Monday, May 31, 2010

Thank you...

I know I said I wasn't going to write anymore but there has been such an outpouring of love and support I simply had to use this as a forum to say thank you. ALL of your words of encouragement and your suggestions have been taken to heart. By me at least. I've bought a book and a DVD suggested by a very dear friend whose opinion I value. I can't say he'll watch or read with me. To be honest I doubt he will. At least not right now

I have no idea what the future holds. I have no idea if my marriage is savable. But I refuse to give up without trying EVERYTHING first. I want to be able to say to myself and my children that I tried, with everything I have in me, to make my marriage work.

So thank you, all of you, from the bottom of my heart.

Several of you have asked me not to leave FB. I don't know what I'm going to do about it right now. At the very least I'll be scarce for some time. But I promise I won't make any decisions hastily.

Ok I lied...

THIS will be my last blog. At least for a very long while....

This was written by my husband. Four years ago. Just days after he found out... THIS is the ONE time in our entire marriage where he expressed himself emotionally. The man he is now? I don't know who he is. He's cold and cruel. He has NO compassion for anyone. Death doesn't even move him.

Anyway... HE wrote this.. in October of 2006.

From Husband to Wife
Current mood:Mixed
Category: Romance and Relationships

For those of you who don't know me I am Skip, husband of Michelle, but I believe that you all know that. That being said this blog is for the LOVE of my life, and to let the world know how I feel.

I just wanted the world to know how much I love my wife, but mainly I wanted her to know!!!! Everyone knows that we have had our ups and downs, things have been as bad as they have been good, but through all of it we are still together and I LOVE THE SHIT OUT OF HER!!!!!!

I know I am not the best at showing my feelings and I am not the most verbal person, but I swear from this day forward I will let her and the WORLD know that SHE is the most important person in the world to me!!!!!!!!!

Why do I Love her so much you ask? Well that's one of the reasons I am here, although I can only touch on this subject I will do my best. (Michelle is the writer, this is my 1st attempt)

1st and foremost she is my backbone, she supports me both physically and emotionally, she has always been there for me through thick and thin, good and bad.

She is the mother of my children, she cares for them, carves their little lives turning them into great kids! She's not just a stay at home mom, she makes things work!!!!!! She keeps us all in line with what needs to be done, WE COULD NEVER SURVIVE WITHOUT HER!!!

She is one of the most BEAUTIFUL AND SEXY women that I have EVER known!

There are so many things going thru my mind that I can't keep up with it. I just can't say enough, like I said before she is the writer (and one of the best I've seen, I think she should do it professionally, you should all encourage her to do so).

We have been kicked off the horse once again but we have gotten back on the saddle, no horse is going to break us apart!!!!!

On a side note to my family, I want all of you to know that Michelle is my wife and will always be, I LOVE HER AND ALWAYS WILL, and if you all want to be a part of this family unit you better start stepping it up, there is too much bullshit going on in this family and it's not going to effect my family anymore! Godparents, Aunts, Uncles, etc… if you want to know this family start making some effort, visit and acknowledge that we exist or no one will have the pleasure of knowing this family, a caring family that is there for those who deserve it.

Sorry that I went off on that tirade, but I have let that one go on way too long and its stopping now!!!

Anyway... if you haven't figured it out yet, I love my wife with all my heart and always will! But this is meant more for her than you, sorry she is more important.

Michelle I LOVE YOU!

Your husband, your lover and most of all your soul mate. Skip

(grammar and spelling corrected by Michelle)

Saturday, May 29, 2010

I prayed all week....

That this morning would come and I'd wake up to him telling me it was all a big joke that he loved me and had made big plans for our anniversary. Apparently that isn't part of God's plan. Because this morning dawned and he couldn't even muster the emotion up to mutter "Happy Anniversary" in my general direction let alone acknowledge the day with a gift or card.

I can say with absolute certainty that I now know what a broken heart feels like. It's.... I can't even come up with a word adequate enough to describe how much it hurts.

And I just have one question.... when will it stop?

Friday, May 21, 2010


I seriously wonder about my oldest child at times. He's seventeen and a half. He'll be a senior in high school in the fall. And he has absolutely NO ambition beyond eating, sleeping and hangin' with his friends and girlfriend. The boy worries me.

