Oprah and Nate Berkus–Part II

nate

On yesterday’s Super Soul Sunday, Oprah continued her conversation with Nate Berkus.

Having survived one of the greatest disasters of our time, Nate  is not afraid to talk about the massive tsunami that took the life of 230,000+ people, among them his beloved Fernando. Nate speaks eloquently about the man who encouraged him to see life in a different way.

Throughout the hour telecast, I could easily visualize many of the scenes Nate described. The lovingly prepared knapsacks for needy children flying through the air. The mattress that appeared out of nowhere and wrapped itself around a telephone pole, allowing Nate and Fernando to hang on for a short while. Fernando, clinging to Nate, and then suddenly blown away, never to be seen again.

While grieving, Nate felt raw, insignificant and afraid. But with the love and support of his family and friends, he was able to come to terms with the fact that he was living a new normal.

Quotable Quotes…

If I can get to the light, I can breathe. ~Nate Berkus

All death is a reminder to turn up the volume on your life. ~Oprah

When the worst has happened and you are able to speak your truth, you get a lot done. ~Nate Berkus

Every day is the reason. ~Oprah

Witnessing was a gift. ~Nate Berkus

When people show you who they are, believe them…the first time.
~Maya Angelou

Oprah and Nate Berkus

nate

Yesterday, Nate Berkus sat down with Oprah on Super Soul Sunday to share intimate stories about the experiences that have transformed him.

He found his acorn within the oak at the age of thirteen. Getting his own room was definitely a milestone for the sensitive young man who cared about how things looked and felt. Having grown up around design and following his mother to auctions, estate and garage sales on the weekend, Nate appreciated  life in all its layers, textures and light.

While he was fortunate to have a loving and supportive family, he did not come out until his university years. Nate admitted to developing a skill set that made him dishonest and spending most of his adult life trying to get rid of it.

I was impressed and moved by how his step-father handled the situation. After discovering a letter from Nate’s lover, his step-father waited three months before having the conversation with Nate. He wanted his step-son to know that it didn’t matter and he wouldn’t be treated any differently. An excellent example of putting spiritual philosophy into spiritual action.

Nate also shared the lessons he learned from his talk show. While it was the opportunity of a lifetime, Nate realized during the second week of production that a daily program was not a good fit. Throughout the two-year run, he felt overwhelmed and exhausted. When Oprah pressed further, he admitted that ego and money factored into his original desire to have a talk show. Grateful for the experience, he now knows that he needs space and time around his decisions.

Quotable Quotes…

Everyone has the acorn within the oak that is you. (Oprah)

When you confide in your beloveds, give them the space to grieve the dreams they had for you.

If you’re not willing to stand up for who you are, then everything else does not matter.

I want your personality to come through in another language. (Cheryl Storm—French teacher)

If you cannot be authentic and true to yourself, it is hard to function.

I needed the freedom to create and design my own timeline.

Stop and take a beat before you acquire.