“It is no coincidence that I always wanted to be a teacher. I ended up with the greatest classroom in the world. And this, my friends, will be our last class for this stage.”
There were no grand surprises, no makeovers or celebs. Taking the stage of her show for the finale time, Oprah Winfrey came to teach. The legendary talk-show host ended her 25 year television run by going back to basics. For one hour, Oprah spoke to the studio audience and millions of viewers, thanking them for their dedication and leaving us all with lessons to live by.
From her stage, Oprah dished out an inspirational uplifting message that encapsulated her journey and mission through the years. In today’s Washington Post, Sally Quinn hailed Oprah’s final show writing:
“Oprah’s final show was a sermon. She finally came out as a true religious leader, an image she has skirted around for these last 25 years…She managed to touch something in a lot of people and changed countless lives by giving her audience a spiritual message that they could apply to their own lives. Her message was inclusive and pluralistic rather than exclusive. Everyone belonged. Everyone had value…The pope couldn’t have done better.”
Now you can call Quinn’s assessment sacrilegious, but there is no disputing that Oprah was preaching truth yesterday. Here are some of the quotes from the final show that we will always remember:
“I’ve talked to 30,000 people on this show and they all wanted validation. Everybody wants to know, ‘Do you see me? Do you hear me? Does what I say mean anything?”
“Nobody but you is responsible for your life. You are responsible for your life. What is your life? What is all life? What is every flower, every rock, every tree? Energy. And you’re responsible for the energy you create for yourself, and you’re responsible for the energy that you bring to others.”
“Love one person. Then spread it to to. You’ll see how much of a difference it makes … It’s no coincidence that a lonely little girl who felt not a lot of love, grew up to feel the genuine trust, validation and love from you.”
“Start embracing the life that is calling you. Find your calling—know what sparks the light in you so you in your own way so that you can illuminate the world.”
“Don’t wait for someone else to complete you. ‘Jerry Maguire’ was just a movie.”
“There’s a difference between thinking you deserve to be happy and knowing that you are worthy of being happy. Your being alive makes worthiness your birthright. You alone are enough.”
“But I’m truly amazed that I, who started out in rural Mississippi in 1954, when the vision for a black girl was limited to being either a maid or a teacher in a segregated school, could end up here. It is no coincidence that a lonely little girl [and here Oprah tears up] who felt not a lot of love, even though my parents and grandparents did the best they could — it is no coincidence that I grew up to feel genuine kindness, affection, validation and trust from millions of you all over the world. From you whose names I will never know, I learned what love is. You and this show have been the great love of my life.”
Ending the show, Oprah ended an era. While some watcher her with teary eyes and others with a more critical eye- the one thing all could agree on was that yesterday’s show was the farewell of a woman who reshaped conversations and forever changes lives. Serving her purpose of being a “sweet inspiration,” Oprah has inspired millions to find their own calling as well.
Did you tune into see Oprah’s finale show? What were your thoughts? Was the farewell what you expected? Share your thoughts with us Clutchettes!