this world. I guess that you believe in God, He has a time and place and manner through which we are to leave this portion of our lives and enter into our next lives. My condolences and prayers of love

Hello Friend, Our website was born of my love for and loss of Eric. It was a commitment (on my part) to have his work read (which was his desire,  which you can read here;  It sounds as though you might have read his 1992 English assignment of writing an autobiography? As time has gone on, the site became a sort of ministry to others who suffer grief or alienation from God. In that, it has been my own healing and source of comfort also. Thank you for writing to share with me your thoughts about Erics' poetry. I deeply appreciate all who contact me.
Yours because I'm His, Your GYPSY, (Nina)

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Subject: Your Web Site
What a beautiful page...I'm so glad I stumbled on it this morning... I am sending you a special award for your page...please link it back to my rainbow page at:
http://members.aol.com/LacyBunny2/rainbow.html Also, I would like to apply for your beautiful Blue Mountain Award...this award is for Annah's website, which I now maintain for her family...we are still adding to her site, and as she is starting to receive awards, I guess I better set her up an awards page!!! Her site, to me, is probably one of the most beautiful and inspirational pages on the web...and when I saw your web site, I thought, Annah would love this...she loved the mountains so much.... Please visit her site...it will bless you, and please share her link with others... http://members.aol.com/LacyBunny3/annahsheaven.html
Thank you and have a wonderful day... your friend, Julie

I responded to Julie and thanked her for sending me to Annahs' site and for the award and sent the one she desired for Annahs' page. Unfortunately - a friend tried to update this page for me and ~ALAS !, lost some of the data, including the response e-mail from me and some other guestbook entries are now forever resident in that cyber-netherland somewhere - but not here *s-o-r-r-y!* We apologize. Now no one wants to help out! *teeheehee* - out of fear and dread - so I will just have to limp along until my doctor says I'm free to be here again! (don't tell him I'm here now! I still have three+ weeks to go before allowed out of bed! *giggle* I do not recomend disobeying orders - and I try not to - but today I had an appointment with second specialist and on my way through the house and back to bed from that trip - I'm stopping here just to see if I could somehow find that lost data..... Now it's back to my bedroom island....

Later ~ Hello from a rainy {at last!} Shenandoah Valley! Please, Julie..... I still have not gotten the link to work to your site I used the one you asked me to use.  Do you want me to use another? http://www.user.shentel.net/nbaker/awards/awrds4.htm
And - not sure if you sent me an award from Annahs' page as well? I lost some of my e-mail in transferring it to the main computer.... *sob, sniffle!* Also - wonderfing how her husband is doing now? I was hoping to learn more about him? You sent me other URLS - do you want to choose one which will work and link somewhere to yours? Maybe a "back door" will work? It seems that your AOL is not letting me in? I do get into Annahs' (which I love).
Love and hugs {{{Julie}}} From your GYPSY, (Nina)

will finish up here in a few days.... I'm soooo behind ! Sorry!!!!!!!!!

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