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At Least a Seven

Gretchen discusses her and Slade's comedy debut and what it means for the group.

By Gretchen Rossi

Wow this was an intense episode for many reasons, but especially between Slade and I.

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We start with Vicki and Tamra in the kitchen, which was a hilarious scene to me. Vicki was so funny making fun of Tamra and I talking 12 times a day, going shopping, etc. Vicki said to Tamra she is so happy her and I are friends, but was it just me or were you not believing her for one second? LOL. I love how Tamra kept calling Vicki out about being full of it when it came to loving Alexis all of a sudden. Vicki has never really been a huge fan of myself or Alexis, so it was obvious she was just saying those things in spite to Tamra.

Heather was not afraid to assert her voice when she meet with Alexis, which makes me understand a little bit better why there started to be a little rift between these two. I felt like I was watching two peacocks fluff their feathers to see who had the bigger ones.

I completely get where Tamra was coming from when she was talking with Eddie about her life and moving in together. I have encouraged Tamra all season to be her own woman and do something for herself before she jumps back into something. I know how difficult it has been for her, but I'm proud of her for stepping back for a minute and listening to her own self for once and deciding that she doesn't want a man to take care of her. Being financially sound as a woman is the best advice I could give anyone. I was a very successful business woman right out of college, then when I meet Jeff I walked away from it to be with him. It all seemed perfect until he got sick. I became his full time care taker and could not work. When I lost him, it was the scariest position to be in. I promised myself I would never allow myself to be in that position again, and thus that's the reason you see me working so hard and determined to be settled with my own stuff before I take the next step of marriage again.

Slade's mom is a hoot, however I don't think you get the full picture of how supportive his Mom really was and is of Slade. When I saw the footage of her saying "Nooooooooo" to Slade asking me to marry him, I called her right away and questioned why she said that. She said that Slade had promised me and my parents that he would have his stuff worked out before we got married, which I understand. Then I said, "But we could always have a very long engagement. . .right?" LOL. She agreed with me.

Watching Vicki talking with Brianna was endearing. Brianna is such a good kid and full of insight, and Vicki certainly is a proud parent. Brianna is brutally honesty with her mom about some things she recognizes about her patterns, which I think is good insight. With that said, I always have such a difficult time monitoring my emotions when it comes to Vicki and her situations. Of course, my heart hurts when I watch a parent get so sad over the thought of their child being sick, especially with cancer, however it ignited my emotions when I watched the two of them discuss Brianna's condition.

I find it frustrating to watch how much Vicki freaks out about even the word "cancer" when it comes to her own child, yet seems to lack the same empathy and compassion when it come to others who have cancer stricken loved ones, in particular Slade and I. When Vicki is saying how difficult it is to think about them cutting open Brainna's neck and possibly finding cancer (which I can completely understand) I wonder if in that moment she even considers how hard that has been on Slade who's son actually has cancer and has had his head cut open 10 different times for major surgery.

Unfortunately, her actions are constantly proving to me that somehow she always believes her situation is more important than anyone else's. The crazy part is that even despite the harsh and incorrect things said about Slade not being a good dad or a "deadbeat" (as she liked to put it at times), I still find compassion for her and would not wish what Slade or I have been through on my worst enemy. I wish when she was making such horrible statements she could put herself in Slade's shoes and think about the fact that it's already scary and hard enough to deal with your child being sick, let alone having someone claim you are a bad or deadbeat parent on top of that pain. It's moments like this that make me realize why Slade has so much hurt and pain still. Remember, I am explaining my frustrations and emotions because this exact hypocrisy may lead to things later on. . .

Also I think this is a good time to address some of the messages that I have been receiving saying that I have turned against Slade by making amends with some of the woman. You will see fairly quickly in these next few episodes that no matter what, my loyalty is and will always be with Slade. I will always have his back, and I will always fight for him when necessary. Otherwise I will allow him to fight his own battles.

As you can see this whole Improv show became a much more stressful event then what I had hoped for. It started off as me supporting and helping Slade by agreeing to host the night, and then all of a sudden I was pulled into doing some stand-up with him. I was beyond anxious about it, but I am always up for a challenge, so I went for it. Unfortunately since the Improv show was an hour long you couldn't see the whole thing. . . and so you missed a lot of our jokes. However let me set the record straight -- the show was sold out and the laughs were rolling all night (Yes, even for Slade and I). Of course we had a few bits that didn't go over as well as we hoped for, however it was our first time ever and that was bound to happen.

Overall the show was a huge success -- so much so that the owner of all the Improvs across the country came up to us afterwards and asked us to tour the show and manage Slade. Needless to say, if the show was a bust that opportunity wouldn't of happened and we wouldn't have already performed at three other clubs since then. Bottom line, it takes guts to get up on a comedy stage and put yourself out there (as you could tell because I went to the bathroom 27 times before I went up), and I am beyond thrilled and proud of Slade for his courage to just go for it. How many people get to say that they performed on the world famous Improv stage anyhow?

Obviously Slade's set caused some turmoil between him and I. I was trying to make amends with Tamra at this point, so I had every right to be frustrated with his content. However, on another hand, I actually really understood where he was coming from. Just because I am ready to forgive and move on doesn't automatically mean he is too. I have to respect that. Even though I didn't agree with his content, he is his own person and has to deal with his emotions how he sees fit. I know the woman have said a lot of hurtful and untrue things about who he is as a father without knowing all the details or facts (as Tamra openly admitted at our first lunch together) so Slade's emotions are understandable.

It was so great to see Alexis, Jim, Sarah, and Kurt in the audience that night. It meant a lot to Slade and I that they were there to support us and laugh. Although I found it so surprising when Alexis came back to the green room and thought Slade's jokes about the girls were so funny and said, "Well they deserve it after all the crap they have talked about Slade." It was actually what made me think twice about being so upset at him. However once we got back in the car I just got so frustrated because I knew I was going to get the backlash from his content. I just didn't want to be in the middle of it.


Heather and Terry were very positive about our performance, not only that night, but many times after that, stating "No, I'm serious guys, you were really really good." So I was a little surprised and disappointed to hear Heather only give us a three and a four, since in person she always made us feel like we were at least a 7. LOL.

Well needless to say this Improv show leads to a lot of ruckass in the group. . .and guess what? You guys are just going to have to watch and see what happens!!

Thanks again for all the support and love every week on my personal website, Facebook, and Twitter. I read all your messages and try to respond as best I can!

'Till next week
Gretchen Christine

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