Valerie Bertinelli has opened up about her tumultuous relationship with her ‘soulmate’ Eddie Van Halen, saying she and her ex-husband had reached ‘a beautiful place’ before he died.
The Food Network host was 21 when she wed the legendary guitarist in 1981, a year after they had met. They were married for 26 years and stayed close after their 2007 divorce.
Bertinelli, 61, and their son, Wolfgang, 30, were both by his side when he died at age 65 from cancer in October 2020. Van Halen’s second wife, Janie Liszewski, and his brother, Alex Van Halen were also there.
‘We went through a lot of hell as well,’ she told Hoda Kotb of their relationship on the Today show Tuesday. ‘We weren’t really good to each other at a lot of points in our lives because we met so young and were very immature.’
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Valerie Bertinelli reflected on her 26-year marriage to her ex-husband Eddie Van Halen during an interview on the Today show Tuesday, saying they ‘went through a lot of hell’
The Food Network host was 21 when she wed the legendary guitarist in 1981 (pictured that year), and they stayed close after their 2007 divorce
‘But I’m so happy that we were able to come to a beautiful place by the end of his life,’ she added. ‘I wish he was still here.’
Bertinelli, who filed for a legal separation from her second husband, Tom Vitale, in November, said she considers Van Halen to be one of her soulmates.
‘I think soul mates, I think we have more than just one,’ she explained. ‘I think that partly Wolfie is a soul mate of mine. When I think of soul mate, I think of souls that come here to experience this life on Earth together again and get to a higher place.
‘I definitely, definitely know that was part of Ed. I loved his soul deeply.’
Bertinelli explained that they ‘weren’t really good to each other’ at times in their relationship because they ‘met so young and were very immature’
The actress noted that she and Van Halen (pictured together in 1996), who both married other people after their divorce, ‘were able to come to a beautiful place by the end of his life’
Bertinelli wrote about her journey to self-acceptance, as well as her final moments with her ex-husband before his death, in her new book, ‘Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today,’ which was published on Tuesday.
‘I love you are the last words Ed says to Wolfie and me and they are the last words we say to him before he stops breathing,’ she recalled.
‘The love we have always had for each other proved stronger and more resilient than anything else,’ she added. ‘We chose to remain friends and family.’
While speaking with Kotb, Bertinelli explained that she didn’t plan on writing about her grief over Van Halen’s death, but it was unavoidable.
Bertinelli wrote about her final moments with Van Halen in her book ‘Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today’
Bertinelli and their son, Wolfgang, 30, (pictured) were both by his side when he died at age 65 from cancer in October 2020. Van Halen’s second wife, Janie Liszewski, was also there
‘I love you are the last words Ed says to Wolfie and me and they are the last words we say to him before he stops breathing,’ she wrote in her new book, which was published on Tuesday
‘When I wrote it and when I did it, it was very cathartic to go through it. I didn’t intend to write a book that had all that grief in it,’ she said.
‘It was about joy, [but] if I left that part out, it wouldn’t show you the path to the joy and how to find that, even through the depths of the biggest grief you can feel.’
Bertinelli noted that grief is something that many people can relate to nearly two years into the COVID-19 pandemic.
‘I know a lot of people have been feeling that across the country and around the world. We have all dealt with a lot of grief the last couple of years,’ she explained.
‘At first, it felt very raw and vulnerable to write about it, but I thought it was true. It was real, and it was something that I wanted to express about love, and how love is just so important to remember, even when you are going through all the pain.’