Welcome to Nelson's Rainbow Bridge Memorial Residency
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Memories of Nelson
My beautiful, beautiful Nelson; we spent only an hour together yet you found your way into my heart, forever.

I hope you know I fell in love with you the first time I saw your picture. I hope you sensed my excitement as I drove to Angel Hill to meet you. I hope you felt the joy in my heart and the love in my soul as you sat in my arms, turning towards me to share kisses. I hope you felt my disappointment as I left you behind to wait for the home visit and your vet appointment. I hope you sensed my sorrow and heard my grief when you did not make it through your surgery. I hope you agree that one hour was too short a time to spend together. I hope you can see the happy life I planned for us together. I hope you believe I will love you forever.

8/3/2009: Hi my baby boy. I miss you terribly. I pray you are doing well, enjoying your new life at the Rainbow Bridge. This memorial is for you, for us. Many kind and caring souls have visited, offering us their wishes and prayers. From reading their offerings, I know you have been greeted by many new friends. I am comforted knowing you are not alone. Though you never experienced the blessing of a true family I know you are now safe, well loved, and surrounded by the grace you deserve. One day I will join you and we will have our time together, I promise.

Christmas 2009: Hi my beautiful puckpuppy; it's Daddy. I still miss you and think of you every day. I can't help but cry when I think how tragic it is that you missed our life together.

Minch is now with me, enjoying a life that would have been yours. He goes with me everywhere and is my faithful companion. And while I love him dearly, you are never alone; my heart always is with you. Cesar says that you don't get the dog you want; you get the dog you need. We were together so briefly, but that brevity and the heartache that followed taught me how to feel again. After so many years of numbing addiction, you broke my heart open. While your passing shattered me with pain, it was a beautiful pain because, for the first time in memory, I allowed myself to feel it. And through that pain I took another huge step towards healing. Thank you my wonderful pup. I owe you a world of gratitude. You are the dog I needed. You taught me how to feel, you taught me I can love. And now Minch stands on your shoulders and is teaching me how to be strong so I rebuild the wreckage that is my life.

Today would have been our first Christmas together. There would have been presents under the tree for you and some special goodies in your bowl. Instead your gifts and goodies are in my heart, given freely to you. Baby pup, I hope you are happy. I hope you are celebrating the miracle that is Christmas with all the other furries at the Rainbow Bridge. Enjoy the snow. Hop through it; bury your nose in it, and shake gloriously, spreading white love all around you. Remember, I am always with you; you are always with me in my heart. Merry Christmas baby boy.

Spring 2010: Hi my beautiful boy . . it's your Daddy :) Know that I never forget you. Not a day goes by when I don't think about you. I hope you are happy. I hope you are having fun with all your friends up by the Rainbow Bridge.

I continue to pull together the pieces of shattered life. June 30 will be one year sober for me. I am so very proud and I am so very thankful to you. Meeting you was my first important turning point toward a solid recovery.

I have invited Tashi to join Minch and I as we travel this road together. I told her all about you. She knows how I dream about us all together one day.

I hope you are playing and romping in the warm springtime sun. You have no idea how badly I wish you were here with me now. There seems to be no end to the tears when I think about what we missed. I love you; always will. Remember that. Never doubt it.

7/29/2010: Good morning my beautiful boy. A year ago I was filled with hopeful anticipation as I prepared for your homecoming. I was riding high on a wave of joy after meeting you just days earlier, remembering you sitting in my lap, exchanging licks and kisses. But your homecoming was not meant to be. Instead you were blessed to be taken home to the Rainbow Bridge.

The past year has brought many joys and many sorrows. But through it all, you have always been by my side. Even as I walk Minch and Tashi, you are right there, walking along with us.

I hope you are enjoying the summer sun. I hope you are running through fields of tall summer grass, chasing your friends, resting in the shade of the evergreen trees, taking a deep cool drink in the nearby stream.

I love you Nelson, always remember that. Daddy is always here for you; you can visit anytime.

July 29, 2012 -- Oh my beautiful baby boy. I hope you don't mind me calling you that; you're such a big boy now. I am so sorry I haven't visited for so long. But please, believe me, not a day goes by when I do not think about you. Your picture and your memories are with me in my study. Yes, baby, my study! We moved into a house and out of that small apartment. You would so enjoy the house, with its backyard and lots of room to run and play.

Minch and Tashi are with me still, and we have a new addition, Norbu, who joined us about a year ago as a pup of about eight months. I have told him all about you, and how his forever home with me is a continued testament to my love for you. The four of us are a close pack, always together; playing, working, sleeping together on the couch. And you are here too in that safe, special place in my heart, my constant companion.

I hope you are proud of me. I hope you looked down this June and smiled as I gave thanks for the blessing of three years sober. You continue to be a big part of that. And while I wish that this sobriety has brought with it a life of serenity, I know it can. So I keep working on my puppy skills, to see the world as you do, to achieve that peace, to be at home in the world, because I know, despite the pain, that life is good. So many have given up on me, but I know you have not, and that gives me the strength to continue this journey.

Enjoy every minute my beautiful pup. Run free, chase your friends, find lots of good smells. Please help those pups who are newly adjusting to being away from their loved ones. And, help those who never knew a good home but who are now at peace. Show them the beauty of God's love all around them.

Daddy loves you. Daddy misses you. I may still cry when I think about you, but never doubt how happy I will always be for our time together, no matter how short it was.

