Oprah Talks to Quincy Jones
Oprah: How did you come back to yourself?
Quincy: I called Dr. Norton and said, "I'm losing my mind, and I need you to help me find a sanitorium." He said, "You will never lose your mind. I know you too well."
Oprah: So the whole time you were on Halcion, no one had ever asked you what you were taking?
Quincy: No—but they had no reason to because I knew how to play over it. But by this time, I couldn't play over anything. When I called Dr. Norton, he said, "You haven't had a dream? What are you taking?" When I said Halcion, he said, "Are you nuts?" I said, "Yes, I am." He then put me on Valium. "All you need is two dreams," he said, "and you'll be okay." When he said that, tears started streaming down my face. By the second night, I was dreaming again. I was so happy that I stopped taking the Valium. I was back to being human. All my sensual thoughts and my joy came back. Greens were greener, people's eyes were deeper and warmer, and I felt like I could look right into others' souls.
Oprah: What did that experience teach you?
Quincy: The same thing the brain operation taught me: that you have to tell the people you care about how much you care about them. Just let it all out. I was so happy to be alive.
Oprah: Do you have any regrets?
Quincy: My only regrets are about my children. When they were growing up, I didn't know how to be there for them. I think my son got hit hardest. Maybe it was the Oedipus complex: My 4-year-old boy wanted to take care of his mother, and to do that he had to turn against his father a bit. That didn't straighten out until much later.
Oprah: I heard that one Thanksgiving you and all the mothers, wives, and children were together. How can you all get along so well?
Quincy: There was a time when I would battle with my ex-wives, and the kids would be dying inside. There's something immoral about making children suffer so you can be right, so I decided it wasn't worth it. I chose to make peace so they could feel better. Why damage them any more than they'd been damaged?
Oprah: Do you think you damaged your kids in the early years?
Quincy: A little bit.
Oprah: Because they wanted you and they couldn't have you.
Quincy: Yes—but resolving that has been helpful, even cathartic, particularly for my son and me. Because we had to work through all of that, we really talk now. We're close.