Dear Mom, I love you so much and I appreciate everything you've ever done for me, and the things you're still doing for me. Your strength is admirable. Remember in fifth grade when the teacher asked us to write about our hero and I wrote about you? I meant every single word. I hate the cheeseball factor this has right now, but I can't help it. You're my hero. And I'm sorry that looking at me everyday must remind you of him. I'm sorry for every single thing I've ever done that's disappointed you. I'm sorry for all of last year. I was just so confused. My whole world was turned upside down and it caused me to spin out of control. Do you remember the days when you would hold me while I cried? One day you stopped holding me. And by the time you told me everything it was too late to go back and too late for you to start holding me again. I think I can truly say that 2003 was the worst year of my life. I'm not exaggerating either. That whole even with the asshole known as my father was just so confusing. It seemed like everyone around us had a rough time last year. But it was the best year of my life at the same time because the hard times make us stronger, right? It made me realize what I have and what I had been taking for granted. I love you so much and if it wasn't for you we would be in New Bedford right now, still living on Arnold St., probably with *him*, and I would have to witness everything first hand. Thank you for being strong and not putting me through that. I love you.