I was reminded recently of how lucky I am that my personal beliefs are rooted in direct personal experiences rather than bigotry, hatred, hearsay & ignorance. Through the storms of my life I kept an open mind and learned things and lessons so many are not privy of. That’s why I like to tell my stories, so that individuals can take heed of my experiences and learn a few things about life without actually going through hell, but it’s sad to see many refuse to listen and are are driven by hate. I constantly see posts that include insults, lies, bad mouthing and more. It usually makes me more sad than angry, but one post in particular the other day truly upset me. The post in question relayed the story of a little girl being taught the lesson that all homeless people want and need is basically “all your money”.Read More →

I’ve been lucky. I come from a very loving family. My husband is amazing and a great dad. Even my ex is a truly caring dad. My kids are the most amazing, loving, compassionate people. I am so proud of the young men they have become. I like to think I have great taste in friends, as some have turned out to be impeccable human beings, but the past few years, it seems as if hate is everywhere. I don’t remember this kind of vitriol before then, perhaps the advent of social media is enhancing it, but more and more, people are angry, hateful, selfish, hypocritical, self righteous and judgemental. I am a blocker. I may not unfriend people whose posts are negative, insulting or toxic, but I do unfollow, mute, or whatever social media’s answer is to “not see” the hate. Every now and again someone deeply disappoints me.Read More →

A couple of years ago, in the name of being “supportive” in regards to Nicky (or so he claimed), someone told me “At least he’s not dead”. Apparently this individual had lost two cousins to some condition he did not identify and that was the reason for his statement. When I was outraged and said “gee, thanks!”, he did not apologize, either. He didn’t think he anything to apologize for, imagine that. It was certainly not the first time someone was not supportive at all, claiming to be, and it will most certainly not be the last. Empathy and Compassion are not something many people excel at. Sadly. Please everyone, allow me to share a few thoughts: Know that anything that starts with “At least” is not supportive at all, to anyone. Least of which making me or anyone feel lucky… or guilty (depending on how we look at it)Read More →

It’s late February. It’s inevitable. Everything affects me more deeply. I find myself being more melancholy, my grief is more intense, disabling, confusing and all-consuming. My son Alex should be 23 years old in a few days. I didn’t just lose a baby these many years ago, I lost a lifetime of memories with someone that I loved before we ever met. Some of the hardest losses we experience as human beings are those involving children. They go against nature. Children aren’t supposed to die. In my world, however, they do. Oftentimes children with EB die before they’ve lived, like my Alex did. Yes, he had EB, but we did not know it at the time. In my world, filled with families dealing with Epidermolysis Bullosa, children are gone before they’re healed. It’s tragic and gut wrenching, every single time. I cannot say I ever got used to it, andRead More →

“I care too much, and it’s OK. I will not let anyone tell me I am wrong to love, to have empathy or compassion. Period.” That is what I posted on Facebook this morning with this image on the right from this great Minister John Pavlovitz which I’ve come to greatly respect. What prompted this post? Basically the hatred that I see from my so-called “friends” and people that I once admired. People that have nothing better to do with their day but spewing uncompassionate statements about the poor, the needy, the handicapped, the immigrants, you name it. The bullying and condescension over the less fortunate is at an all time high. It’s disheartening. My standard operating procedure is to unfollow, I rarely unfriend, but sometimes I am so heavily disappointed in people and so disgusted by their behaviour and how they think that I not only unfriend but block. IRead More →

The other day I came across a post about “9 things Italians living in the US will miss“, and while I concurred with everything posted, the one that spoke to me most was the one about family living close by. Oh, how I miss that! But it goes further than that. It’s the whole culture, the whole mindset that came to mind while I was reading this post. The mindset of caring for one another in a broader sense. In the U.S. most kids move away from home, following job opportunities across the country, moving far away from home, often right at the age of 18. It’s not like Italians are not like that, but they are the minority. Money does not drive us. Family does. We are always together, while the only time a whole family comes together in the US is for big holidays such as Thanksgiving. So,Read More →

Somehow, someway, life’s challenges and hardships help us evolve as human beings in a variety of ways. Having had hardships myself, and in turn, having met many moms who are disabled, or had to bury their children, or had children with profound disabilities, gave me an opportunity to learn compassion and empathy in ways people not exposed to this kind of life can understand. I may be able to explain how it feels to them, but I cannot make them understand it. Some people, however, seem to have an innate sense of compassion that always surprises me. Not having gone through any true tragedy or hardship, they have that empathy gene that people much older could only wish for. They say the right things, they show they care. They are not afraid to ask the right questions, or offer their help with things. They are truly amazing. In my book IRead More →

Of all the crazy TV shows I watch, one of the silliest must be “The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills”. I think it’s silly mostly because we see what people with an insane amount of money do, like taking a swan to the veterinary, buy a $190,000 ring, travel halfway across the country just to look at a tiny horse with a too-too, or get your bum waxed on national TV. While as human beings, I do believe these women are “mildly” interesting (truly, take the money away and what do you have left?), the reason why I tune in is to watch Yolanda.  I love Yolanda. I love, love, love Yolanda. The moment she was introduced to the show a few years ago, I felt some sort of kinship with her. Aside the fact that we were both born in 1964 I am not really sure what it is, but she isRead More →