I, for one, thank God for DVR’s. I just watched the final Oprah Winfrey Show, only two days late. I can’t say that I was an Oprah groupie, or even one who watched her show obsessively. Yet, who in the world can say that they don’t know O, or have tuned into her show for at least a few hours of entertainment, enlightenment, or inspiration during her 25 year reign? You can? Don’t feel bad but you missed out and are definitely a minority :).
I feel like I grew up with her as her show first aired when I was just 18. I was old enough to be conscious of her uniqueness as an African American female in the broadcasting world and smart enough to be cognizant of the common thread of human experience that were the hallmarks of her show. Unashamedly, I was proud to cheer her on as she broke barriers and watched her ascendance to worldwide, icon status with awe. Yes, you can.
Oprah’s energy, intelligence, passion, humanitarianism and commitment have touched the lives of many. She has unreservedly shared much of her personal pain and given so many people the courage to unburden themselves of shame and break past their own self-induced barriers. She has given a platform to others and helped them rise. The Oprah touch. Yes, she became a millionaire in the process but I think that is a merely a very happy circumstance. She found her calling you see. She is a fine example of the law of reciprocity, the power of belief, self-will and going forward even when the path is not clear. Her wealth can’t be counted in mere numbers.
With such an impact on the lives of millions, it’s not surprising that there are teary eyed people, women in particular, everywhere. Who can take her place? Who would we want to? We are all agog to see what she will do next and if her past endeavors are any indication, OWN will be the one to watch. Thank you, Oprah.
On her last show, she spoke of finding your calling. I was deeply moved by her comments. As many of you know, the circumstances of my life have shifted me to a second career.
For most of us, life passes by really fast. So fast, that you spend a large portion of your time focusing on the necessities of survival. We don’t spend a lot of time ruminating and often in the noise and struggle we miss the threads, so fine are they, that make up the tapestry of internal life. I almost missed mine. Upon reflection, I realize that I was moving towards this place for at least 10 years before I arrived.
I’m a NY girl. When I moved to NJ, I didn’t have a licence because I never really needed one. Catch that cab!!! lol. Likewise, I always loved flowers but since I never really had anywhere to grow them but my fire escape, I didn’t pay much mind to them although I secretly harbored an obsessive love of trees. Looking at pictures of me over the years, I am always in front of one, in Texas, in California, in Singapore, in Jamaica. A sign, had I but known it.
Only when I brought my house did I actually start to dig the smell of earth. Looking at the sparseness of my garden was painful and aggravating so I bought a bunch of bulbs and dropped them in the ground. I knew nothing about plant sizes, or watering, or fertilizing, even, dare I say it, mulch. But nature is miraculous and so most of them grew. Just to underscore my lack of knowledge the intrepid survivors quickly outgrew their space and I was encouraged to do a little more and a little more and…
It took six years of reading magazines and studying landscape shows and my fledgling successes to make me want to go to school. I always yearn to be an expert at whatever I do, no doubt caused by Virgo ascendancy in my chart. I had no time with my very demanding job but I had heart and so I continued my voracious ingestion of whatever written material caught my eye and the expansion of my garden. The day arrived when I found myself surrounded by women in nurseries and garden centers and I was spouting information. They always thought I worked there lol. Those days gave rise to burgeoning confidence and me ripping out my entire garden and starting from scratch. In a word, joy.
I was never a morning person. I was the cranky friend you knew not to call before 12 on the weekends. I do not know when I became the person whose favorite leisure activity became sweating in the garden and greeting the day surrounded by the symphony of birdsong and buzzing insects.
The day arrived when I heard a flower unfolding in the garden, the tiniest puff of a sound as the flower unfolded and hit the air. Yeah, really. I bent to watch it and realized I was in love and there was no place I would rather be than right there. It took me one year after that to lose my job, find a school, open a business and take my arrogant self-taught personage into somebody’s garden and get them to pay me for all those hours of voracious reading and practice. Now, I get to play in the dirt for fun and I know, unequivocally, that this is where I was meant to be. Corporate America be damned.
My clients speak to me of my passion and knowledge. They have no idea how proud that makes me. It is almost a crime to get paid for doing something you love. I am so grateful that God called and I had the sense to answer.
What about you?
Find it, love it, do it. It is life changing. Say it again. It’s worth repeating :).