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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Farwell,Oprah


In 1997 my world, as I had known it was forever changed. My marriage was ending and I was faced with the startling realization that I had no idea who I was.

I was a wife, a mother of three...beyond that I had no clue. Yes, I knew I loved books, movies and music, and writing, but those weren't who I was, and now as a single mother who I would become? I was terrified, but also excited to find out.

As a first step I got a job working at the Cape Cod Lighthouse Charter School as assistant to the director. I would get out of school every day in time to come home, get on my treadmill and watch, Oprah.

This was the year Oprah began her "Change your life television," programming.

And yes, it changed my life.

I was introduced to teachers, authors, experts and a way of thinking I'd never experienced. The floor next to my bed was piled high with books by Carolyn Myss ("Why People Don't Heal and How They Can") Gary Zukav, ("Seat of the Soul") and too many to list. I learned that what my life looked like was up to me. Blaming anyone for my lot in life took away my power. I was the boss of my life, no one else.

I learned I was good enough, just as I was, but within that have always continued to grow and learn, because as Maya Angelou said on Oprah, "When you know better you do better." Dr. Angelou also taught me, "When people show you who they are, believe them."

It may sound a bit precious to say I would not be who I am without Oprah, but I believe it's true. She inspired me to keep trying, to take risks, open my heart and believe I can be anything I want to be. I know I am not alone. She has inspired millions of women (and many men I am sure) to embrace who they are and know you can dream big,

I am not sure if without Oprah I would have studied to be a life coach, then have become a journalist, and now, a very optimistic novelist.

My dream of sitting on a couch on The Oprah Show, my novel in hand, will not happen now, but I know I might never have dared to dream a dream this big without all she brought into my life.

But I know she would probably disagree because as she has often said, quoting The Wizard of Oz, "You always had the power..."

Three years ago I wrote my life purpose down in my journal. It says, "My goal is to empower women through my writing. I want to show them they are capable of being anything and everything they want to be." I know this was inspired by all I've learned from Oprah.

Thank you, Oprah for helping me see who I am today, and who I can become tomorrow.

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