Forgive and Forget

You know how the saying goes, “I forgive, but I don’t forget.”

Makes sense.. you let things go from your heart, but you remember the people that hurt you and keep your guard up in the future. Smart.

However, my mom lives by the opposite sayings in many of life situations.

For example, when I was 14 years old and had just started my first serious relationship, my friends were missing me.

Me-“Mom, Jennifer says we haven’t hung out since I started dating Greg, but Greg wants to come over tonight. Should I tell him no and have a sleepover with my friends?”

Mom-“Honey, Friends come and go, but boys last forever”

I lost a lot of friends that summer and over the years of adolescence ditching them for my boyfriends.

It wasn’t until years later that I realized that all other moms in the ENTIRE world, told their daughters the exact opposite… it really goes, “Boys come and go, but FRIENDS last forever!”

So… back to forgiving and forgetting… not that she consciously does this.. but, I’m almost certain that my mom Never forgives, but Always forgets!!

This unconscious life motto leaves her heart hardened and confused. She’s always mad at someone, but never remembers who or why… which, then lead to explosive family gatherings after she’s had too much to drink. She lashes out on the wrong person about the wrong things and wakes up the next day as if it never happened.

How do you deal with someone that never forgives… but, constantly forgets??

Any advice here would be greatly appreciated!! =)

For now… I’ll take it, like I do many of my troubles and laugh at the irony.

Forgetting and never forgiving seems much more difficult for her than me.

So, maybe I shouldn’t complain?

Chapter 2

Chapter 2
Six months before the wedding
January 5th 2007

My sister Nicole’s father, Henry Miller, came from old money. His great-great grandfather invented the stop light or some other random, yet uber necessary commodity of life. Now, the Miller family just makes money off their money. Even after his passing, Nicole’s extended family and grandparents always helped my mom take care of Nicole. I was not so lucky.

My father, Anthony Ricardi, was our mothers high school boyfriend, turned fuckbuddy. She was sleeping with him shortly after Henry’s passing to help her grieve. When she got knocked up with me, they had to marry. Before my 1st birthday, they were both cheating on each other.

Even though they were both at fault for the destruction of their marriage, they never ceased to blame one another and drag me into the middle to use as a punching bag to warm up to their fights. Due to their inability to get along and my father’s constant struggle financially, causing him to lapse often on child support, I saw very little of him growing up.

Throughout my life, my dad had done so little for me, that I was in shock when he agreed to pay for half of my wedding. I barely knew the man, but I really looked up to him. Once he married his wife Linda and finally ‘grew up’ as my mom would say. Now he had the kind of life, I always wanted. He had a new, big beautiful home, a loving wife and two perfect kids. His life was so perfect-looking it made me wish I had it. I felt like Paul and I could have that life someday and if we spent more time around him, we could figure out how.

Paul and I had so much in common. Not only did we grow up in the same neighborhood (outside of DC in a little town called Brentwood), and socio-economic class (dirt poor) and we both grew up without a father around. Well, he had no father; I had five. Before I graduated high school, my mother had been married and divorced five times. Paul had attended weddings four, five and six. I knew I did not want to be like her, which is why I was so scared to disappoint my dad and mess up the relationship with the man both Paul and I admired.

The night before my dad’s two-thousand-dollar check came in the mail, Paul and I had a huge fight. I, honestly, can’t even remember what it was about. It had something to do with dishes, or maybe it was the trash. All I remember is that he woke up, still angry that day and left without saying goodbye. What can never be forgotten was what my mom said to me that day in response to said fight and post-fight wedding jitters.

Driving up 295 N, headed to Martins West to deposit the check, sitting in stop-and-slow traffic, I called my mom. When she answered the phone, “Tank you fo callin china foortun” in her silly Chinese accent, I knew she was in a good mood.

“Hey, guess what I have in my hand?” I asked giggling at her goofy greeting.

“A big, black dick?” my mom shocked me with her answer.

“What? No! What the fuck?” I was really confused and slightly amused.

“Did you know that black guys have black dicks?” She asked another bizarre question.

“Yes, mom, I know that. Everyone knows that.” I told her as I wondered why she didn’t know that or more importantly why did now.

“I didn’t!… anyway, what do you have?” She quickly jumped back on point.

