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Valentine’s Gift Spectacular! (you’re gonna them all)

Y O U R

B E S T

L I F E

ÔÔYou

are not alone!

ÔÔ

L I V E

—OPRAH

WE’RE STARTING A CONVERSATION ABOUT ANXIETY, DEPRESSION, HELP AND HOPE... Join us on pg. 96

The 3 best things you can do for your face today

Get glowing, pg. 116

THE BRA OF YOUR DREAMS

Practical and pretty!

THE SIMPLE TRICK THAT JUST MIGHT SAVE YOUR LIFE PG. 86


CONTENTS

February 2016 Special: The State of Our Minds

96

The Storm Inside

THE STORM INSIDE

9 6 We talk about mental health, but we rarely talk about mental illness—though it touches so many of us, and the effects can be so devastating. In the first of a three-part series, O is starting the conversation, with frank personal stories, smart advice about therapy and medication, and the things everyone needs to find peace of mind.

“Help will arrive the moment you inhale, let out a courageous breath, and ask.”

Features 1 1 6 YOUR FACE: AN OWNER’S MANUAL Getting gorgeous skin doesn’t have to be complicated. Our no-fuss guide has a three-step routine that will leave you all aglow. 131

1 2 2 HER WILDEST DREAMS Refugee Hawa Diallo was hiding from the world—until she discovered the worlds hidden inside her. By Amy Maclin

“Traditional recipes are great, but something magical happens when you mix things up.”

ON THE COVER: Oprah photographed by Ruven Afanador. FASHION EDITOR: Jenny Capitain. HAIR: Nicole Mangrum. MAKEUP: Derrick Rutledge. MANICURE: Roseann Singleton using Dior Vernis at Art Department. SET DESIGN: Charlotte Malmlöf. ON OPRAH: Sweater, Donna Karan. Earrings, Dina Mackney Designs. Clockwise from top: Ring, Yossi Harari. Bracelet, Roberto Coin. Ring, Elena Votsi. Bracelet, Gurhan. For details see Shop Guide.

37

LET’S EAT!

MARTHA BECK

25

LIVE YOUR BEST LIFE

“When I fly, it’s just me with a laptop and my imagination.”

2

OPRAH.COM

FEBRUARY 2016


Live Your Best Life

6 2 GREAT BUYS

Reading Room

2 5 INSPIRATION,

Can’t wait for spring? Get ready to blossom in the season’s best separates and accessories.

9 0 Two reporters on the mysterious and moving history of autism...Darryl Pinckney’s glittering, claustrophobic portrait of life in 1980s Berlin...a newly discovered narrative that fills a gap in African American history...the newest Nobel laureate on collecting “stories of human souls”...ten international gems to pick up now, including a Mexican romp whose hero owes his smile to Marilyn Monroe and a Gillian Flynn–esque Argentine thriller...and more.

MOTIVATION, CELEBRATION THE O LIST

55

A mother and daughter who make the good times roll at Mardi Gras... playwright and actress Danai Gurira on the surprising places fame has taken her...a scientist who’s adding new color to the makeup industry’s palette...a dogged masseuse...and more.

Plus: THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GAYLE

Editor at large Gayle King gets ready for some football and takes a closer look at Gwen Stefani’s stylish specs.

May We Help You? 3 7 MARTHA BECK How to blow off steam without getting burned. 4 3 SUZE ORMAN Read this before you and your love fall head over heels into financial woe. 4 4 DEAR LISA A doctor dodger, a disheartened dreamer, and the dillydalliers with their faces stuck in their phones: Writer at large Lisa Kogan untangles it all.

“Get your dark chocolate on with these faceted rubies.”

4 6 DR. OZ Should you take an aspirin daily? Four factors to consider before you pop a pill. 4 8 IYANLA VANZANT In their final talk, Iyanla Vanzant helps a former control freak fully heal.

The O List 5 5 A few things for Valentine’s Day we think are just great!

Love That!

5 8 WHY IT’S WORTH IT A two-in-one purse that’s truly twice as nice.

YOUR FACE: AN OWNER’S MANUAL

116

6 0 ADAM’S STYLE SHEET Got a bra-blem? Creative director Adam Glassman rounds up supportive solutions for every silhouette.

UNDER $100!

6 8 ADAM’S STYLE SHEET: HOME EDITION Marble-swirled accents add rock-solid style to any room.

O, Beautiful! 7 3 The new floral scent that makes our hearts skip a beat, one couple’s quest for fragrance harmony, and four intoxicatingly sultry perfumes.

Let’s Eat!