Yesterday afternoon he and some friends played basketball. My son, being the brilliant genius he is, decided to play basketball barefoot. He ended up with two large blisters on the bottoms of his feet. Now instead of waiting until he got home to consult me before trying to remedy the situation himself he listened to his friend who told him to pop and peel the skin from the blisters. That this would 'help'. Can you say dumber than dirt??

So he spent last night hobbling around on his heels. A sight I find highly amusing and can't help but collapse into giggles watching him. I know.. I am sick. I get it from my mother. While I was growing up if my poor father stubbed his toe on the leg of a table or the foot of the bed resulting in him hopping around on one foot cussing under his breath, my mother and I would desperately try to hide the shrieks of laughter struggling to escape our lips. My Dad would get SO mad at us! He knew we were laughing at him. He'd yell at us and we'd laugh all the harder. I told you.. we're sick! LOL!

So this morning before sending my poor, occasionally senseless child, off to school I had to slather Neosporin on and bandage his feet so he could walk with slightly less pain. I managed to do this without laughing at him like a hyena.

What if...

I'm sitting here taking a mental trip down memory lane. Wondering if I'd done this instead of that or that instead of this just where my life might be right now. We don't realize it at the time but the smallest choice, the simplest decision, can have a lasting and profound impact on our lives.

What if I'd made just a little more of an effort in school? Had I done that I may have gone onto a four year college immediately after high school instead of community college two years later. Two years of working full time. Not that I don't have fond memories of that job and that time period.

And then what if, instead, during THAT time frame, when I was working at good ol' Clover in Center Square, I'd made some choice differently. I can think of one in particular that haunts me. And I often wonder where I'd be today if I'd chosen differently.

I've always said that regret is a useless emotion. A pound of it won't make an ounce of difference. With that said there ARE a few things in my life that I regret. A few things that, given the opportunity, I might just go back and do differently. But then I think... if I did. It would change the present. My marriage issues aside I have six beautiful children as a result of this marriage. For that I will always be grateful and will always, in some way, love their father. No matter how this journey we're on ends up.

So that brings me back to regret being a useless emotion. It doesn't stop me, however, from wondering every so often. What if...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

More books...

I'm reading again. Something I haven't taken pleasure in for some time. I just finished Sarah's Key by Tatiana De Rosnay. Excellent book. As a general rule I don't enjoy fiction or non-fiction that portrays the Holocaust. I find that the inhumanity and deprivation for human life exhibited in that dark period of history, while it should never be forgotten, is not something I need to hear or read about in detail. But this book grabbed me from the very first chapter. I had a hard time putting it down and finished it in record time even for me.

I'm now reading The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls. A personal memoir of her childhood that I find fascinating, if not just a little disturbing. I'm at the midway point and it has me completely hooked.

Highly recommend both of these books!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Cherishing what you have...

I've always been a sensitive person. My earliest memories of school are of feeling shy and out of place and not fitting in. I wasn't athletic. I wasn't outgoing. My preferred activities were solitary or something that could be done within a small circle of friends. Reading, writing, listening to music, watching TV or some sort of craft.

I get my sensitivity from my father. That man will cry at the drop of a pin. He passed this trait along to me. I cry over commercials. Have you ever seen the Hallmark commercial with the husband and wife? Wife walks in, husband is hanging up the phone, turns to his wife and says, "The adoption agency needs us to come down there again.". The wife says, "Again. We've already filled out so much paperwork." or something to that effect. The husband hands his wife a card and it's something about mothers. She looks up at him and he says "It's a boy." with tears in his eyes. I'm a puddle by then. We're talking full blown tears, sniffling and at times sobbing (depending on the time of the month). I'll refrain from telling you how I cry over the Father of the Year episode of the Brady Bunch. Which I've probably seen hundreds of times in my life.

It's ridiculous really, but it's who I am. My husband and my kids love to tease me about my ability to cry with no effort whatsoever and with little control over it. Nice, huh? Yeah they can be a bunch of jerks sometimes but they're mine and I love them. At least I love my kids. My husband? Hmph. Right about now he's right there at the top of my shit list. I suppose I still love him. Though he is pushing his luck. (Which may be his intention for all I know.)