“A two-thousand-dollar check from my dad,” I said, nervously because I could never guess what her reaction would be when I brought up my dad. Sometimes she playfully made fun of him and other times, she would go on an hour-long bitch-fest about how bad of a father he was to me. I hoped that because I was telling her something good he did, it would be the former.

“wow! great… he actually came through this time. I’m surprised, but happy for you!” She said, sounding genuinely happy for me, which was rare.

“But… I don’t know… I’m nervous to turn it in. We had a big fight last night and Paul left this morning without saying bye. What if he doesn’t want to marry me anymore? If we cancel the wedding after this, dad loses all of this money, right?”

“Oh, Iza baby… everything will be fine. I promise. Paul loves you.” She stated as a matter of fact.

“but… what if I don’t want to marry him?” I continued.

“you will… look, I’ve done this before… I’m kinda an expert, right? So, you have to trust me on this. Everything will work out fine.”

“I know… But, that’s my point. What if I’m really messed up from all of that and I can’t go through with it. I don’t ever want to get divorced. So, if that means never getting married, I’m okay with that. I mean… being with just one person for your entire life? It’s unrealistic and an ancient tradition started back during a time when the life expectancy was only 50. The chances of us actually being together forever are so small.” I tried to reason my way through my fears.

“Baby… forever doesn’t mean forever-forever… forever just means forever-right-now” she attempted to explain the most confusing logic even for her.

“What? That doesn’t even make sense, mom” I said as I looked for my cigarettes.

“Look… every time I get married, I can honestly tell myself that I want to be with that person ‘forever’ and I know that I mean it at that moment. In that moment, I know I will love them forever. So, forever doesn’t mean forever-forever, it means forever-right-now, get it?”
I was far from understanding her logic, but I assumed that she meant we should get married. But, since I’ve learned to never assume with my mom, I asked anyway, “do you think we’ll get married? That we should get married?”

“Do you love him?” she asked, finally, a simple question.

“Yes,” I answered, relieved.

“Does he love you?” she asked.

“Yes… I think” I was starting to see where she was going.

“Then… that’s all that matter, right? That’s your forever-forever answer right there,” she laughed at herself and her ridiculousness, “but… seriously… forever just means that you both love each other, and you want to be together forever. Everything will be fine, I promise. Everyone knows that you two should be together and everyone knows you’ll get married. You’ve waited long enough and it’s time! okay?”

“okay, thanks” Even though her actual words made little sense, she won the argument, because she was right. We did love each other. He was the love of my life. We grew up together and went from best friends to first loves, living together to now. Of course, we would get married. When I decided, 5 years ago to wait until marriage to have sex, Paul agreed without question. This was especially surprising because he knew I did not want to wait for religious reasons. I explained that I wanted to wait because I didn’t want to end up like my mother, thinking the grass was always greener and what not. This was true, but not the reason.

Get out of my head!!!!!

Ugh… every time I try to sit down and write, I hear my mother’s words,

“no one cares!” — about reading a memoir written by me (well MOM, my current editor and publisher beg to differ because they read it…LOVED it and said that many people will, in fact CARE!!

Just because you don’t

… doesn’t mean others won’t!!

Get the fuck Up, Out my head

… you won’t ruin this one, again, one which you haven’t even Read!!

The saddest thing I’ve ever read was the poetry book I found that I wrote when I was 12-13 years old…. I was writing poems on a daily basis… about love, friendship, school, Cheer, my teddy bear.. anything and everything I cared about… I would write these rhyming, flowing poems/raps about everything & I remember it all coming to me so easy and I remember all of my friends loving to hear them… I remember when I read them to my dad and his wife… she cried… she asked how I could write something so “deep and moving” at such a young age… & she told me I would be a writer someday.. something I hadn’t even considered… this gave me the courage & confidence to finally read them to you….

I forgot the way you laughed at me… how you told me that writers make no money and I would never be a writer.. to give up that dream now… I forgot all of that until I read this poetry book and the poem called “hope” which is about how quickly someone can take your hope.

