John and Nell Ward are long-time members of our Berner community. Committed and dedicated volunteers on behalf of Berners, John and Nell were responsible for the Rescue Gallery at our National Specialties for many years.
We visited with John and Nell (and their Berner, Summer) in November on our way home from Phoenix.
Spending time with John and Nell is both fun and inspiring, inviting a valuable shake-up in one’s perspective.
After many years of troubling symptoms, Nell was finally diagnosed with a rare muscle disease that is slowly and steadily robbing her of function. She is no longer able to walk, and her arms and hands do not work well anymore.
Nell is not an old woman. She is a vibrant, intelligent, and kind person whose body is not allowing her to live the retirement dreams that she and John created together.
And so Nell did what resilient people do — she adapted to her ever-changing New Normal with an amazing amount of both grace and directness.
Nell and John now live in a lovely facility in southern Utah that provides the support they need while still maintaining their independence, and yes — Summer lives there with them.
Nell told me something that I will never forget: “Some day all you will have left is memories and so make good ones.”
I think of this so much.
When I am exhausted by my traveling or overwhelmed by yet another night away from home, I think about the memories I am making and the adventures I am having, and I know so keenly how blessed I am.
And so I keep going — because I can. Thank you, Nell.
In the Berner Community, there are no strangers and so please — stop in to visit John, Nell, and Summer if you are traveling on I-15 in southern Utah; they would so love to see/meet you and your dogs.
Send me an email or use the Contact Us form if you would like to be connected — or re-connected — with our friends, John and Nell.
And head on out today to make some good memories — because you can.