Joe and I had a fantastic week criss-crossing the country for my Fabulicious: On the Grill book tour. Houston was fantastic! I think I signed every single book in the city! Thank you all so much for coming out! I'm so sorry they ran out of books (thank you to the guy who went to 6 different stores looking for some!), but they promise me more are on the way. If you can't find a copy in your local bookstore, they are still in stock at Amazon (http://amzn.to/RtCq8e) and BarnesAndNoble.com (http://bit.ly/16d5lX5) Love you Texas and loved the food! We had grits for breakfast. I never had those before. They were really good!
And then we hit San Francisco. We've never been there, and loved it. The weather was gorgeous, we saw all the sights, and we love love loved everyone we met! And we sold out there too! Thank you all so much for supporting me and my cookbooks. It means the world to me!
Also, thank you all for your kind wishes and prayers for my dad. He had a rough winter with pneumonia and his pacemaker surgery, but he's back up and around and doing great. It was very scary though, because he was really, really sick. It's so hard to see my father, who was always such a big, strong man, so much larger than life, getting older and having health issues. I know that's the way of life for those of us lucky to have our parents still, but it's still hard. Nothing about watching those you love in pain is easy. My dad has emphysema, so he has weak lungs. He's been in the hospital before, but this last time was the worst because he was in the ICU. We weren't sure how things were going to go, and my mother and I basically camped out with him. I wasn't going to leave his side. We were going to cancel Gia's birthday party, but my dad didn't want us to. He was in the hospital a week and finally got moved out of ICU, so we did go ahead with Gia's party.I think you can see from this episode that Melissa and I do not come from the same place. She twists everything I say or do, and says that I do the same thing to her. I'm sure it's exhausting to watch, because it is exhausting to live. I love her, she is family, but I'm not sure I'm ever going to like her. At least not all the time. Some people just don't match your personality, and that's fine. You can't be best friends with everyone. Some people don't like their own blood sisters and brothers. That my sister-in-law and I don't get along perfectly is not earth-shattering news.
But I just can't stand by when she uses my parents publicly. They really do love her and love her kids just like they love my brother. And she doesn't have her own dad around, so my dad has tried to be her dad for 8 years now. I personally think that deserves a drop-everything when you hear "our" dad is in the ICU.
You don't have to camp there. You don't have to put your entire life on hold. But I think out of respect you could visit him the first day... or two... or three... or at the very least call him and tell him why you can't come, but that you're thinking of him, praying for him, and love him.
I was by his side when my dad woke up and said it wasn't his time. I was there when he worried that he hadn't seen or even heard from Melissa or her kids. She is a daughter to him, just as my husband Joe, who is always there, is a son to him. You have to remember my dad is off-the-boat old school. Respect is a big, big deal to him. After 8 years, Melissa knows that. She's a smart girl when it comes to people; she knows how to work 'em. She knew what it would mean for her to not go. So for her to show so little respect -- not to see him for 4 days when he's in the ICU, to only stop by 1 time for 1 hour total when he was in the hospital for a week -- that really stood out to my parents. And for my dad to say something to ME tells me how hurt he is. My parents are angels to Melissa. They never say boo to her about anything. I was upset for my parents, but I wasn't going to say anything to her. It's not my place to tell her how to be a good daughter-in-law. When I was first married, my mother taught me that no matter what was going on between my husband and his family, you always love and respect your in-laws. And I'll teach my daughters the same thing.
Everyone who came to the party was a friend or family and knew my dad was in the hospital, so it's what everyone was talking about. It wasn't old news. Everyone was concerned about my dad and asking me and Melissa about him. Kim's mom battled lung cancer last year, and she knows first-hand what it's like and how much support people need when they're battling an illness.
People like Kim, who know and care about my dad, don't like to see him disrespected either. We all know Kim doesn't take any bullshit, so she asked Melissa at the party -- in a back room for adults only -- about visiting my dad right to her face.