That was the last poem I wrote in that book… the following journal entry was about how I couldn’t write anymore poems.. I was trying and trying and I couldn’t make anything rhyme. So, instead I just wrote one last journal entry about how you had just hit me over the head with a bible, whilst screaming that I needed to “be nicer to my sister” when all I had done was try to switch bedrooms with her… I was tired of living in the moldy, dark basement, feeling like I wasn’t part of the family… but, when you got home and found her crying down there… saying she was scared and didn’t want her room down there… you beat the shit out of me… in front of my boyfriend & friends who had helped me rearrange the rooms (which …by the way… she agreed to & said nothing to us about changing her mind)

You have always protected her with a fierce and violent rage …. so, imagine my fear now… I have to tell the world something that could… no, something that SHOULD majorly alter her life!!

Her husband is a cheater!! And worse… he is a rapist!! Her husband violently raped me, repeatedly & due to years, upon years of growing up in a house that was always violently biased to protect her at all costs.. I knew that I could not tell anyone.. I knew that you, nor her would believe me… and I knew it would end what little we had left of the thing I try to call family!

The most fucked up part… I’ve told people.. I have written my story and I am believed.. my story is wanted.. they think they can sell this story and I STILL HEAR YOUR WORDS IN MY HEAD!!

“No one will care”… no one will believe me.. I will lose everything.. well, guess what?? He’s already taken everything I care about.. he’s already taken you and her and her kids that I was pressured to help raise, yet never treated as family… only as a babysitter… I have already lost you all… so, I ask you this now??

What do I have left to lose???

Why am I actually considering changing my name and not putting my name and my face on MY book?? On MY STORY!?!

Ps-to any of the 73, 431 people out there that have already read this blog… what should I do?? Should I change my name?? Should I stay hidden when I publish this memoir?? Or should I be brave and just tell the world the truth?? I need help.. I need advice here… you can private message me if you prefer as so many of you have already done.. and let me know what you think!?!

Thank you all for the support and love you have already sent my way.. I can’t tell you how much it means to me to know I am no longer alone… to know that you have listened to my story and that you believe me… it means more than words could ever describe so I won’t even bother trying!

Gratefully,

“Izalita” –for now 😉

This is Really Happening!?!

I heard back from the publisher and they are interested in my book….HOWEVER… they want me to turn my fictionalized version into a memoir… they said “the passion and clarity appear more so in certain chapters which we believe are the chapters based on the true story. We know you must have enjoyed writing the fantastical ending, however, if you could rewrite this into a memoir and focus on your true story, we believe this would be a more relatable therefore more sellable book.”

Holy fucking shit… so… this is happening… they want the true story!?! The only problem!?! My real story has such a shitty ending right now…

“And for the last few years, I have been hiding and living in silence.. scared to tell my truth.. the end”

It was so much more rewarding to kill the bad guy… but, at the same time… I can see how that is not as believable. Fuck me…. I’ve got to figure out how to write this as a memoir that doesn’t completely fuck up all the innocent people in my life… my kids and my sister’s kids…..

Changing my name is a start, right??

Hi… my name is, now officially, Izalita Ricardi, nice to meet you!!

For the sake of discussing everyone from here on out… I’ll tell you the character names in the book which will be the names I use in the memoir….

My moms name is Nicole (aka Nica)

My sister’s name is also Nicole (yes, named after my mother… in hopes that she would be her one and only perfect child and the perfect mold of herself)

My sister’s husbands name is Chris (aka Chrissy)

And although they were not in the original fictional version of the story… I assume, my daughters might have to be included in the memoir… even if not… I will continue to discuss them in this blog.. so, my daughters names are

Savanna (aka V– long story;) (18 years old) &

Camille (aka Cami) (15 years old)

I guess that’s all for now… I’ll give other people names as needed… but, just as a general disclaimer… as you’re reading this blog and in the future, my memoir, understand that all names have been changed in order to protect the truly innocent human beings (children) because they don’t deserve to know about any of this until the time is right. This is the reason I have stayed silent for so long.. but, I’m so happy I found an editor and (now-I can’t fucking believe it) a PUBLISHER.. that will help me tell my TRUE story while still keeping me and all 4 kids that I love more than myself safe in the process!!

Feeling truly grateful right now!! Which… I must admit… it’s been awhile since I’ve felt this way… I usually say thank you to the universe for the little things in life like the puppy finally shitting outside or my black thumb finally growing fresh basil… it’s been awhile since I’ve had something really BIG to be grateful about and hopeful for!! THANK YOU!!

