OK, so where can I start? "Breast cancer is the most common malignancy among American women, with more than 200,000 new cases diagnosed each year. In recent years mortality from breast cancer has declined in the U.S., likely as a result of more widespread screening resulting in earlier detection as well as advances in the adjuvant treatment of early-stage disease." [Mettlin C. Global breast cancer mortality statistics." CA Cancer J Clin 1999;49:138–144.] Most people are familiar with concept, but most do not know that studies use bench marks such as 5 year, 10 year, and 20 year measurements to determine likelihood of reoccurrence and survival. 5 year survival without reoccurrence is a major milestone to living cancer free. Jim and I agreed that we would make sure to raise awareness for younger women and hopefully make a difference in someone’s life. What we did not expect was the scare you saw this week. I can say with all honesty, I am aware that I am “sensitized” and/or “conditioned” to fear the worst. Any change to my medical routine causes panic. You may think I am overly dramatic, and you might be right. But then again, when I think back 5 years ago the last thing on my mind was cancer. My beautiful Isabella was a newborn and Corbin a handsome toddler. I was so happy with two little miracles and step sons by my side. The world was a perfect place, but my world changed in an instant when I discovered the lumps. At first, I thought it was nothing. But Jim and I discussed it and we decided to go get it checked out. After they ran the first test, I saw the doctor’s face and it all was a blur from there. Each test came back with more questions then came the 7 surgeries, multiple scans, MRIs, 1.5 years of chemo-therapy, and hundreds of blood tests. Till this day, every night before I go to bed I take medication to prevent reoccurrence; so every night that little white pill reminds me of my nightmare. But it also reminds me of my miracle.
I am so fortunate to have a family who supported me throughout; my mother and husband were the best support group anyone could ask. I had the greatest team of doctors and was fully informed of all my options. Ladies, remember you are in control, be informed and learn your options. I recently spoke with a newly diagnosis survivor who did not know she could have reconstruction at the same time as the mastectomy. Or that there were many treatment options. When I went for my mastectomy, my plastic surgeon and surgical oncologist performed the procedure together to make sure my breast looked better after the surgery than when I was 18, pretty amazing. Needless to say this made Jim very happy!
This experience has caused me to celebrate life in every way and that may explain a lot. The little details matter to me, like taking heart or pumpkin shaped cookie cutters to my children’s school sandwiches’ so they are reminded how much Mommy loves them. Or special little notes in their snack box. Their little faces light up each morning trying to guess which shape I used on their sandwiches. This year my family did something extra special. We researched our family heritage, both the Marchese and Corbino side, and we had our family crests etched into glasses, printed on sweat shirts and hats. We had a blast! We married the two crests onto various household decorations, such as on throw pillows and a historical banner that hangs in our main hallway. The designers liked what we did so much they created a “Marchese Collection” on their site HistoricalNames.com. I invite you to look at our collection and celebrate our family heritage or research and celebrate your family. Either way, life is about family and celebration, and what better way to honor your heritage? Now on to the rest of the episode. I think it is funny that Joe Gorga thinks he is babysitting, but I will cut him some slack as he works hard to provide for his family. I was cracking up when Joe tried to talk to his Antonia about staying away from boys and that she not permitted to date until she is 35-years-old. Jim wholeheartedly agrees with Joe on this issue, you’re all shocked I am sure. Jim tells Isabella the same thing all the time. Italian dads are all cut form the same cloth.
It was nice to see Jacqueline and Kathy talking about life, and I enjoy their sincerity. My heart goes out to Jacqueline and Chris as they have a beautiful family and I cannot imagine how difficult it must be for them to see their child struggle. Jim and I respect the decisions they are making by putting Nick's needs before a house or anything else for that matter. They are truly strong and loving parents.
Watching this episode and seeing the previews of next episode, Melissa was such a pleasant surprise. This “fun loving,” sometimes silly girl is the Melissa that I knew and loved years ago! It was so great to see her “cut up” and have some fun. And let me tell, that girl has always had a great ass. I am totally jealous of that derriere.
Florida, well, this is going to get interesting as you can see from the previews. But before we go there, did anyone catch Dina’s reaction to my call. She did not exactly seem pleased we were coming down or excited that I was in good health. I get the rumor was on her mind, but that was not exactly fair to me. Teresa told her about the Rino/Santa affair and she knew I was an unwilling witness to the Gotti testimony. I feel like I should be in witness protection or something. It was satirical watching Dina talk about my motives in gossiping and then watch her and Teresa Giudice gossip. What was suspicious is the way she tried to tell TeRESSSA and Nicole about the affair. She starts out by saying Amber knows something. Why? I had nothing to do with this; she should have said Victoria Gotti told Amber and Teresa Giudice something. It was clear Dina was shifting the blame of the Gotti rumor from Gotti to me! I am calling out BS. This explains why the twins have blamed me for the rumor. It is sad, the twins have been angry at me, yet I agreed to keep it quiet and did not give it any credence. I am not a TeReSSa fan at all, but I cannot imagine how she must of felt. I am with her on this one, I don’t want it said and I don’t need to know. I would have demanded Dina to tell me in a more private setting and would have been offended if Dina decided to do that for the world to see.
[video_clip_url:http://player.theplatform.com/p/PHSl-B/yT7k3t_YLXoZ/embed/select/dvLbpV5VSN7G]Seeing this all played back to me, at first, I was so angry. However, as I watched it again, it has become quite comical. Between Teresa Giudice, Dina, and the twins, it seems like some sort of mass hysteria was taking them over. Clearly this caused them (especially Dina, who treated it like another funeral in her head) to have a lapse of judgment, when to me, this is still nothing more than a “your mama joke.” This should have been squashed and done with at this point and put in the books as one of the most ridiculous stories ever heard so we can all get on with our martinis. I think I am putting this one in the history books beating out the “dancing plague” of 1518 in Strasbourg, France as the most ridiculous of incident of mass hysteria to be recorded. The dancing plague, much like the Gotti rumor, made everyone dance until they died of stroke or heart attack believing in something that was not true.
On a lighter note, Jim is glad I was not in Florida with just the girls. It would have been hard to explain the girls whistling to guys on a boat, comparing nipple guards, or the “golden showers/pearl necklaces” conversation while watching porn on Dina’s phone. I am a girls' girl and get it, I think it's hysterical. Jim, not so much.