Despite growing up in poverty and losing a leg as a child, Bonnie St. John persevered and has achieved feats most people would never dare to attempt. Jean talks with Bonnie, a silver and bronze medal-winning Paralympic ski racer, author and motivational speaker, about her career, successes and advice for anyone who has ever imagined her dreams coming true.
Bonnie, who grew up in San Diego with two siblings and a single mother, always knew she had challenges to face, but she never backed down from any. She says she was teased because she was born with only one working leg and used a prosthesis, but that didn't keep her from a ski trip with a friend when she was a teen. Soon, Bonnie discovered she has a talent for skiing and went on to train with some of the best ski racers in the country, thanks to scholarships and donations she sought out on her own.
After attending Harvard University and becoming a Rhodes Scholar, Bonnie worked for a time in the White House. She says she eventually found her calling in writing books and being a public speaker."I felt like going out and inspiring people with my stories was something only I could do," she says.
Bonnie shares advice for anyone who wants to pursue her dreams and become financially secure:
If you want something badly enough, you can make it happen. Bonnie says she's living proof that any goal is possible. "If a one-legged black girl from San Diego can go to the Olympics in skiing, you can—even in this economy—turn yourself around financially," she says.
The best way to make money is to do something you love."You can make money, you can turn yourself around, but you don't have to sacrifice your values and who you are," she says. "You are better when you are doing what you believe in."
Printed from Oprah.com on Friday, December 13, 2013