#MeToo anniversary

On the anniversary of the MeToo movement… where really big-names, important woman came out publicly about sexual harassment and/or rape by unrelated males… this no-one, unimportant woman is internally debating when and how to come forward about being raped by her brother-in-law…. wondering whether anyone would even care.. or believe her… wondering how it could effect her family.. her life.. or worse… if it didn’t… if she came forward and everything stayed exactly the same… nothing changed… no one cares…

Then what would happen?? What could be worse than be raped?? Hmmm… how about being raped and being forced into silence for fear that no one would believe you… or worse.. even if they did believe you.. they simply wouldn’t care… speaking from first hand experience, I can tell you… the latter is worse!

So… happy anniversary MeToo Movement!! Thank you to all the brave women that came before me & gave me the courage to come forward with my story.. perhaps.. maybe.. someday… and an even bigger thanks to those of you that can and will understand the years I spent in silence… I carried the burden of that weight upon my shoulders to protect, not only myself… but, all of the other members of my family that weren’t ready for the truth. I carried that weight and broke my back trying with every ounce of physical ability I had left to hide this secret to maintain the last bit of false pretense “family” that we had left.

I

Tried

My

Hardest

But…, the family fell apart anyway… because deep down he always knew this was coming.. he always knew the truth would surface and in preparation for this day… he convinced my family that I was the bad guy.. that I was the crazy one… he knew this day would come… and because he worked so hard to prepare… he pushed everyone away from me already, therefore… I have nothing left to lose!!

Don’t think he prepared for this…

oh

Fucking

Well

Here… I … am…. I am woman… hear my TRUTH

I was, raped

violently and

repeatedly by

my sister’s husband…

in an attempt to escape the abuse…

I packed up and moved to WV…

to protect myself and my daughters… I fled

Now…. I have been living in silence so suffocating that I no longer speak to anyone besides my daughters… days… weeks.. months and now YEARS… have gone by without a single person calling to check on me… I have disappeared into a hole of silence surrounded by walls of shame and when I look up.. I see a small sliver of light… barely… it’s more like a tiny star… barely visible to the naked eye… but, if I take out my microscope (aka… my computer) and I look closely (aka… write)… I can see it.. I can see the twinkling star in the sky… and I know… that is HOPE…

I

Have

HOPE

I hope I do anyway

What (not) to do when your child is sick…

 

I’ve struggled with this concept for many years & I really can’t figure out how my mother takes such good care of one of her daughters (allowing her to move back home after only living on her own for 3 years) with her husband and children, while completely ignoring her other daughter…. the daughter that is SICK, SINGLE & has two teenage daughters. How… How does she justify her unfair treatment? How does she leave my children alone in the hospital while I’m fighting off serious illness… literally fighting for my life with no one by my bedside other than my two young daughters.. and fuck me… how does she leave THEM (my daughters) alone… while I’m sick???

The only reason I can come up with?!?!….

…. because I’m an “addict” … remember?? See yesterday’s post please… and then, read below…

I think my mother denies my illness and justifies this behavior because she thinks I’m an addict… but, let me ask you this!?!

How could I be an addict? I have two teenage daughters that are with me 24/7, literally… especially in the summer time. We are all, always together… Do you think they’d notice if their mother was high? Not to mention, my eldest daughter and I share the same bank & she has access to my bank account. She can see, each and every month, that every penny I have goes to bills and taking care of them. I cannot remember the last time I bought myself new socks, much less went out “partying” or anything even close to adult-fun.

The whispers behind my back make me sad and worried because I had an aunt… lets call her Aunt “Mindy” and she died a few years ago and my mother & grandmother constantly whispered behind her back and said she was an addict too. The truth is, I don’t know if she was. She was a sweet and loving woman and I just think my mother didn’t like her. So, they talked shit about her behind her back and barely spoke to her. She was the black sheep of the family. Everyone turned their back on her & therefore, her children. I don’t know how/why she died, but I can’t help but feel like if she had more support from her family… she may have lived.

 

because…… Even if it was TRUE!?! Even if I was an ADDICT!?! Their response to this is to leave me alone in WV!?! To leave my daughters ALONE with me in WV!?! That is the response to a family member being an addict!?!

