I feel blessed to have known Denise Shea, and to have called her “My friend, my dearest friend”.
I first met Denise about 11 years ago at the local Y. She came up to me and asked me if I was a Pisces. I laughed and said "Yes, how did you know?" Well, I soon learned that Denise "just knew" about lots of things. Our friendship blossomed into what I would call a sisterly love.
I think what I will remember first and foremost about Denise was her striking beauty. I will always see those big soft round dark eyes, the thick dark head of hair, her radiant skin; that sunshine smile.
Denise’s beauty was not just on the surface. She radiated warmth and goodness to whoever came in her path. I don’t believe she ever uttered an unkind word about a living being. She was so thoughtful and chose each word, careful to not ever offend or show disrespect.
Denise’s generosity of spirit was demonstrated every single day in so many ways. And, she never demanded or asked for reciprocity. It was just her way. She cared so much about others, about her family and friends. And she treated all those in her life equally, whether it was her house keeper, or the President of a bank.
I’ve always admired Denise’s innate talent for just about everything she touched. Forget about those designers who spent years studying at their Design Institute to earn their degrees. Denise never had to go to school to know everything there is to know about how to make a house into a home, a yard into a luscious garden or a supper into an unforgettable dining experience.
She could take any room and then transform it into something magnificent. Anyone who has ever been to her home knows exactly what I mean. What amazes me even more is that she was never boastful of her many talents, instead exuding a quiet and elegant dignity reminiscent of royalty. I feel thankful that each time I look at my kitchen, family room dining room, and basement, I will see her handiwork and I will cherish all of wonderful memories we shared in making those rooms into what they are.
Denise, always had such style; just the way she could wear a scarf around her neck or merely roll up her sleeves made her look like a million bucks. She was always “put together”. Even in the gym, I remember once after we did a strenuous cardio work out and were about to leave the gym. We went to the ladies room to wash our hands. I looked in the mirror at myself, and saw what looked like a wet cat and smelled like a skunk. Then I looked over at Denise. She had just bent her head down and then flung it back, shaking her hair in the process. When she looked up, she looked perfectly coiffed and as though she’d never worked out. I looked at her in horror and said, “What is wrong with this picture” How could she look so good? And in her typical style, she just smiled.
I must not forget what a quick and organized mind Denise had. Her memory for just about anything was unbelievable. It was as though she had a computer chip in her brain and could recall exactly what she paid for every piece of furniture or accessory she ever purchased, where she purchased it and the date. She could recall names of people, restaurants and their locations, films, shows, songs, actors, you name it. In fact, she was able to complete my thoughts whenever I was having a “senior moment”. All I had to do was describe what I was trying to say. She would always get it right.
Her mind also contained a filing cabinet because I can tell you that she was the most organized person I have ever known. Everything was in a designated place, labeled and easily accessible. She is one tough act to follow.
To say I’m going to miss Denise is to not even touch the tip of the iceberg. For my grief goes so much deeper.
Here is a poem for you, my honey bunny, as I used to call you:
You Are Never Forgotten
You are somebody that everybody knows
Wherever you are is where everyone goes
And I can't help but think about what to do now
Will I see you someday, will I find you somehow
The night follows day, the moon in the sky
The world keeps on turning and no one knows why
It goes and it comes it comes and it goes
Which ever direction nobody knows
Our times together though cut short were precious and dear
However it happened just may never be clear
I'm here but your gone I don't understand
But your leading the way always holding my hand
The night is too black now when I'm alone
The road seems to long, I wish you'd come home
And when the sun rises I look for you still
And then I remember and remember I will
The wind in the sails water covers the earth
The day of your birth and the day of your death
Mile after mile and after while the warmth of your heart
The shine of your smile they keep me going
The memories of love
that's all I have left
like the flight of a dove
Where are you now? Are you far, are you near?
Are you helping me live will you help make it clear
Wherever your going where ever you've been
Whomever you've known all of your friends
We all stand beside you we all love you still
We're missing you now and forever we will
We sing and we talk the world in our hands
We run and we walk while beside us you stand
The days we shared together the memories that will never end