Oct 20, 2016

Taste and See For It Will Pass And Be Gone From Us Straightaway ~ DHC

The phone rang. The caller was inconsolable and I was unable to understand what was being said.  It was my sister Debbie. She was screaming and crying all at the same time. I couldn’t understand what she was saying.  Then she started to scream out my nephew’s name over and over again.  
"Nicky, Nicky, Nicky!!!"  
When panic hits the family I grew up in, we have specific roles we play.  When panic hits, I go on high alert first.  My armor comes out of the closet and I quickly lock in.  Protected from all the unknowns I had never questioned this way of coping. 

"Nicky, Nicky, Nicky".  
"What? What are you saying. Debbie! Stop screaming. Breathe.  Tell me what you want me to know".   
"Nicky is dead!" 
"Debbie, where did this come from?" 

My sister Kim, Nicky’s mom was far away in Louisiana.  She’d moved there with our niece Michelle just over a month before.  Nicky had moved in with his Dad at the same time.  

Debbie was still hard to understand and I was still wearing lots of armor. Memory gets unclear. I remember telling her I’d be right there.  It was a five minute drive from my house to hers. I bet I made it in 3. 

Nicky had been bike riding with a friend after school. It was a beautiful autumn afternoon in New England. The colors on the trees were vibrant with reds greens and yellows dancing on the trees showing off all the glory of nature.  Riding downhill toward the main road, the duo turned onto route 33. Nicky took the turn too wide and a car smacked into him right then and there.  He was thrown off his bike, landing a distance from the collision and was mortally injured.  

The Ridgefield Emergency Services Team were on the spot as quickly as they could have been after being notified. I was told that the team revived Nicky nine times before arriving at Danbury Hospital but, my nephew was dead upon arrival.  

I’m unclear who had contacted Deb. It may have been a friend of ours who was with the fire department at the time.  It may have been Nicky’s father.  I don’t know those details as I sit here this morning.  All I know is that a horrible nightmare began for my sister Kim, my niece Michelle, Nick my former brother-in-law, those of us who were related to, knew and loved Nicholas DeRosa. Sudden loss of a loved one is unbearably tough. The sudden loss of a child is onerous. To lose your own child an incomprehensible cruelty.  

I got to Debbie’s house with my two daughters and stayed with our five kids while Debbie drove to Danbury hospital to confirm Nicky had died in this freak accident. It was a long afternoon with our offspring. My armor was working because I do not remember what I said to the children as I tried to console them and to answer their questions.

The worst news imaginable was confirmed.  Nicky was gone.  At 14, a member of our family had given his life over as a sacrifice for all of us whose lives had been touched by this magical blue eyed boy. We had hard work ahead. We needed to notify Nicky’s Mom and sister Kim on a farm in Pioneer, Louisiana.  How do you inform a mother that her son is dead?  
Who will do it?  What do you say?  How do you say it over a phone line?  
Do you call the police? Do you fly there to let her know in person?  

My Vinny came forward and decided to make the call.  
Kim’s fiancĂ©e who was most always in the field working the farm answered the phone. 
"Jay, Nicky has been in an accident."
 "The worst has happened. Nicky is gone. We just had it confirmed." 
Jay didn't want Vin to break the news to Kim. Jay carried that weight. I think Vin stayed on the line.  

It is times like these when if we really take time to be in the moments, the miserable, pain filled, frightening moments that we may actually recognize a morsel of mercy along with the pain and inconceivable grief that must be worked through. Kim and Michelle were not alone in the house when the news came to them.  A sliver of love shone through on an afternoon which would mark all October's in our memory banks. 

This morning I woke thinking of Nicky, Michelle, Kim, Nick.  I thought about what I always think of on an autumn day when the leaves are painted with colors that bring my heart to much grief and to much love. We have watched 28 years come and go since Nicky left this plane of life and moved on.  

Painter’s arrived here to continue with the work they started almost 2 weeks ago now.  Paper work was sitting on the desk waiting to be processed.  I got busy.  A delivery arrived from UPS. I went outside to pick it up when I noticed a movement in the trees. Then I saw a hawk circling high above West Rocks. I am reminded to zoom out and to visualize things from on high with the precise vision of a hawk searching for a meal.  This piece of writing was brought to me to share with you.  

Whoever you are, whatever you are facing today, I recommend you stop. I recommend you take a deep breath.  I recommend you exhale any questions, stress or pain within. 
Finally, I recommend you envision this moment with the precise vision of a hawk in search of nourishment. Taste and see this moment as it is for it will pass and be gone from us straightaway.  ~

I love you Kim.  I love Michelle. xoxo 

Sep 9, 2015

Yes, you can wear white after Labor Day

This tidbit from Scarlett Image showed up in my personal inbox this morning.  I am so pleased because I have had a few conversations about wearing white after Labor Day already.

In my younger days I worked retail and have loved fashion as long as I can recall.  I work from a home office now & rarely dress up unless I have to.  I love my casual lifestyle but that's for another post on another day.

This tidbit from Scarlett Image showed up in my personal inbox this morning.  I am so pleased because I have had a few conversations about wearing white after Labor Day already.

In my younger days I worked retail and have loved fashion as long as I can recall.  I work from a home office now & rarely dress up unless I have to.  I love my casual lifestyle but that's for another post on another day.

I met Scarlett at a Business Women's Networking Event some years ago. I watched the makeovers she she had a hand in and loved her style. One of the things I love about Scarlett is the way she helps women (me) choose the best look and fit with ease.  I follow Scarlett's social media action and receive updates that inspire.  I decided to reach out to Scarlett when I was clearing out my closet and preparing for a couple of business trips.  I needed help choosing what to keep, what to donate, and what to toss.  I had a large assortment of wonderful clothes when we finished our first session. My closet began looking like a dream come true.  