I couldn't help but hear Melissa say that she went see him right away because my dad is her dad now. I'm sorry but it bothered me, because I don't think it's true. I don't think she would wait 4 days to see her own dad in the ICU. Or her mom. Or even her first cousin's boyfriend's sister. She says family is everything to her, but it doesn't seem like from her actions that she includes the Gorgas as her family.I couldn't believe she would lie to Kim with a straight face, so, I couldn't help it, I asked her myself when she saw him. And she lied right to my face. And then called me a liar. I was shocked, but I guess I shouldn't have been. I wasn't trying to call her out. I only wanted to let her know that her absence was really felt by my dad and it hurt them. No matter how sick she was or wasn't, a simple phone call would have meant a lot to them.
Of course I'm upset that Gia had to see any confrontation, but I didn't want one at all, so I backed down immediately. I don't know why Melissa seemed upset when she left, because she stayed for cake and the professional photos, but I was happy they came at all. Baby steps! Speaking of baby steps, my Gia is really growing up fast. I can't believe she's 12 already. And had a BFFL! How much did I love the conversation Joe had with her about boys? "You don't give boys anything they want." That covers quite a bit! Gia is our first-born and we're all adjusting to her growing up. She's testing our boundaries with everything, and we're trying to give her room, but not too much. It's a balance, but we're going to have to figure it out because we have 3 more girls to go!
For the record, Gia did not walk in on me and Joe having s-e-x. Joe was just telling her she can't kiss until she's 21 because it's "disgusting," and I was saying that it's a little too late for that since she walked in on us. Kissing. She saw us in a wet kiss moment, not the usual tap kisses we give in front of our kids, and I'm pretty sure she knows we didn't think it was disgusting. But she's a good girl, she's smart, and I trust her. But I'll still be taking her to the doctor on her wedding day. I have to clear up a few things about the gym. First, Linda is not a trainer. She's just my friend, and we work out together every single day. She has an amazing body, so you can see why I would listen to her. She practically lives at the gym, so when she saw Melissa, Kathy (who wasn't a member), and Jacqueline suddenly show up, she called me. She's protective of me like any friend would be. She knows what I went through last year. She watched the reunion. She knows how close Jacqueline and I used to be. To see that Jacqueline drove 45 minutes just to meet two people that weren't in a good place with me somewhere I go every day to unwind made Linda suspicious. She was just joking about fat asses probably to make me laugh, the same way Melissa, Kathy, and Jacqueline were laughing about Linda being a skinny bitch. Neither one was meant as an insult. We all have friends of different shapes and sizes. You don't have to look a certain way to be amazing, sexy, or confident!
No, I don't own the gym. I knew my brother went there sometimes with Melissa, but they always went at night. I've never once bumped into them when I was working out. I go every single day at the same time, so it was just weird that they all showed up then. I don't care where they go or what they do, but after all of the stress of the last year, that particular gym in the morning became my place of solitude. It's where I went to get into a good place. That's why it was upsetting for my friends to see the three of them there in case they were plotting to take some of my peace. I guess everyone is paranoid of everyone at this point. Sad face.
As to why I told Caroline that I wanted an apology from Jacqueline, yes, I did. I understand the heat of the moment, I understand trying to hurt someone you think hurt you, I understand we are all guilty sometimes. But there were two things I thought crossed the line. Last season when she brought up fake tabloid stories about me on camera and pretended to be worried that they were true, that was too much for me. And after that guy came up to Melissa and said he used to work with her, Jacqueline went to my brother and told him I set the whole thing up. And he believed her. He texted me that Jacqueline told him I set it up and that I was "dead to him" and to never speak to him again. It's the single reason why we stopped talking for good. Jacqueline knew I didn't set Melissa up. She knows who did. For her to use that lie to break up my family for good was too much for me. Aren't you curious to see how we all make our way back through this? Me too, and I lived it!
Go to my website www.teresagiudice.com for my book tour schedule and info about Fabellini, Milania Hair Care (www.milaniahaircare.com), and my new Skinny Italian Food line (www.skinnyitalianfood.com).
Follow me on Twitter @Teresa_Giudice or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Teresa-Giudice/122688361577.
Love love love you all!