Mother writes intimate trauma experience, hopes to reach others dealing with divorce

Francesca Miracola was trained from an early age to keep up appearances at all costs; but behind closed doors, her parents’ toxic marriage served as a blueprint for dysfunction. Raw and illuminating, I Got It from Here is one woman’s story of saving herself and her children from the grips of her husband posing as a family man–and from the inherited trauma passed down by her own family of birth–while learning to trust in the inner voice that’s been trying to guide her all along.  Francesca Miracola’s debut memoir, I Got it From Here , is an exploration of one woman’s journey to shed off the past mistakes and find healing from the years of domestic violence, generational trauma, and denial of self. In hopes of inspiring others, Francesca’s message of resilience will hopefully resonate in the lives of others who may be struggling with trauma, divorce, and familial hardships that haunt us.

Sharing the generational trauma inherited from her Italian American family, the physical, mental, and emotional violence of her ex, and the grueling battle for custody over their two children, Francesca’s story chronicles her personal history of abuse and how despite the frustration and heartache, she is able to come to terms with her past, heal her wounds, and look forward to a future where she is her own protagonist.

Here is an excerpt from her book:

IT’S AMAZING HOW MANY ITALIANS CAN FIT INTO A DINING room on a Sunday afternoon. As a little girl in the 1970s, I took my seat at the kiddie table and listened to ridicule, intolerance, criticism, and rage ricochet from one relative to another. Instinct told me to grin and bear it, bide my time. I held out hope that one day, I’d rise above it and live happily ever after. But toxic

patterns from childhood played out in my adult life. And trust me, it was no fairy tale.

“Did you hear Tony left Millie?” my uncle Mikey asked once as he reached for the antipasto. I was just a kid, but I knew my cousin and her husband were miserable.

“Can you blame him?” my cousin Sal replied. “She really let herself go,” he added as he poured another glass of red wine.

“She’ll never be able to find another husband,” my godmother said disapprovingly.

“She won’t be alone. Her fat sister isn’t getting married anytime soon,” my cousin said, poking fun at them behind their backs.

I took it all on as if the words came from me, or as if they were directed at me. Hunched over with vicarious guilt and shame, I ate with my head bowed and peeked up through my bangs, stunned that no one else seemed disturbed by any of this. The room spun from the sounds of laughter and the passing of dishes. At the head of the table, my father dipped his bread in the homemade sauce and took his turn in the antics.

“Lily, these meatballs are worse than your hairdo,” he joked.

Dad had a knack for spewing cruelty under the guise of humor. “No wonder you’re so fat, you’re the only one who can tolerate your cooking.” He shoved another forkful in his mouth.

“That’s not nice.” Aunt Luna half-heartedly laughed while making a meek attempt to defend her sister.

“Be quiet, Luna. No one wants to hear from a spinster.” My dad’s cutting tone sent chills up my spine.

He made fun of my mother, her family, and—at times—my brothers or me. His vicious jokes permeated the walls of our home long after coffee was served and the last of our cousins left. After meals, my father retreated to the couch, where he sat with his legs crossed, hiding behind his newspaper. My mother cleaned up the mess. It never occurred to me that she was a person. She slaved over us, earning no appreciation or respect.

Even as a small child, I had a strong sense that the way my family behaved wasn’t serving any of us. I longed to recognize this awareness in someone else’s eyes in the hopes that I wouldn’t feel so alone. But my relatives all seemed comfortable in the chaos, and I quickly learned it was best to follow along. My inner knowing became my dirty little secret.

The world outside our home offered me no relief. We lived in a neighborhood of identical brick townhomes occupied by my relatives, or friends who felt like cousins. Judgmental adults pointed their fingers at each other’s families so as not to look at their own. I strived for perfection so they wouldn’t point at me. I attended school in a uniform and conformed to the rules of the community. Yet, deep down I knew I didn’t fit in. As I grew older, I worried there was something wrong with me.

It’s no surprise then that my father walked me down the aisle and gave me away to a man I did not love. I was paraded past a church full of relatives who expected me to live the same kind of life they had, all while judging how I looked as a bride. Twenty-six years of familiarity with deep-seated dysfunction made it seem normal. I had a lot of doubts about my fiancé and my willingness to marry him. There were plenty of signs that I should run. Instead, I said, “I do.”


More about the author:

Francesca Miracola is an Italian American from Queens, NY, currently living on Long Island, but in her mind she’s a free-spirited wanderer. She wants to travel the world, but she’s afraid to fly, although a glass of wine gets her through most flights. Francesca’s mostly an introvert who greatly prefers deep, meaningful conversations to surface small talk. She keeps her circle small, and she’s still debating if that’s a good or bad thing. She’s a breast cancer survivor, but she rarely defines herself as one—probably because she feels like she’s been surviving something most of her life. She’s funny; at least, she makes herself laugh. Francesca graduated cum laude from New York University and worked in financial services for twenty-five years, even though she wanted to be a therapist. That’s probably because she needed a therapist. Francesca finally wound up on her true path as a student and teacher of A Course in Miracles, author, life coach, and founder of Protagonist Within LLC. Francesca is a wife, a best friend, and above all, a mother. Find out more about Francesca Miracola at herYou can learn more about here here:

Buy I GOT IT FROM HERE on Amazon