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Grow Up!

Vicki talks about her daughter's health, her blowout with Alexis, and her friendship with Tamra.

By Vicki Gunvalson

Thank you to everyone that has contacted me about Briana's health. I thought it was important to give you an update. Last week Briana went back to the doctor to have her 6 month checkup on her thyroid nodules. After the doctor conducted an ultrasound on the nodules, he noticed that they had grown and ordered another biopsy. Today, she had over eight needle biopsies done on her neck and we will now have to wait about seven days to find out the results. Assuming she will have a benign result, we then have to entertain the option of having her thyroid and all the nodules removed. She's been very brave through this entire ordeal and I'm so proud of her. She's the "wind beneath my wings" and I love her so much and I am praying that she can be healed and can put this behind her.

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It makes some of this drama on this week's episode even more difficult for me to watch, especially seeing my daughter's health compromised. I'm not proud of the way Alexis, Tamra, and I have been fighting. Frequent arguments are not a part of my "normal reality." As we have all said before, TV reality seems to bring out "camera balls" and I just don't understand why. How can anyone think that a bunch of grown women fighting is fun to watch? I sure don't.

As I mentioned in last week's blog, I invited Briana with me to San Francisco for several reasons. She had just told me about her thyroid nodules and I really didn't want to leave her home alone. I knew she needed my support and strength and I felt she would be a "buffer" for any drama that would come my way. Who would have known that Alexis would pull her "stint" at the lunch table while we were having a nice time! I definitely think Alexis was trying to get "camera time" and was trying to turn Tamra and Lynne against me. I thought leaving the table was the right thing to do, because I thought if I stayed there I might say something to Alexis that I would later regret. It's obvious she doesn't respect me, and I surely don't respect her. For her to instigate drama with my daughter present for NO reason was disgusting, disrespectful and embarrassing.


Briana and I are very close and if anyone ever did that to her, I would react the same way she did to defend me. When she told Alexis, "I'm 22 years old and my friends don't even do this," it was a way to tell Alexis, "GROW UP!"

I've been asked to talk about my friendship with Tamra and if I'm skeptical about where her loyalties lay. I really don't know how to answer that, because although I will admit Tamra said some VERY hurtful things, I still like Tamra and wish her the best. She told me after the fact that she was torn between Simon and me and that she was sorry, but I still don't think she had to be as mean as she was. We had a "pinky swear" we would have each other's back this season so it was very hurtful when I saw her talking about me that way. I would never speak about her the way she did about me. I guess that's the difference between us.

It was fun hearing Gretchen ask her parents what their secrets were to a successful marriage. Personally, I think there are a lot of things that make a successful marriage - NOT just one or two tips. If anyone reading this blog is married, you know that the marriage has its ups and downs. I don't believe in staying in a dysfunctional marriage. Donn and I have been very fortunate to be able to work out our problems and realize that we are good people who want the same thing in life. We want to be respected, we want to have the same interests, we agree to disagree and we are "family" and we love each other. When I was getting divorced from my first husband I went through many months of counseling to be sure it was the right thing to do for my children and myself. I remember the counselor sitting across from me and telling me that I cannot change anyone but myself. I have the power to change if I want to, but I cannot change anyone else. That was powerful to me, because I was always trying to change Mike. I was hoping he was going to be a better father and a better husband. I tried to get him to stop drinking, to stop smoking, and to come home after work instead of going to the bar When I realized I couldn't change him, I knew it was time to get divorced, because I couldn't live with who he was. I wasn't happy. When the counselor said, "I believe if you have the 3 A's in your marriage - Addiction, Adultery and Abuse - it's OK to get divorced." When I realized I had all three, it was the green light to file for divorce. I talk quite extensively about this in my book More than a Housewife. I talk about the strength it took for me to ask my first husband for a divorce, my struggles being a single mom, and my search to find a career that would allow me to support myself and my children. Since I didn't get any child support, I knew I could only depend on myself and NO ONE else. It was powerful and the best thing I ever did to improve my life. If you're interested in purchasing my book, please put in the promotion code "FACEBOOK" and you will receive $5.00 off. I guarantee it will be one of the best books you read all year. (


It's been nice to get back to a sense of normalcy with my family and Coto Insurance by not filming. During the months of filming it's very stressful trying to keep yourself together, your family time together and your business all intact. I am so proud that Coto Insurance is growing by leaps and bounds. I now have Michael and two of his college graduate friends working at the office (Rees and Brandon), Heidi, Sue, Danielle, David and our new addition Doug Lorenzen. (Do I hear a Woo hoo?!) We have now grown to over 850 licensed life agents across the country and Coto Insurance is becoming a household name. If you or your family member or anyone else you know does not have life insurance, please visit my website for a free quote. The term life insurance rates have actually decreased over the past few years and we would be happy to provide you with a free quote. If you are one of the 85 million people who does not have life insurance, I highly recommend you obtain it. Unfortunately, there is a 100% chance you will pass away - you just don't know when. What would your family do if something unforeseen were to happen to you? ( In addition to working in life insurance, I have spent the last five years becoming a retirement specialist. If you are in the retirement red zone (currently retired or five years from retirement) or if you have a 401K and are no longer contributing, please contact me. I am a Master Elite IRA specialist, a member of MDRT Top of the Table, and passionate about my clients peace of mind in retirement. If you are looking for a "safe money" account where your principle is guaranteed, please visit Coto Financial Planning and submit your information there and I will get back to you.

If you are unemployed or currently looking for a career change, WE ARE HIRING! Please contact us on our website about "Becoming an Agent" and we will be sure to get back to you as soon possible.

Thank you for all of your prayers and well wishes for my daughter Briana. I am confident she will receive a benign test result because of the power of prayer! Have a great week.

Woo hoo!

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