Back home, [my daughter] Gemmia was beside herself with joy. She knew, in a way that I did not, that something magnificent had been set into motion from that one appearance. She was always right. Within a few months Oprah premiered what she called Change Your Life Television, with a faculty of experts that included Dr. Phil, Suze Orman, and John Gray. I was invited to be a part of that faculty. It meant that I would appear on the show once a month. My area of expertise would be love and relationships. Oh joy! Oh rapture! 

Working with a few of the show's different producers, I appeared in several segments that were widely popular. One, which told the story of my life, was particularly meaningful to many viewers. Many of them knew my name, but few knew my story. With my entire family in the audience, I shared things about myself that had been healed but not exposed to public light. Oprah, an excellent interviewer, asked me a number of probing questions. The one that really caught my attention was, "How do you know when you have healed an issue?"

From a deep place within my gut I responded, "When you can tell the story and it doesn't bring up any pain, you know it is healed."

In that moment, on that stage, I was being as authentic as I knew how to be. I would not discover until much later that my personal lie was running my life and using my mouth.

One of the best shows during my time with Oprah was the men's show. On one side, the producers gathered a group of men of all ages, my husband among them, to talk about their challenges with women. On the other side was a group of women who were ready and willing to talk about their disappointments with men. My job was to help both sides get on the same side of the table. It was meant to be insightful, inspiring, and instructional, and it seemed pretty innocent—until one of the men made a comment about women only wanting men for their money and what they could provide. I offered several counterarguments, but he and a few of the others were intent on arguing me down. So, to make the point, I put another nail in the coffin of my marriage. With all of the sincerity I could muster, I stood there on national television and said:

"That may be true for some, but it is not true for all. I love my husband and he doesn't have any money. What he has is a huge heart and a lot of love for me. That is what really matters."

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