May 30, 2011

Dear Oprah...Farewell to a Dream Long Gone

Photo courtesy of
Oprah took her final bow and the curtain closed after a 25 years of legacy on a talk show that touched a lot of lives. Some felt like they've lost a bestfriend at the demise of this powerful show, yet some took it with bright smiles knowing they'll still see more of her in her OWN network. I, on the other hand, is taken back to a time when I tried to reach out to her and felt I was badly let down...

It was around late 1990's. I was still in the Philippines. Oprah, at that time was promoting a segment of the show where they will make your dreams come true. During that same time, My penpal, of now 27 years, were hoping, no, dreaming - for ages, to finally meet in person. The problem was, she's in the US. I was in the Philippines! We were young. We have no clue how to make our dream happen. I thought that, Oprah was the answer to our prayers! Halleluiah!


This once-naive self of mine went on to write Oprah and excitedly told her my "dream". I knew in my heart that she will make it come true! I believed in her that much. I mailed the letter. I waited weeks. Anxiously. Then that much-awaited day came. I got one, no, two, letters from Oprah. I was ecstatic! Why wouldn't I be? I just got a letter from Oprah! And two even! I can still remember how my hands shook from excitement and eagerness. I could hardly open the letters. But finally, I did. And as fast as the excitement appeared so was quickly replaced by sadness and despair. The letters were from a third person, not Oprah, and to sum it up, the letters pretty much said, we can't help you. Period. I was crushed.

I cried that night. Lots of tears.

I felt like I was never given a fair chance. Did Oprah ever got the chance to read my letter? I can only guess she did not. Up to this day, I wondered if it would have been a different story for me, if she did. But I probably will never know. The curtain has closed. Oprah is no more. And that chapter in my life will now remain, as it always has been, a memory of "what could have been"...

I kept the letters. For posterity. Piled inside a box with all the letters from family and friends I collected and kept through the years. I left it in the Philippines. Where it belongs. Memories of long time ago... meant to stay in the past but not forgotten. Up to this day, seeing all the people she has helped, and the lives she has changed and the millions of dollars she had given away, I still couldn't help thinking why she was unable to help me at that time. I may never know...

And I probably will never meet Oprah in person either. Nor would she even read this blog! Who am I kidding, right? I'm sure I will never ever know the answer to my "what could have been", but she, along with her own struggles and demons, have managed to help a lot of people more than I can account for with my own fingers and toes. It was just unfortunate that I wasn't one of them.

So yes, goodbye Oprah... Goodbye to "what could have been"...

** Just so you know this is not a hate post as what others may be speculating about now. On the contrary, this post is simply a poignant recollection of that particular day filled with both hope and despair and a day how Oprah, in an uncanny way, became a part of my past but not so much in a happy way.

Want to send your thoughts to Oprah? 
You can email her at

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  1. Very sweet post, Maricris. I'm sure there are millions more like you who put a lot of hope & faith in how Oprah could help you fulfill a dream. She has helped millions in one way or another. I'm sure you're one of them if you think about it :-) Selfishly, I wanted to be included in one of her 'favorite things shows.' I did get to go to a taping, so I count myself lucky. But I only got a slice of Hillary Clinton's 50th birthday cake, ha. I love the last photo in your post!

  2. I remember watching her for the first time when I was just 10 year old and being fascinated by her deep topics. She will be missed!

  3. Oh, I still remember watching her in some made-for-tv movie about this awfully-broke family (not at all unlike mine) and feeling like we had everything in common. Lovely post.

  4. I had a dream that I would publish a book and that it would make her book club. Oh well.


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