Oprah sent me a message that it was my birthday and I could do whatever I wanted to do. Though I was delighted to have her support, I also sensed that something had subtly shifted. The producers seemed a little less cordial and a little less amenable to my suggestions for the show. I decided to pray about it and hoped that everything would turn out for the best. Little did I know that I was revving up to sabotage everything I had dreamed of and worked for. Lesson number two: You do not get full-time blessings for part-time devotion.

The album debuted on Oprah as planned. Shortly thereafter, I got a hand-written note from a vice president at Buena Vista Television. I read the note in total amazement. The VP praised my work and wished me good luck. She gave me a telephone number and invited me to lunch at any time. So I picked up the telephone and called the number. Perhaps I thought I would leave a message letting her know that I had received her note. Perhaps I thought that it was good business to have the private telephone number of a television executive. Perhaps I just didn't think. My personal lie of not being good enough simply could not pass up such a self-destructive bonanza.

I was completely unprepared when she answered the telephone on the second ring. When I introduced myself, she squealed and thanked me for calling. She said she'd been trying to contact me for some time but had been told that I had a six-figure deal with Harpo. You would think that, knowing I did have a deal on the table at Harpo, I would just keep my mouth shut. You would be wrong. Instead, I helpfully explained that while I had a wonderful working relationship with Harpo, I did not have a six-figure deal.

A few days later, she called me. Her boss had an idea for a television show on relationships that she thought I could help her develop. She assured me that all they wanted to do was pick my brain. When she told me her boss's name, my mouth dropped open. Why in the world would Barbara Walters need my advice? Apparently they were getting nowhere with the show, and Ms. Walters felt that I could help them find a new approach.

©Iyanla Vanzant 2010. All rights reserved. Reprinted with the permission of SmileyBooks.