The wonderful assortment of outfits we put together came with photos of me in those outfits so I'd know what to bring on my trips. 

On a personal shopping tour with her I had a ball trying on the items she'd prepared for me in advance. I felt like a celebrity having the sales woman ready for our arrival.

I trust Scarlett to help me whenever I shop for seasonal wear. I have accumulated a look that I love.

Yesterday I stepped out the door in this 90 + degree heat wearing one of the original outfits I purchased with Scarlett in late spring 2013 and was greeted by two neighbors on a walk. The gals complimented my look immediately.  I won't lie. I loved it. (Thanks A & S).

This remains one of my favorite casual outfits. 
I love feeling good in my clothes. Working from home office, I do not need to dress daily.  A gal can find herself feeling lousy wearing tee shirts and shorts all the time.  I prefer dresses.

Scarlett, thanks for clearing this up.  Now, who has been asking me about wearing white this week?

Follow this link to Scarlett's Website where you will find some great tips for your wardrobe.

No need for something new her

Lots of black was in my wardrobe


Easy breezy summertime 

More black.  

Not my favorite top.  It's heading out this season. 
Jeans, a white top, a sweater

Okay thats it for today.  Thanks for checking in!

Apr 3, 2015

Good Friday Reflections

Good Friday Reflections - I used to love going to church, singing hymns, reading and hearing sermons.  I used to love being in the community with others who came together for similar purposes as I did.  I used to love the Maundy Thursday reading of the Last Supper passages and reenactments the little churches I’ve participated in portrayed from one year until the next.

I would dress for church “appropriately” in “church attire” and I would get there early to get a good seat, aka my seat.  With or without my Vinnie, I’d be there each day in Holy week to connect to and be reminded of and to fall in love with Jesus all over again. I did this to appreciate Him and to try and grasp the meanings behind the Passion of the Christ. 

I used to love to tell the story and the Gospel according to Denise. I know it sounds wrong but its so. The Gospel according to each one of us individually matters.

I used to weep on Good Friday. I used to go to church a lot. I miss having the love of going to church that I once carried in every fiber of my being.  I don’t know when I lost it.  Was it when I was struck with a depression? Did I make a mistake being employed by two different churches?  Did I get too involved in committee work?  Was it because of when I was a kid? I haven’t been able to trace it. But I know that I don’t love church so much anymore. 

I don’t like rushing to get out the door in time, or dressing up. I don’t like to feel alone and I don’t like to be in a community where I am reminded of things that have separated me from what was once experienced as Grace. We are powerless over other people, places and things and I am reminded not to hold a grudge so I let go and I release and I pray and I find there is comfort in prayer and in like-minded community. But, I miss loving church and singing hymns.  I miss the enjoyment of hearing sermons. 

Oh and I do miss the passion I had. Perhaps it was the exuberance of youth?  I miss how the longing in my heart would somehow be filled with an assurance that goes beyond explanation.  And I miss the way my heart would break and mend all at the same time with the reading of Jesus’ words from the cross, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” The words assured because those words remind me that I had not been singled out to suffer for some major or minor sin that created a separation between my heart and the Messiah’s. 

In the emptiest moment of the afternoon most Good Fridays, I will sit quietly and now alone while I contemplate the reason and purpose for my life’s mission.  I am reminded today of how many times I have been loved and reassured by good church folk that while there is the dark night, there is also the bright morning.  I am reminded of the folks I’ve sat with over the years and tried to witness or reassure them in a time of need.  It is a lonely wait that calls us from today until Easter Morning.  It’s lonely for each one of us. Even so, we are not alone.

Today I feel I am walking a forsaken walk and I wish I didn’t feel the call to share so personal a story. But I know this for certain, I answer the call , “Here I am, send me.” because experience has shown me time and again that this truth telling - my truth - is the best way for me.  It’s through the cross and beyond to a glorious new beginning again and again. See you in church.  Maybe…    

Nov 11, 2013

Promise's Story

This is an update I have been avoiding because we are down to one dog now.

Promise who is six is learning to live indoors for the first time. She's spent her days outdoors fenced in and nights in a dog house while having puppies annually. She is content being indoors and is never shy about heading up to the door to return inside after her walks.

The ear infection she had is cleared up. That has to feel better. She is learning to "go" while attached to a leash too. It's the little things that make a difference. She's learning words - when I asked what commands she knew I was surprised there were none. She knew her name only.

With more tears than I thought would fall the puppy has gone to a new home.  He is with a family who recently lost their 13 year old Blue Merle Collie named Blue. 

Even though it was a difficult decision for us we are pleased the little guy is at a loving home. We miss him a lot though mama Promise is relishing the attention and a well deserved rest. She stopped looking for him the 2nd day. Oh be still my heart. 

Stay tuned for more stories as Promise grows accustomed to being a Diva in CT & Ptown MA. 

Oct 19, 2013

Promises - Promise's

Promise & her little Baby Face

Sunday was a great day to go for a drive. Vin and I jumped on I84 toward North Chelmsford, MA. We were meeting Promise this beautiful sable rough collie who will be six in December. We were early and stopped at an Applebee's for lunch before our 1:00 meeting. 

Promise has been looking for her forever home. She gave birth to a litter of four sable roughs in early August.

There were 3 perfect female puppies and 1 male puppy born. The male is the 8-10 wk old recently weaned pup in the picture. He is blind in one eye and wanted a fur-ever home too.

The moment we met his mama - this little guy rushed over to me then to Vin rapidly chewing and untying both our pairs of shoes. Then, he did it again and again. So very grateful for our Sunday drive last weekend. We were back on the road nearly 3 hours later and had a nice visit. Guess what? The dogs are ours now. The duo will be coming home to live with us shortly. We are making arrangements!
Baby Face is on the left