Advice From Oprah

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This morning I woke up remembering my crazy dream in vivid detail. I was at a wedding. Not just any wedding, but an extravagant, lushly decorated affair in a room filled with wealthy party-goers. Cliques of snooty well-dressed people mingled and chatted on couches, waiting for the couple to arrive, and I remember walking around listening to snippets of conversations revolving around the current state of Wall Street or the latest tacky designer trends. I came to a set of about five stairs and looked up in front of me to make sure the way was clear to climb. At the top of the stairs was Oprah Winfrey herself, carrying a tray of hors d’oeuvres. She looked as if she wasn’t sure she could make it down the stairs carrying the wobbly tray in high heels, so when I got to the top I said, “Do you want some help with that?” She smiled at me warmly and rested the tray on a table beside her, no longer seeming too concerned about the entire stair-descending operation. We started talking and I told her I appreciated the work she did and would also appreciate her advice in finding out about my  direction in life with all the current upheaval I was facing. That was an understatement, and the truth of the matter was that I have been a ball of anxiety for months, trying to figure out a number of difficult issues that plague my daily waking reality. In true Oprah form, she tossed her arms in the air, and boomed out,”Child, don’t tell the story, BE the story!” With that she linked arms with me, and we strutted down the stairs at a fast clip in our high heels, kicking them up with each stair we descended as if we were actors in a swinging showgirl musical. Her message was telling me not to worry, to take the bull by the horns, and to forge on forward full steam ahead. When we got to the bottom there was paparazzi snapping our pictures and suddenly Oprahs little display of fun had captured the attention of the entire room. Well, come on, it is OPRAH after all. We talked about our lives, found we had interesting things in common and she promised to call me once in a while to catch up. Although she was clearly enjoying being the centre of attention she was genuine and true in spirit and I walked away feeling a deep connection to her. Funny how you can feel you truly know someone when the likelihood of ever meeting them in reality is slim to none. It was a comforting meeting of the minds.

My reality? I left my job as a teacher to live my dreams and pursue my personal passions in 2008, finished a degree at University by 2010, and decided to follow my heart and BE my own story to find my true happiness. This led me to realise that I wanted to write for a living, not teach. Major career change at age 37. Plunge taken.

Give me a topic and I can cover it. Eloquently, seriously, or with a sharp sassy wit that will slap you into next week. I have written for the fashion industry, the restaurant community, and the arts and culture sector. I am a published writer with a number of captivating examples of my writing ready to shoot out to editors at a moments notice. There are so many places where my voice in print could work to make a difference. I feel truly blessed that I can put my voice down on paper *or blog* as I realise not everyone is lucky enough to have that ability. My last job turned out to be a complete bust when I found out the company I worked for was completely corrupt, and the cushy paycheck I relied on had to be abandoned for the sake of upholding my morals. Such a fluke and what a dissapointment. I now spend my days and many nights sending out hundreds of cover letters and resumes only to hear absolutely nothing back. The black hole resume vortex. What ever happened to a courteous email of receipt? Evidently politeness is a thing of the past. It’s been almost a year and I am still struggling without a paycheck, working diligently daily to follow my dreams and BE the story I want to see materialize. I know that nothing comes easily, especially when you change your reliable career in the pursuit of following your true passions, but I’ve done my homework, graduated in the top ten percent of my class (twice), have diplomas and a degree with distinction, and have so much to offer on so many levels. Canada is the land of opportunity, or so I was told growing up. Doesn’t that mean my phone should ring so I can finally land a job where I can offer my talents to projects that would benefit from my creativity? I’m here. I’m waiting. I’m ready. Be the story she says-good advice. Life IS short- and I have so many stories to tell…

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