I love the show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. Now granted part of that love is I have a thing for Ty Pennington. However, I also love the concept of the show. Seeing these families living with things I couldn't dream of living through reminds me of how much I DO have to be thankful for. I'm a blubbering mess while watching it though. Tissues at the ready. Some episodes truly touch me. After those shows I have an intense need to look in on my children. And hold them. To remind myself that I am blessed. That it COULD be worse.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Other Side's Stories...

My Mom's family is as rich in stories as my father's is. She comes from a large Italian family. And for those of you who are Italian or married into an Italian family you know how Italian family gatherings are. Lots and lots of food. Italian food. Handmade from scratch by my Great Grandmother.

I remember Sunday's at Great Grandmom's house. There'd be as many as twenty or more people sitting around the table. Her house had two dining rooms and a kitchen. There was the everyday dining room and the formal dining room. They were side by side and on Sundays the tables were brought together. They stretched from the end of one dining room to the opposite end of the other dining room.

There was food aplenty. And stories. And laughter. Even as a small child I loved to sit around the table with them after dinner and dessert were through. With coffee flowing the "greats", my Grandmother's brothers and sisters, (my Great-Grandmom's children) would regal us with tales of their youth in the very house we were sitting in.

There were eight of them all together. Six girls and two boys. My Great-Grandmother had ten children but two died early in life. My Great-Grandfather was a man with a good heart but a firm hand. He didn't take any sort of nonsense from his children.

As you can imagine with THAT many children in the house there were apt to be accidents. (I can assure you that though I have two less children than they did I KNOW all about these accidents.) One morning, when they were all mostly grown and working full time, my Aunt Caroline got up as she did every morning to get ready for work. She went into the kitchen and lit the stove. Somehow... she blew it up. She was unharmed thank God but TERRIFIED of what my Great-Grandfather would do.

In a lousy attempt to cover her faux pa she began leaping around the kitchen on one foot screaming, "Daddy!!! Daddy!!! He shot me!! He shot me!!!!" My Great-Grandfather wasn't to be fooled and in a fluent swirl of Italian and English hollered "you didn't get shot!! You blew up the (insert American and Italian cuss words here.. lots of them) stove!!!"

Later that morning they all walked, a rather hefty distance from what I understand, to work as their father refused to drive them over the blown up stove. When you're one of six children everyone suffers for the misbehavior of one. It's not necessarily fair but it is what it is. Large families have a different dynamic than smaller families. It's about survival and staying one step ahead of the chaos.

When I retell this story it loses something. The throaty voices of my Grandmom, Aunts and Uncles, from years of smoking and some drinking, made the stories all the more endearing. As did they're dramatic Italian hand gestures and loud voices. Everyone around the table would be in various states of hysteria and someone was always jumping up to run to the bathroom. Unable to hold their bladder any longer.

I miss those days. I miss the little girl I was. I miss Great-Grandmom. And Grandmom. And all my Aunts and Uncles. I miss Christmas cookies at Aunt Frannie and Uncle Tut's house. I miss Sunday dinners at Great-Grandmom's house. I miss the hustle and bustle of four generations all gathered together as a family.

Of those eight children there is only one left. And sadly, some of their children (my mom and her cousins) have passed away in recent years. My own mortality slaps me in the face when I think of all the family I've lost in my lifetime. When I think about just how many years have already passed me by I can't help but feel a little sad.

So many of those years were wasted wanting the next best or bigger thing. I didn't often take time to live in the moment. And I've missed out on some things I can never get back.

"It is only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on Earth and we have no way of knowing when our time is up that we will begin to live each day to the fullest , as if it were the only one we had." ~Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

Sunday, May 16, 2010


My Grandmother should have five children. She has two. Living. My father is her firstborn. He was followed by Billy. Billy passed away, from what I understand, within twenty-four hours of his birth. The result of complications due to pneumonia.

This was in the late 40's. At that time new mothers were in for a long hospital stay. There were no private or even semi-private rooms. There were actual maternity wards. My Grandmother was left on that maternity ward. Surrounded by other Moms AND their babies. For ten days. While she mourned the loss of her son. Could anything be considered more cruel and unusual than that??

