I’m only interested in one of them, however.
I gladly paid it for my VIP ticket to see Oprah in her Australian show and honestly, I’d have paid double.
My story isn’t unique. Every day I see women talking about how Oprah changed their lives. Women like me from single family homes, or from small towns, who say that Oprah has been our best teacher, showing us how to live our best lives.
Just because it’s cliched, doesn’t mean it’s not true.
It’s Oprah who encouraged me to go to university, not my family. It’s because of her influence that I married the nice guy, not the idiot who cheated on me multiple times.
It’s safe to say that my moral code was shaped more by Oprah than anyone else.
I became a mini-Oprah in high school, dishing out solicited and unsolicited advice to anyone with a problem, including a bed-wetting cousin and my best friend who wasn’t allowed to pluck her mono-brow.
Friend’s parents thought I was a negative influence until they realised I was pushing self-help books and second-hand Oprah-isms instead of drugs and alcohol.
A friend started calling me “Dr Phil” for my harsh, tell-it-like-it-is ‘wisdom’. It was a fine line between bossy and inspirational in those days.
And now, as a coach and mentor for women, it’s safe to say that my career was shaped in those afternoons watching the The Oprah Show after school.
Even now, Sunday is Oprah day in our house. She’s still teaching me how to live my best life.
I know I’m not alone in the debt I owe this remarkable woman, so I jumped at the opportunity to thank her in person.
I had a stellar seven-figure year in business in 2015, and I couldn’t figure out a memorable present for myself to mark the milestone.
A fancy pen? Nah, my toddler would likely break it. A trip away? Not that fun with a small child and a pregnant belly.
So when the VIP tickets became available, I didn’t hesitate. I was in the back of a car on a family trip with one per cent phone battery and sweaty palms, worried I’d miss out on the chance to get up and personal with Miss O herself.
I reminded my hubby how much he’d spent on football games over the years including going to the World Cup in Brazil. Oprah is MY David Beckham. My Rooney. But way better!
I read Bec Sparrow’s piece on why she bought a VIP ticket, and the comments were dismissive. “More money than sense”, “That’s why Oprah is so rich” and “The money would be better off going to charity”.
I do value money and donate to charity and Oprah doesn’t ‘need’ my money.
I don’t need a ‘return on investment’ from this event, or even the photo. I already have it. She’s been teaching me for years… for free.
This isn’t about the price of the ticket. This is the chance to pay homage to a woman who has greatly influenced the woman I am today.
If Oprah has taught us anything, it’s that our dreams are important. And we’re worth it.
By Denise Duffield-Thomas, the Newcastle-based founder of Lucky Bitch and an award-winning speaker, author and entrepreneur.