Welcome back. Well, after watching this week's episode, I've had a gut ache that just won't go away and still hasn't. It's terrible to watch scenes that you are not in, and how people feel the need to talk badly about you when you are not there. Makes you never want to leave a room doesn't it?
When we initially planned for the trip to be a "girls" trip, it was planned during the week and I thought really nothing of it that the guys weren't invited. I had no idea it was going to turn into such a problem with the men. I had just finished a week in West Palm Beach for an insurance conference and thought it would be great to extend it for a few days and have the girls come down to join me in Ft. Lauderdale. Due to the fact it was during the week, Donn was fine with me continuing my stay for a few more days and wasn't planning on taking time off of work to meet me. When I found out Simon and Jim were coming I thought, 'Well, then it's not a girls trip if the guys are joining us' and I wondered how it would turn out. Even though Donn wasn't planning on going, he told me to go anyways and to have a great time. In hindsight, once I knew the dynamics were changing with Simon and Jim coming, I probably should have listened to my gut and just gone home and not stayed for the few extra days. Simon and I had already had a few conflicts this summer, and I felt very uncomfortable being around him and really didn't want to see him.
The first night when we all had met in the lobby it was great to see the ladies. Even though Simon was there, I made it a point to just be cordial and not to cause any problems and to take the high road. I was told that it was only going to be Jim and Simon coming, so I thought that was going to be fine, because then it meant that Gretchen and Lynne and I were probably going to hang out together since Alexis and Tamra had their spouses with them. Once I saw Slade show up, I felt like I was being punked. It was ridiculous that these men wouldn't allow their women to go away for three days to enjoy girl time. Again, if I knew ahead of time that it was going to be that way, I would have just gone home and let them have their couples trip.
The last night that of the boat yacht trip, I was told that the men were not joining us that they were going to do their own thing and that Slade had gone home because he had court for his youngest son (child support issues) and wasn't even in Florida any longer. Once I heard that Slade elected to stay the extra night and that Jim and Simon were going on the yacht, I decided it was best for me not to go. I called Donn to get his opinion, and he told me I was doing the right thing. Once of my collegues in the insurance industry and his girlfriend live in Ft. Lauderdale so I called them up and the three of us ended up going to dinner and I had a great time. It ended up being a great night which was comfortable, non confrontational and was the right place for me to be with good friends who support me, love me, and make me feel happy.