About My blog

Holding space is the process in which a person is fully present with themselves and with others. As a mental health therapist for thirteen years, I was honored to hold space with my clients. In 2009, I realized I needed a break, so I have temporarily stepped away from my career. I am now re-learning how to hold space for myself. This blog follows my journey.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

What to do without Oprah

I miss Oprah. There, I said it. I don't have oodles of time to watch afternoon television, but the other day at 4:00, I turned on the T.V. to find no Oprah. That's when it hit me. The Oprah Show is gone. I know she's still around in other places- O magazine, Own Network, Dr. Phil, and the other doctor. What's his name? I forget. They're just not the same.

I'm embarrassed to admit this because I've always viewed Oprah as being a little too much. She wants everyone to think she's just a regular woman, but I don't view her that way. She seems too pampered, too full of herself to relate to all of us non-desperate housewives. However, the show was good. It had a good message, interesting interviews, and of course the Book Club did wonders for the book industry.

Although watching her show was fun, it's not the reason I miss Oprah. It's because I (and you too, right?) have always dreamt of doing something so great that we are invited to be on Oprah. Who hasn't pictured themselves sitting on her stage saying something profound and meaningful? Then, Oprah would nod in agreement with her audience clapping. In my fantasy, Oprah loved me so much she'd email me regularly, invite me to her California home, and send me a Christmas card with her, Stedman, and their dogs sitting around the tree. Of course, I would also meet Gayle. I'm convinced Gayle and I would hit it off immediately. Gayle seems to be the nicer of the two.

When I was in college, I worked at a women's shelter which provided abused women and their children a safe place to live. The agency did a research study, and the director was invited to be on Oprah. Yes, my fantasy came true for our director, Felicia. This occurred in North Tulsa, Oklahoma. I was practically the only white women in a big group of African-American women. So, you can imagine the excitement. Everyone was in on it. (Girl, you're gonna be on Oprah! Dancing would then occur.) There was discussion of what she should wear and what she should say. It was big! We were proud. One of us was getting the chance to say something great on that famous stage.

Then, it happened. She was on the show with a panel of other guests. As I remember, the other guests were pretty big people in the domestic violence world. Therefore, she didn't get much time - only a few minutes. That's not much of an opportunity to make a profound, memorable statement. Afterwards, she told us that during the breaks, Oprah was too busy to talk to her guests. I guess Felicia didn't get the invitation to Oprah's home and probably didn't receive the Christmas card. It's too bad because Oprah would've liked Felicia. I liked her.

I wonder what Felicia thinks about that experience eighteen years later. As for me, I know my dream of being on Oprah is over. So, that means, the ladies on The View better watch out! They'll love me so much they'll ask me to be a regular host. Maybe a mental health consultant? It has a nice ring to it. (One can dream, right?)


  1. It's so funny, because I have the Oprah fantasy too. Who doesn't?? Also, she was the last bastion of decency in network television it seemed. Amidst all the reality shows and backstabbing, she had, as you said, a good message.

    I seldom watch television because most of the time it's like eating junk food, and I'd rather read. But Oprah's show always made me think, and I'll miss having that.

    I don't think it will be the same on her new network.

  2. Julie, I agree everyone has Oprah fantasies. She has been such a fixture in our culture, and it is hard to find something meaningful on T.V. I get tired of the reality shows and the talent competitions. I haven't watched much of her network, but I agree, it won't be the same.

  3. Absolutely fantastic blog!!! Glad I found it! Love it!!!

    Lola x