Fantasia is here. Her eyes water whenever she sees footage of herself win American Idol- it was a special moment that changed her life. It was something she always wanted to do but she felt it would never happen for her because she didn’t have a diploma, she is a single mom. She felt that her curse had been broken and that she could follow her dreams. Oprah recalls that several years ago she warned Fantasia that with all the money she would get “cousins” coming out of the woodwork. Does Fantasia think she mismanaged the financial side? Yes she did. She turned up to perform, and she let others handle her money and arrange where she had to be. She allowed them to take care of everything. She was young and naive and didn’t realise that she had to be involved in accounts and schedules, to make sure that people weren’t taking advantage of her talent.
Oprah, as the producer of The Color Purple had been so excited for Fantasia to star in the broadway hit. Scott and the others were so excited and thrilled. At the end, Fantasia began to miss so many performances that they had to pay back over half a million to the audience in cancelled performance fees. More than the money, this was for many the first Broadway play that people had seen- people would bus from California to see her, and they were extremely disappointed when she wasn’t there. Fantasia had never done Broadway, nor had she seen a Broadway play. She wasn’t prepared for what comes with it. 8 shows a week and she had to also deal with her own life as a single mom taking care of everybody. It became an overload. What people don’t know is that she had to have two tumors removed from her vocal chords- as an artist who sang since she was five, she’d never been to a throat doctor- this was the first time she had worked with throat coaches. You can’t give your best only on some days, she doesn’t know how to give half. Towards the end she was very tired, and if she wasn’t on stage she was in the hospital getting an IV. Why didn’t you tell me? asks Oprah. Fantasia says she couldn’t find her. They laugh. Oprah asks why she didn’t say something to someone. Fantasia says that some of the producers knew she was getting an IV, and she just had to keep coming back for the next performance. She went to the best doctor in LA who took the tumors out and now she’s as good as gold.
Oprah says that’s scary for anybody, but for Fantasia it is her livelihood and joy. She couldn’t work for 6 weeks and she has to pay all the bills. She asked the lord and he said stop taking care of everybody. Now a reality show follows her battle back into success. As a single mom without a diploma, she wants more for her daughter than she has. Footage shows her daughter has 4 American Girl dolls, they all needed clothes. Her daughter got a guitar and a pampering party for all her friends for her birthday party. Her mother says Fantasia gives her daughter so much to make up for her absence. Oprah asks if she’s worried about spoiling her daughter? A little, because she’s always on the road and she has to keep working to pay for a good school.
2 years ago, Fantasia told People magazine that she was too broke to buy pizza. Oprah asks was there not a lot of money which came in after American Idol, and Fantasia says she doesn’t want to throw anyone under the bus- there was a lot of money coming in but she doesn’t know where it went. After the surgery, no money was coming in so she called her manager because her card was declined trying to buy pizza. The manager wired her some money, and at that point Fantasia knew she’d been mishandled. It hit her, wow. And she couldn’t ask anyone in her family for anything, this was of her making. When she got her money from American Idol she’d send it home to her mom who was living in a hotel having just divorced. After she won, she wanted to make her whole family happy. In a family of six adults, she’s the only one working. In her reality show you can see how Teeny, her big brother, is unwilling to work. Her mom said Fantasia enabled him, and now he’s disabled- he will not work. He has everything that he’s ever asked Fantasia for. He hangs out in the pool house all day long. Fantasia has decided that she doesn’t wasnt to take care of everybody. She has had it, she’s over it, it’s time for Teeny to go. She texted him to go. He was hysterical.
Fantasia put him out, don’t get her wrong she loves him, he’s her brother, but it’s too much. He’s a man, and the bible says if a man don’t work then a man don’t eat. Before Fantasia was blessed, her brother was the only one that worked, he could have gone to college on a scholarship, and now they are all take take take. She cherishes her house, and as they don’t pay the bills, they don’t cherish it. She hasn’t changed with money, she’s grown. Oprah quotes a book, The Gift of Fear, saying when you say no and others don’t listen, then they are trying to control you. Oprah asks if Fantasia was cautious about exposing her family this way? A litle, but she wanted them to see themselves, and they don’t see how hard she is working. Coming home to their drama where they don’t even say thank you. They pout, and she needs them, so she always ends up giving them something.
