So I signed up to attend Oprah’s “Live Your Best Life Weekend” back in March. My desire to be in the great presence of not only Oprah and Gayle, but Suze Orman, Donna Brazile, Dr. Oz and others was just too much to resist! It was so hard to resist that I forgot to ask myself until the week of the event: “Are men even allowed at this thing?” As I got closer to the date, I called the Oprah team to ask this question and got no response. I decided the day of the event that I’m just going to drive the 4 hours and hope I don’t get turned away! It was truly ridiculous for me to think that.
It was foolish of me to think there would be a problem because of course there wasn’t. The volunteers treated me like family but there
still one problem: I was only one of about 20 men out of 6,000 people! As Oprah came out I wondered if she was going to make us feel uncomfortable. She looked around and said: “I see some men in here. I don’t know how you got in here.” We all burst out in laughter and then she said how happy she was that we came and that we’ll get some cool points with our significant other. With that said, all nervousness disappeared and I was given permission to enjoy the weekend and just be free.
I returned back to Washington, DC with my life’s purpose solidified. At the end of the day, dreams know no gender. We all laugh in the same language. We all cry in the same language. We all have hopes, fears, aspirations, concerns. We all hunger our hope and nightmare our dreams unnecessarily. I found myself at times being amazed that someone who came from her background (some of it horrific) could create this. Then I had my own “Aha” moment. As the crowd was being wooed by Donna Brazile and others, I said in my head “I want to help as many other people as possible feel this good.” Whether I would make any money doing it did not enter my head. That’s how I knew my life’s purpose was solidified for it was Farrah Gray who said that when you find what you would do for free in a world that didn’t need money, you have found your career.
Oprah said that the key to happiness is helping as many other people get happy as possible. This past weekend was a reminder that, as Willie Jolley says, we can all turn our trials into our testimonies, our obstacles into our opportunities, our problems into our possibilities, and that we can take our mess and turn it into our message. I thank Oprah and O Magazine for creating the space that allowed us to see that we
can live our best life, if we just