i heart hollye dexter!

For those who read my blog, you all know this week is giving week. sharing the folks and blogs i adore. ADORE. LOVE. CAN’T GET ENOUGH OF. and today i share with you hollye dexter. i’m sharing her but you can’t have her because she’s mine. well, okay, that’s not true. but for for right now, this moment, she’s mine. i adore hollye.
i love that she spells her name with an e at the end.
i love that she wears both her heart and her political passion on her sleeve.
i love that she can do anything: sing, write, paint, make gorgeous babies, marry a hunka-hunka burnin’ love, curse like the best, forgive like we oughta, and that she has a past she is not afraid to share in the present and get this: she does it all with frickin’ grace and ease..
i not only heart her. i bow at the altar of hollye dexter because i am forever grateful that she is in my life.
she has made my life stunningly glorious.

here’s hollye’s new blog post:

The first thing that flashed into my mind this morning as my son poked me awake at 6:30 am was “Oh my God…this is it. The last Oprah show is today…”

Next thought: How will I deal with it? I thought about flying to Chicago, throwing myself to the floor and clinging to her legs, begging Don’t leave me! But that would be undignified. And creepy. I could imagine myself screaming as the cops drag me away…But you guys don’t understand! Oprah is my best friend!

Oprah truly does feel like a friend to me, and to so many of us. She has been a companion to my days for the last twenty-five years.. When I’ve been hopeless, I’ve looked to her for direction. On so many occasions her show inspired me, pulling me out of a life rut. I’ve taken her advice on so many issues. Like her, I too start my days asking that God use my life for something greater than I know. She taught me that.

In fact, Oprah has taught me more than I ever learned growing up in my family. She taught me that you can be born a poor black child in the segregated deep South, and become the most beloved woman in the world.

When she shared that she was molested as a child, she taught me you can be damaged and still be happy.

When I learned about her hidden pregnancy at 14, and the baby’s death, it taught me you can make terrible mistakes in your life and start again.

When she exposed her secrets to the world, she taught me that it is okay to tell the truth, about everything.

She brought incest and child abuse and homosexuality and shame out of the closet.

She taught me that being happy for other’s successes lifts all of humanity.

She taught me that money and power is not necessarily the root of all evil. Some people use theirs for good.

When she sat down with guests who she’d had previous conflicts with, she taught me it’s okay to be wrong and say you’re sorry.

Through her struggles with weight, she taught that most of us will have lifelong battles that we may overcome, or we may not, but we are still worthy and lovable just as we are.

She’s taught women everywhere that you can rise to the top, be a powerful woman, have kids or not have kids, be married or don’t. Be yourself.

I had certainly never known a person like this in my own life growing up. But since learning that people like that exist, I have sought them out. My life is now filled with phenomenal, brave, honest people like Oprah. If it weren’t for Oprah and her influence on my life, I don’t know that I would have had the courage to start my own nonprofit for foster kids, to write my memoir, or to write The Shame Prom with Amy Ferris.

And for all you eye-rollers out there who have your doubts about her, I hear you. She is human. I’ve been mad at her here and there. She has her moods, she gets caught up in her ego sometimes, and is flawed like everyone else. And yes, I know she’s not God (though the jury is still out on that one…I mean, you never know…)

On the other hand, Oprah has had a positive influence on our culture, more than any other living person I can think of. Seriously, the Dalai Lama doesn’t have as much reach and influence (no offense, Dalai!). People in the poorest countries in Africa watch her. Women in Saudi Arabia gather in their burqas to watch her. I even believe that her personal endorsement was a big reason Barack Obama won the Presidency.

She has emboldened a generation, opened our minds to new possibilities, exposed us to other cultures and ways of thinking. She cast a strong bright light on the hidden shame we all carried. She brought positive television to the masses.

She gave us hope and laughter and truth when we needed it, and for that Ms. Oprah Winfrey, I am eternally grateful.

So long, dear friend. I will miss you terribly …
P.S. Will you miss me, too?

Category: Uncategorized 6 comments »

6 Responses to “i heart hollye dexter!”

  1. Madgew

    She is big H. Doesn’t need no little o’s or big O’s. I love Hollye and so glad she found her truth through Oprah. But now she has it and it will not leave her. So Oprah can leave (but not really, can you say OWN) and Hollye has HOLLYE and that is a one word name I can say proudly and with love.

  2. Kathleen

    Oh sweet Hollye I feel for you. Most of what O gave you I got from my Gram not that she traveled the world or had zillions to hand out but she would give you the shirt off her back and taught me well. I miss her so since she passed away. I hope in time you will fill that void with all that you learned from O. Plus I seldom watch TV. I know I am the biggest bore if a social event starts to chat TV shows. I am dead. But I do know who O is, LOL.
    You Hollye are the most talented, loving, strong, spiritual, well rounded person and even though we have never met your words express you and well then there is Amy who kisses the ground you walk on and I so trust the Big A. xoxo to Hollye and O

  3. hollye Dexter

    Oh my goodness. I am speechless. Amy – thank you, truly with all my heart, for…well, for the gift of YOU. Thank you for your unbelievably kind words for this flawed and quirky soul.

    Thank you beautiful Madge and Kathleen. This Ferris Wheel may need to renamed the GIGANTIC HEARTS club.

    Thank you thank you. What a salve for my Oprah-mourning spirit!

  4. Cheryl Moseley

    Dearest Hollye, through our Ferris wheel,

    Before I lie down next to my beloved husband in a few minutes, I just want to say that you have been on my mind most of the day. There are Oprahs all around us. I, too, am happy that you found Truth in what she brought to you, and to the TV audience. You also bring truth, love, and wisdom to those you touch. Believe me, you do!!! It is about heart, love, friendship, openness, sharing learned wisdom, forgiveness….. I know you know!! My heart goes out to you for your sense of loss and grief. May we find that nurturing feeling everywhere, not just in one person, no matter how powerful they seem to us, the Dalai Lama, Mother Teresa, or Oprah. Having the power of media doesn’t make someone more loving and wise. For me, it is seeing it in those around us. Love and xoxoxo

  5. kristine

    when you speak of love and the value of another human being, I feel like I am in church. there is “sacred” all around. I hold my breath a little because I am in awe of the power I am experiencing. the truth you speak is timeless and basic and beautiful. it is the truth that has saved souls, mended hearts, filled emptiness with compassion.
    we are a blessed congregation to know such life changers as these. Amy you know that value of lifting up another human being, and you do it with such brilliance….Hollye you share the best of you without reservation and you do it with such brilliance. I am in awe!
    I swear, if there were a collection plate I would empty my pockets.
    I love you both and know that we share a miracle….

  6. Barbara Hannah Grufferman

    O Hollye . . . I admit I’m one of those eye-rollers. And if I want to really admit it, it’s probably because she never swooped down and picked me up and said “Here, Barbara, come be on my show!!” Like O, I, too, am human, with all the stuff — good and bad — that comes with it. But, in the final analysis, I would say that yes, O is a damn good person. A friend to many, and a kind soul. And yes, she will be missed.
    You, dear Hollye, could take her place.

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