She had a lot of lawsuits coming to her, from her family and others, and they came after both of her homes. The home went up for auction. It was very embarrassing. What has she learned, Oprah asks. She has learned how to say no. Two, she has to be in control of her destiny- her money, her shows, everything. She is 25 and she can’t allow people to take care of her destiny. Oprah says she’s lucky to know that by 25. Fantasia performs her new single as inspired by her struggle.
Millions of women connect with reality star Ruby Gettinger, they laugh cry and struggle along as she tries to loose weight. Ruby at her heaviest weighed 716lbs, she knows her problem is both mental and physical. She doesn’t remember anything from her life before age 13. Now Ruby is starting to peel back the layers to discover the truth. This season cameras follow Ruby as she achieves major breakthroughs- she wears jeans for the first time in her life. She comes into the studio, wearing jeans. Last time Ruby told Oprah that she’d never weighed below 350lbs as an adult, she is just under that now. Last time Oprah asked what Ruby was feeding- and she was feeding pain. Her childhood has been surpressed. As a child the only medication that you can access is food. She thought this was just about food, but it is about her pain in the past. To help track down her lost childhood, she hired a private detective who found a physician’s assistant who treated Ruby and her mother over 20 years ago. She met with the doctor, Dr Dukes; they used to come weekly, and he thinks that the mother was trying to protect Ruby from something that she suffered as a child. The doctor thought that Ruby’s mother fed her so much to keep her unattractive. She doesn’t know what happened, she will sit down with the doctor and her mother to find the secret behind her lost childhood.
Ruby recently realised that her missing years are the reason she overeats. Dr Dukes and her mom were really close at one time, so Ruby feels he’ll help. Her mother started seeing Dr Dukes for general things, but later on she figured out that there was something severely wrong and she was treated for clinical depression, and considered suicide. She was afraid of suicide, nothing happened but it almost did. When she was 11 or 12 she was by herself with someone who was kin to her and he told her not to open that door. The doctor says his aunt fed her beautiful girls to make them less attractive to men, and that maybe this was the case here. Her mother says she enabled all her children.
Oprah says that our past affects who we are now, but the real issue with food is what we do every time we have an emotion. Oprah knows from experience that emotional eaters eat to deal with their feelings- when happy, sad, stressed, bored.. . Ruby didn’t realise she was over-eating on snacks, all day long. Ruby needed food, it was giving her something that she wasn’t getting. Oprah says food was love for Ruby. Ruby agrees. Ruby’s father was gone alot because he was in the airforce. She doesn’t remember him at all from that time, but from age 13 up she became close to him to teach him how to love. He was a geat father and provider, but he couldn’t hold her hand or say he loved her. Oprah says Ruby ate to make herself loved- with a disconnected father and a suicidal depressed mother.
Ruby went to see a plastic surgeon on her TV program, “Ruby”. He draws on the skin on her body- you trade the fat for loose skin or for scars. She had been excited to see a surgeon, but seeing the scars was horrific. The choice of hanging skin or scars is difficult. Oprah has always been told that if you cut the underarm flab, the scar never goes away. Ruby says it’s a no-win situation. She feels the hanging skin is worse than the scars. Nothing can change the hanging skin. Ruby had diabetes, and now it is under control, she no longer has to take medication. She was on 4 medications for the silent killer- tomorrow’s show is a one-hour special on the silent killer. Ruby feels healthier than ever, she has a fast-pace, she is not limited by anything, At 700lb, she couldn’t have sat in this chair. She wants to help others- to ask what are you hungry for, what are you feeding? Initially she couldn’t deal with the fact that she was a food addict. Oprah is a food addict, she doesn’t like to say it but it is the truth.
It’s a journey, season 3 of Ruby starts on Monday on the Style Network. Remember don’t text and drive. Thank you.
WHAT WE LEARNED TODAY:
Learn to say no, even to family, if they ask for more than you can give.
Fantasia works really, really hard.
Money doesn’t change you, it makes you grow.
When you say no and others don’t listen, then they are trying to control you.
You don’t get to be 716lb if you are not feeding a suppression.
A VERY QUICK SUMMARY:
Don’t be the sole breadwinner in a house of 6 capable adults. Food is food, not love.