Well, the hardest part of this episode was watching me talk to my good friend Joanie about my father. I have to tell you, I cried and shook all over again. Our conversation was so emotional and struck such a deep chord in me. I am not a perfect person, but I am trying. We are all a product of our environment. It was really difficult for me to share my past with Joanie and everyone else, even now. I have always been so ashamed and have tried to block out those ugly memories I witnessed between my mom and dad.
Even as I am writing this I am crying, crying for the love I never got from my father, crying for the way my mom was abused by my father, crying for the lost childhood I never had because of my father. Unless you lived through this, no one can begin to imagine what it's like. I thank God every day my loving husband Mario convinced me to have my father at our home over Christmas. I needed closure. It would have been even more devastating if he had died and we never made peace with each other. I encourage everyone to make peace with estranged loved ones. By spending time with my father and forgiving him, it freed me of a weight that was always so heavy upon me. I never realized what a heavy burden it was until his passing. Since his death I have been looking at everything differently. I have a calmness to me I never had before. I am trying to think before I speak, though I still have a hard time with it. I find myself constantly saying to people, "I would like to share some thoughts with you, and I do not mean to offend you," or "I hope I don't come across rude, if I did I am sorry" etc. I still have a long way to go, as you will see in future episodes. All I can say is that I am trying and I am aware.
The most important thing is that I never say anything intending to be mean-spirited or vicious, and the people who are my close friends know this about me.