My next guest is Antonia Ragozzino who has just published her first novel, Taking Out The Trash. The book is fiction although Antonia has based the main character, Ella on herself and on her journey after divorce. Here’s Antonia:
I am 39 years old. I was married at twenty four and divorced the first time at twenty-eight. It was a very trying time. It was basically a rough time with substance abuse and me trying to help my husband. It was very, very tiresome.
Then when I turned thirty-one, I met who I believed to be my absolute best friend and he also got into drugs and I was like “I can’t do this anymore.”
When my first husband left me, I had to take the trash out and I hated it. I had this big beautiful house, this big long driveway and he left me on Thanksgiving weekend, so every Thursday night, don’t you know it was either snowing or sleeting.
I was the baby girl in a strict Italian family, I had a Catholic upbringing, my dad took the trash out, then in college, no one took the trash out, and then my husband took the trash out, so it was just something I hated to do. Every Thursday night I would cry all the way down the driveway, so that was inspiration for writing the book.
The book centers on a young girl in her twenties who has to learn to take out her own trash and to love herself and get respect from other people, to be happy with herself and move on. At the beginning of the book, she thinks she’ll just find another husband because all I ever knew was that I wanted to be married with kids, like my parents and my sisters. So it goes through the dating chronicles, she goes through a lot of mishaps, loosely based on other people’s dating experiences or it’s complete fiction, but at the end of each chapter, she takes the guy out with the trash.
Then at the end, she learns that she can conquer being divorced and it’s not about having a man. It’s about taking out her own trash and being comfortable with herself.
The Divorce Coach Says
When Antonia was talking about her book, I thought using the metaphor of taking out the trash to refer to the ex and subsequent dates was amusing and entertaining. Then when she developed it further to refer to her own development and learning to love herself, I loved it. It’s much more meaningful, letting go of past choices and past baggage, and getting to acceptance.
BTW when I was first separated one of my biggest worries was forgetting to put the trash out. Yes, that had been one of my husband’s jobs – I didn’t have the long driveway that Antonia had and I didn’t cry as I rolled out the bins, rather I was patting myself on the back for remembering!
Good luck …. looking forward to reading your comments.