Remember my sweet Nelson, you can visit whenever you wish; there's always a place for you, always!

July 29, 2013 -- My dearest baby boy, another year has gone by, another year without you here, but another year spent with you in my heart and in my soul. I honestly do not know where the time goes. I guess that is part of growing older.

Know that Minch, Tashi, and Norbu are doing well. Norbu had a health scare last year but I nursed him back over a long 6 months. I wish I had a chance to do that for you. I hope you know I would have. I would have done anything for you.

This year I can proudly tell you that I am finally approaching a life lived with happiness instead of perpetual anxiety, depression, and anguish. It has been a long road, helped traveled by 4 plus years of sobriety and having you walking by my side from those first turns toward healthiness then over each and every step. Thank you my beautiful pup for all that you have done for me.

I hope you are happy. I picture you, romping in a field, rolling in the grass under a sunny sky and a warm breeze. I picture you with lots of friends, sniffing, chasing, playing. Be a good pup. Enjoy every day. Take time to help those who are in need, especially those who miss their Moms and Dads.

Keep looking down on us, and remember how much you are loved, still, to this very day, forever. And while rushing my time here is no longer how I want to live, I cannot wait to be with you again, for long walks, to play together, to pet you and rub your ears, to cuddle for naps, making up for all the time we never had together. Remember me, and my love for you. Never be afraid to visit; you are always in Daddy's heart and you are always welcomed by my side. My sweet Nelson, I miss you so much!

July 29, 2014 -- Another year and I still miss you very much. I see your pictures in my study and I imagine how wonderful it be would to have you here with me. I tell the other pups about their other brother, who could not be here with us but who is always here in spirit. I tell them about you, and how we lost each other, and how because of you, they are now here with me.

Dorje joined our pack a year ago. He has black hair like you, along with your independent spirit. He is a bit of a wild child but he is also a Daddy's boy. He is always by my side. Even when the others have gone off to sleep elsewhere, Dorje stays with me through the night.

Norbu was sick again, just as last year at about the same time. Added to that, he needed major surgery. Can you believe that clown ate a sock? Yes, he did or something like it. His recovery has been slow and long, but he is finally coming back into his playful self again. I know the two of you would have been great friends.

Thank you Nelson. You taught me how to feel again, and you showed me the path to healing, a path I continue today -- 5 years in June. Whenever I doubt a power greater than me, I remember the miraculous puppy who changed my life though I spent precious little time with him. Such things do not happen by chance.

I love you. I hope you are happy my dear boy. I hope you have nothing but sunny days with lots of friends to play with in beautiful fields of green. Never forget that Daddy loves you, remembers you, and misses you. There is a doggie bed here waiting for you. Always.

Christmas 2014 - My dearest Nelson. I hope you are enjoying your Christmas with lots of furry friends, playing in the snow, and yummy special food to celebrate this special day. Minch, Tashi, Norbu, and Dorje all wish you a very Merry Christmas and they wish you were here to make our family complete. Daddy misses you, especially on days like today. The past few months have been rough. The ground underneath me feels shaky. I feel shaky, unsure of so much. I've been taught that this will pass but in the midst, it doesn't feel like it. Remembering you, and the lessons I learned in our short time together helps me keep it together. I love you pup, forever and always. My Christmas wish is for you to visit me again in my dreams. I'll be looking for you.

Christmas 2015 - My love, my puckpuppy. Another year has gone, another Christmas is here, and you are still very much in my heart. You are permanently infused into my soul. I still tell Minch, Tashi, Norbu, and Dorje the same story about us and our short time together. I suspect they are getting bored hearing it, but they are too polite to show it. No matter. I will never forget you because I know you would never forget me. I hope you are happy. I hope you find love and comfort with many friends to share your days. Come visit me in my dreams. We'll go for a nice long walk and I'll scratch you till you are shaking with joy. I love you, sweet boy, always remember that.

Christmas 2016 - Nelson my dearest forever puppy, I miss you, as always. Your brothers and sisters are doing well, and enjoying the life I hoped you would you enjoy as well. Dad just celebrated his birthday, and his best gift was getting engaged to Mom. I wish you were here when it happened. I hope you have not forgotten me because I will never forget you. I hope you are happy and feel the love that I always send to you. Remember, each passing year brings us one year closer to being together again. I'll come get you first, and we can finally have that long walk together I always dream about. I love you, forever.

July 29, 2017: The 8 year anniversary of that awful day - Remember, my love for you is always! Enjoy a good romp in the summer sun and a dip in the creek to cool down.

December 25, 2019: I know it has been a long time since I last visited, but believe me my baby, you have never been far from my thoughts or my heart. This past year or so have been tough. Your would-be brother, Minch, was in ever failing health, and Mom and I had been very busy caring for him, day and night, for over a year. I don't think I slept more than a few hours a night for about a year. But that's what you do for love; that's what I so wanted to do for you, my puck puppy. I let Minchie-boy go at the end of summer. It was the hardest decision I ever made. I hope you were there to meet him at the Rainbow Bridge. I hope you helped him settle in. It was always tough for Minch to make friends, please show him the way. I'm sure he'll tell you lots of stories of all our adventures over our many years. He was my best buddy; he had the time with me you couldn't. I hope you are both happy, pain free, running and playing with each other. I love you and I still, after all these years, miss you.

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