She said none of the other women spoke to her with the exception of one. That one, upon being discharged, asked my Grandmother if she would like to see her baby. No one else had thought to ask this question. While I, personally, couldn't have handled it my Grandmother welcomed it. It was the one small kindness afforded to her in those ten days. She never had another child in a hospital again. Her subsequent births were at home. I can't say I blame her.

Because she was in the hospital for ten days she missed Billy's service. She never laid eyes on Billy. She never held him. They didn't do that back in the day. So the only vision she has of her child is a picture that someone had the foresight to take of him the day of his funeral. To some that may sound morbid. I don't pass judgement. I have no idea, THANK GOD, what it's like to lose a child in such a way. I have no idea WHAT I'd do or HOW I'd handle it.

After Billy, if memory serves me correctly, my Aunt Liz came along. Healthy, happy, bundle of joy. (And a pip til' this day!) Then my Grandmother became pregnant with twins. The story I've been told goes like this...

She was seven months along. My Grandfather, a not nice man to put it mildly, pushed her down a set of stairs. Violently enough that it caused labor to start. She gave birth to twin girls at home that day. They died within minutes.

As if the push wasn't enough of an insult my Grandfather never told her where those babies were buried. Or IF they were buried at all. And, oddly enough, there are no records of their birth nor their death to my understanding. This is something I want to research though.

As I said, my Grandfather was not a nice man. I have very few memories of him because I was just 6 years old when he passed away. And I didn't learn the truth about him until I was much older. He was a cruel, sadistic, sick man who deserved to die the young death he did. Although it should have been a more painful death in my ever so humble opinion.

I have no doubt that, unless he begged forgiveness and regret at the moment before death, he resides in hell right now.

Family stories...

The things your going to read here for awhile are all true to the best of knowledge Things about my family's history. Things I've heard in upon years of stories I've been told by my parents, my Grandparents and even my Great-Grandparents. Everything within these "pages" has come from the mouths of some of the most wonderful people in my life. I take them at face value, if at times with a grain of salt.

My paternal Grandmother will be ninety years old in October. I imagine time has worn away some of the details in her mind and she has filled those in to the best of her ability. However, I have no doubt that the core of what she is telling me is 100% fact. For a woman of her age she is still sharp. Her body is beginning to falter at times, but she's still playing with a full deck of cards. May I be HALF that sharp if I live that long.

She has buried two husbands, three children, her parents, her brother and countless friends. One of her children died shortly after birth. (And there's a story there, one that gets me SO fired up! But I'll get to that in a later blog.) The other two, a set of twins, were born two months prematurely. They were born at home and died within minutes of their birth. (Another story here that gets me fired up.)

Those two events alone would render me a walking, barely functioning zombie, drugged up on every anti-depressant known to man. My Grandmother survived both and so many more trials and tragedies. Some so horrifying I can't even begin to imagine living through them. Stories that begin like hers don't always have a happy ending. But hers, for all it's bumps and bruises, has. And she's still smiling. She still finds joy in life. She still faces each day with optimism.

She is my hero...

Friday, May 14, 2010


For as far back as I can remember I have loved books. I devour them. When I'm reading I become completely immersed in the story. My husband and children can be standing two feet away from me saying my name in a perfectly normal tone of voice and I don't hear them. I don't even see them because I am IN the pages of the book. It takes finger snaps and hands waving in my face to break my reverie.

And it REALLY annoys me. Honestly, unless the house is burning down around me, someone is bleeding to the point that death is imminent or a limb has been severed there really is NO reason to disturb me while I'm reading. You'll only serve to get yourself snarled at. And risk bodily harm when I realize that you interrupted me to ask me where some inane object, that has no significance whatsoever to me, is. Look. For. It. Seriously. God gave you two healthy eyes. Use them!

Books are my escape from reality. They served me well through a tumultuous childhood and an angst filled term in hell. Otherwise known as my teen years. I am always blown away when someone tells me they would love to "go back to high school" just for a day. WHY????? My high school years were so far from fabulous that fabulous wasn't even visible off in the distance. There was a brief period of time, during my sophomore year, where I can honestly say I was truly happy and it didn't last long enough.

But I digress...