NO…

… my mother went to the NIH, to the family support groups for people dealing with my illness … she knows exactly what I am going through!! Which is why… until HE moved into her house… she was helping me and the girls as much as she could… and then slowly… year by year… that help grew smaller and smaller until BOOM…

eEaster 2018… yell at me for no reason.. cut us off.. (what little help she did provide which by that point was ONLY paying for the Girls homecoming/prom dresses and paying for Cheer/dance fees…. but, that was too much and right before my eldest daughter was about to graduate from HS… she told her that she had NOT even paid the dance fees throughout the year that she claimed to pay, nor help with her prom dress.. inevitably leaving me struggling and broke right as she was graduating.. making her last few months of HS beyond stressful & when we should have been celebrating her graduation & acceptance into a University in the fall!!…. instead we were blindsided by the sudden, huge payments that needed to be made in order for her to graduate… I knew my mother had the ability to sabotage my happiness, as she has done so many times… but, I never knew she would do this to her first granddaughter!!

and why??….b/c according to her……  I deserve it!?!

The girls deserve it!?! (Because they shouldn’t have asked to see their cousins–the only ACTUAL reason she gave us!!) ..

we all deserve THIS…????

abandonment!?! Why??

THINK ON THAT… and then reread yesterday’s post one more time…

I am not an addict!

I am sick…

even if you want to pretend I’m not…

and neither me nor my daughters deserve any of the shit you and HIM have thrown our way!!

And you FUCKING KNOW IT!!!

The other dark-side of the opioid epidemic….

For everyone out there taking pain medication, as prescribed… yet, hiding in the shadows in shame due to the recent press about the opioid epidemic… you’re not alone.

I have an illness which causes constant daily pain due to literal deteriorating holes in my bones… and which causes occasional, sudden and severe full body, intense painful episodes also known as sickle cell pain crisis. I have a rare hereditary blood disorder called sickle-beta thalassemia anemia.

Due to this, in order to function as a normal human being.. in order to get out of bed every morning.. I am prescribed pain medication…. oh wait.. I’m sorry, I’m on “drugs”!!

I have been at the same pain specialist for nearly 7 years… I have been on the same regime of medication for 5. Yes, it took a few years to find the right one/dosage … but, for the last 5 years.. I have been on the same medication.

In those 7 years, I have never once.. ran out early, had my medicine “stolen”, “lost” or whatever other reason addicts come up with to go to the doctors early and get more medicine. In fact, most months, I have extra pills at home because I haven’t taken all of my medicine & one time, I had so much extra medication in my possession that I went down to the police station to, safely, throw away the extra/expired medication.

Each month, I have to pee for my doctor.. proving that, not only, do I have the appropriate amount of the medication in my system, but I also don’t have any other medications and/or illicit drugs which I am not suppose to have in my system.

You can not go to the same doctors for 7plus years and be an addict! I don’t “doctor hop”.. I don’t exhibit any signs and/or symptoms of an addict.. YET, just because I am prescribed and take medications which other people abuse… I must be an addict!?!

Call me crazy… but, I don’t think that’s fair!?! I also don’t think that’s correct.. There is a huge difference to being physically dependent on medication and being an addict and with the media coverage of the “epidemic” … I think those of us who have to use pain medicine in order to live normal lives, are being unfairly shamed into the corners of society.. even into the corners of our own families.

Moral of the story… don’t judge a book by a cover nor a person by their medicine cabinet. Not everyone prescribed pain meds abuse said prescription & physical dependence is not the same as addiction.

If you are a responsible patient, following doctors orders and doing your best to live your best life… you are not alone & shouldn’t let close-minded, judgmental people shame you into silence about your illness or condition.

At the same time… if you do need help… don’t be scared to ask!

Click here for resources to find help!!

…. because I am in, no way, advocating the use of opioids if they are not needed!! I do understand that many people suffer from addiction and if you are one of them… click the link above and please find the help you need!

I am simply sharing my own personal story & asking you not to judge me or anyone else in my situation… or any situation for that matter. Have compassion for everyone… we all have a story. I’m simply trying to share mine & hopefully let someone else out there know… YOU ARE NOT ALONE…. because I know I’m tired of feeling like I am & I wish someone would say it to me ;?)