Grateful

Gretchen Rossi shares what it's like to be the new Housewife on the block, and explains why she's "smack-a-doodle" fun!

Jeff really wanted me to do the show, but I was very hesitant. It's scary to put your life on display for public scrutiny, but Jeff really felt we had a special story to tell, that people who have dealt with having cancer or knowing someone with cancer could relate to. He really found it important to show that life can be great with money, but that is not what life is all about. Watching the first episode was very emotional for me — I really, really miss Jeff a lot. It put a smile on my face to see the love we shared and the commitment we had to take care of each other during a very trying time. Sometimes when you are in the mist of it you don't really stop to smell the roses and now having documentation of that time together is very special to me.

It bothers me that it looks like I wasn't physically attracted to Jeff at all - the question that was asked of me was, When I FIRST met Jeff over four years ago, was attracted to him?" I answered honestly and said, "I really didn't see him in that way. Jeff was a client, not someone I was considering dating at the time, and he actually looked like Kenny Rogers or Santa Claus to me when I first met him." Once he and I got to know each other and he was "smitten" with me (about two years later) I fell in love with him on every level - including the physical. But my point was that the physical is really not what was important to me, or why I fell in love with him. I fell in love with Jeff because of the way he treated me and others.

It was really hard to relive the circumstances of Jeff getting diagnosed with cancer, but I almost feel lucky to have a video journal of my emotions and feelings during that time. It helps me remember what life is really all about. I was honest when I said that there were days that I questioned what I was doing, but ultimately my priorities changed because of the circumstances and my love for a wonderful man.

I have a great relationship with Jeff's kids. Of course we have our moments of bickering, but ultimately we love each other because Jeff loved us all. He was the true definition of love and taught all of us the importance of love in life. Jill likes to taunt me, and she knows how to get under people's skin, but it's not because we don't get along. We have even talked about her moving out here to California with me to go to school! Jake takes after his father and is turning into an amazing man. We talk often and his Dad would be so proud of him. Lizzy is just full of spunk, love and life and I cannot say enough good things about his kids. It's just like every blended family - some days are good some days are bad, but at the end of day we love each other very much.

After meeting the other housewives, my first impression was what the heck did I sign up for? They were not too friendly and way too cliquish. I have never wanted to be associated with one particular group or clique because then you miss out on meeting so many other intriguing and interesting people. The housewives did not intimidate me, because I am a very secure person. Besides I kind of already felt like I knew them a little, because I was a fan of the show. So I knew I could hold my own around them.

I'm not sure why there is so much focus around my breasts, and just for the record, I am not opposed to getting a boob job or any procedure that makes someone feel and look good. I am pretty sure after I start to see them fall to my tummy I will want to get them done too! I guess it's rare these days in Orange County to have anything real, let alone breasts, so I guess it's a bigger deal. Hey, I have had Botox done - I consider it preventative maintenance, so hopefully I don't have to go under the knife later in life. Now only if they had Botox for my breasts.

I was laughing my butt off about some of the words I used in the episode, like "smack-a-doodle fun." That's a word I have never said before or even knew I knew. It also made me laugh when Tamra kept saying that I was not a threat to her and that she wasn't jealous of me. She seemed really nice to my face and I had no idea she talked so much about me behind my back, especially after I said I thought I got along the best with her. Oh well, guess I pegged her wrong. Hopefully she gets nicer throughout the series. The experience was very different for me, but overall it was exciting and fun. At the end of the day I am very grateful to have some special footage of Jeff that I will treasure for a lifetime.

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