Books. Reading. According to my mother I was reading simple sentences by the time I was 4. I question her memory sometimes but if she says I was 4, I was 4. My memory of that time of my life is fuzzy at best.

I can spend hours browsing in the library or a bookstore. And left to my own devices I can easily drop $100-$200 on books in a day. I don't do that all too often because my husband would have my head. Ya' see.. I can read an entire full length novel in under twenty-four hours. I go through phases where I literally finish a book a day for weeks on end. I have a pile of "to be read" books that is somewhat obscene in it's size so I have plenty of material to choose from. And yet... I still bought NINE books today.

Don't have a cow dear.. six of those were bought at Gently Used Books for about $2 each after my store credit from the large box of books I brought with me to trade in. I love to buy books but I'm frugal to a fault. (I also bought quite a few books for the kids.)

So those nine books are sitting next to me and I'm going to pick one... and lose myself in someone else's story. Because my own is too difficult to focus on right now

How are things....

It's marriage. It's up, it's down. We're in a holding pattern right now. We're not about to kill one another but we're not exactly thrilled with the others attitude and behavior. We'll get over it. Eventually. If the past is any indication of the future. It's proven to be so in the past. And, for now, I'm holding onto the hope it will be again.

I have to learn to sit back and take it one day at a time. That's not an easy feat for me. I don't like the unknown. It makes me edgy. I like knowing there's going to be a soft place to land within my home and my husband's arms. The thought of life without that is very scary to me.

I don't want to push him into choices and decisions. So I'm trying, at times faltering, to let him be with his thoughts and feelings. I can't make him do anything. I have no control over his actions. I do, however, have control over mine.

So I'm focusing on me and my needs and wants. As well as working on changing those things that need changing for the good of my whole family. I'm figuring out that if we don't take care of ourselves we're no good to anyone else.

Says the woman who is wide awake at 1:38 AM with no intentions of going to sleep tonite... baby steps... slow, sure baby steps.

Monday, May 10, 2010

A development...

I've had a few "reality checks" in the last week or so. Everyone has problems. Everyone thinks their problems are more difficult then the next guy's. We're all wrong. MOST problems are only as difficult as they are perceived to be. Then there are true tragedies. The death of a child, a terminal illness in a loved one. These are real tragedies. And my problems pale in comparison.

I don't know what the future holds. I don't know if my marriage is savable. I hope and pray with all my heart that it is. Because when it comes right down to it I love my husband. I love my family. I want to be able to say in seven years, "I've been married twenty-five years.". I am not going to just lay down and give up without a fight.

So I'm fighting. Starting with counseling and a few "stipulations". He agreed to all but one small stipulation. I'm trying hard not to make too big of a deal out of that one. It bothers me. More than I care to admit. But I'm not so unreasonable that I can't compromise. I do however reserve the right to revisit the matter later.

I know there are things in myself I need to change. I've never been one to claim I was perfect (close to it but.. I'm KIDDING!!!! Sheesh!). I have my faults and God knows there's plenty of them. And I'm more than willing to work on them. I don't know if counseling will help our marriage. But I hope it will help me.

I'm going to try not to force so many issues. I'm going to try and be laid back and just see where this all goes.. (STOP laughing Skip!) It's going to take effort. But I'm going to try. And the rest?? I'm kissing up to God.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Just a lil' update...

First of all I want to thank everyone for the personal messages and well wishes.  They were very much appreciated.  I tried to answer each one individually but I may have missed a few here and there.  So if I missed you I apologize.  It wasn't intentional.. 

I have put my foot down and insisted we go to a marriage counselor. I've already called one and am waiting on a call back.  I want to be able to say that yes I DID try everything in my power to save my marriage.   I refuse to accept that I have to walk away from nearly eighteen years (together) without a fight. 

He's agreed, grudgingly, to the counseling.  I don't know that it'll do any good.  To be honest, I'm inclined to believe that it won't.  At least not to the marriage.  But maybe it will do ME some good.  And if it ends up being beneficial to him as well, all the better.  But I'm not really worried about him right now.  I need to think about me for a little while.

My heart is still breaking.  I'm struggling minute by minute to keep the breakdowns at bay.  But I'm not denying myself a good old fashioned cry now and then.  Some consider tears weak.  I don't.

"There is a sacredness in tears.  They are not the mark of weakness but of power.  They are messengers of overwhelming grief and unspeakable love." 

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

It's over...

What little hope I was clinging to is gone.  I've been told that he's no longer in love with me, hates coming home to me and doesn't enjoy spending with me.  I'm heartbroken.  And numb.

I'm done blogging for now.  I have nothing else to say right now and any more blogs would be redundant.   My world has been turned completely upside down.

Monday, May 3, 2010

I'm tired....

My entire life I have been driven by my feelings.  Logic and realism rarely come into play when I'm faced with choices.  I do everything I do based on strong emotions.  It's who I am.  It has not always served me well but it has gotten me to where I am today.  Albeit, somewhat damaged but still in one piece and still kickin'. 
I seesaw back and forth between wanting this charade to end, and wanting to hang onto my marriage for dear life.  I love him.  I love our kids.  They can drive me out of mind at times but they're still the reason I was born and the reason that I wake up everyday and start all over again.  Despite the overwhelming urge to crawl back into bed, curl into the fetal position and stay there forever. 
There is so much I want and need to say to him but it never seems to come out the way I intend it unless I write it.  But if I write it, my tone and emotion get lost and I rarely get any feedback from him.  So I'm left wondering if he really read my words, skimmed them or opened the e-mail or letter, saw the novel and deleted/trashed it.  With an exasperated sigh and a roll of his eyes, I'm sure.  I know him so well. 
I have moments where I think "We're going to be ok." and other moments where I look at him and I know, down to my very core, that I've already lost him and it's too late to go back.  I can't shake the feeling that there is someone else for him.  In some capacity.  And I hate feeling like that.  I hate this imagined woman.  He has sworn to me on more than one occasion that there is no one else.  But I don't know if I believe him.  I want too...  but my gut is screaming at me to open my eyes.  I'm just not sure what I'm supposed to be looking for. 
I am so tired.  Tired of being in limbo, tired of crying, tired of not knowing where my life is heading...  I'm just plain tired. 

It was inevitable..

I watch him get his coffe, gather up his keys and lap top case.  He does a quick look around and says, 'Well..  I'm off.' I nod or say 'ok' and he walks out the door.  I hear the door close and he's gone.  I'm left feeling empty and disconnected.  He used to kiss me good-bye.  He used to say 'love you'..  Now there is only silence.  The tears come. 
I knew they would.  I knew the brief reprieve the Gods gave me from my emotional turmoil would eventually have to come to an end.  I felt it starting Saturday night as our last guests said goodnight and went home.  The preparation for the Communion was consuming enough that I was able to push the uncertainty about my marriage aside for a little while. 
That distraction is gone and there is nothing pressing on the horizon that needs so much of my attention that I can forget again for awhile.  So I cry.  I sob.  And for a little while I'll feel better letting it all out.  I'll go about my day and try to think and behave positively.  Until the next time I feel the need to cry. 
I wish I could tell you that we've at least had A single discussion about "our marriage".  We haven't.  We've avoided it like the plague to be honest with you.  We're no closer to a resolution than we were a few weeks ago.  I have no idea if he even thinks about our marriage and it's issues.  Though I do have serious doubts that he's bursting into tears at random points during the day. 
I feel like I have absolutely no direction right now.  I can't see any further ahead than each day.  I don't want to think about the future.  Not right this second.  He's apparently had time to get used to all of this.  He told me he hasn't been happy in a long time.  Gee, thanks for sharing that bit of information with me.  Had I known, I may have been able to save us a lot of heartache and he could even be free and single by now.  (yes I AM being sarcastic)
I know..  aren't I a ray of sunshine on this rainy, damp Monday morning??  Didn't it rain last Monday as well??  Rainy Mondays should be outlawed.  A Monday is hard enough to adjust too.  Adding rain is my definition of cruel and unusual punishment. 
And on that note I'm off to begin my usual morning chaos

Saturday, May 1, 2010


Seriously??  Today???  IT arrives today???? 
I repeat..  What DID I do to offend the Gods?? 
Mother Nature couldn't have waited a mere twenty-four hours before handing over my monthly blessing????? 
And my skirt for church is WHITE!!!!! 
Someone shoot me now...