Plus: VAL’S BEAUTY BUZZ Beauty director Valerie Monroe on the prettiest eyeshadow palette for spring, a honey of a lipstick, an instant split-end smoother, plant-powered moisturizers, and more.

In Every Issue

Feeling Good

14 16 17 20 23 137 138

7 8 PAP SMEARS IN

AISLE 5!

In-store clinics are suddenly everywhere—and they give one-stop shopping a whole new meaning. Leslie Goldman investigates. 8 4 HAVE A HEARTHEALTHY DAY

Cardiologist Tara Narula, MD, shares nine ways to treat your ticker right, 24/7.

8 6 PERSON FIRST, PATIENT SECOND

The secret to getting better care from your doctor: Reveal yourself, writes Theresa Williamson, MD.

Plus: BOOST YOUR BURN Three effortless tweaks to turn up the heat in your workout. By Elyse Moody 8 8 POWER FLOUR Jessica Migala tries six alternative flours made from surprising— and nutritious— ingredients: beans, bananas...crickets?

1 3 1 Chef Einat Admony offers a zesty taste of her homeland...a cornucopia of finds, favorites, and quick fixes, from lovely lattes to irresistible queso...plus, our guide to turning three key ingredients into delectable dishes.

CONTRIBUTORS BEHIND THE SCENES THE QUESTION WE HEAR YOU! OPRAH: HERE WE GO! SHOP GUIDE OPRAH: WHAT I KNOW FOR SURE

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP RIGHT: GREGOR HALENDA. RICHARD MAJCHRZAK. REBECCA CHEW. MAARTEN DE BOER/CONTOUR BY GETTY IMAGES. MOUNI FEDDAG. EMILY KATE ROEMER. HUGH KRETSCHMER.

62

GREAT BUYS UNDER $100!

FEBRUARY 2016

@OPRAHMAGAZINE

3


© 2016 Pandora Jewelry, LLC All rights reserved • PANDORA.NET


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Simulation of actual product results on lashes enhanced with lash inserts. Maybelline.com/lashsensational Christy is wearing New Lash SensationalÂŽ Luscious Mascara in Very Black.

The lush things in life. I live for it.


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What’s your go-to stress reliever?

FOUNDER AND EDITORIAL DIRECTOR

Oprah Winfrey

Yoga, a warm bath—or if all else fails, sour-creamand-onion potato chips.

The ocean. Just looking at the waves is all I need.

EDITOR IN CHIEF

Lucy Kaylin

EDITOR AT LARGE

Gayle King

DEPUTY EDITOR

Deborah Way

CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Adam Glassman

DIRECTOR OF DIGITAL EDITIONS AND LIFESTYLE

Michelle Shih

DESIGN DIRECTOR

Jill Armus BOOKS EDITOR

Leigh Haber

ARTICLES ARTICLES EDITOR Katie Arnold-Ratliff HEALTH EDITOR Jihan Thompson FASHION FEATURES EDITOR Clarissa Cruz SENIOR ASSOCIATE EDITORS Elyse Moody, Molly Simms ASSOCIATE EDITOR Zoe Donaldson ASSISTANT EDITOR Dotun Akintoye

The Simpsons, but only seasons 3 through 9.

FASHION

FASHION MARKET/ACCESSORIES DIRECTOR Robin Beck Nazzaro ACCESSORIES EDITOR Paula Lee FASHION MARKET EDITOR Kristina Lepore BOOKINGS EDITOR Alicia Bridgewater Lanigan FASHION ASSISTANT Zoë Roscoe Long, rambling, absurd, impenetrable conversations with close friends.

STYLE CONTRIBUTING STYLE EDITOR Kelley S. Carter STYLE ASSISTANT Manouska Jeantus BEAUTY EXECUTIVE BEAUTY EDITOR Megan Deem BEAUTY ASSISTANT Melissa Goldberg

A D M I N I S T R AT I O N EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT TO THE EDITOR IN CHIEF Karla L. Gonzalez SPECIAL PROJECTS MANAGER Kristi Stewart ASSISTANT TO THE EDITOR AT LARGE Joseph Zambrano CONTRIBUTING EDITORS AND WRITERS

Martha Beck, Nate Berkus, Donna Brazile, Brené Brown, PhD, Meredith Bryan, Michelle Burford, Kym Canter, Jenny Capitain, Susan Casey, Bob Greene, Sanjay Gupta, MD, Andrew Holden, Phillip C. McGraw, PhD, Suze Orman, Mehmet Oz, MD, Maria Shriver, Iyanla Vanzant, Peter Walsh

I N S TAG R A M M E R O F T H E M O N T H

@sherribaby229 An overnight stay in New York City, by myself. There’s something about being among a mass of people without uttering a single word that helps me regroup.

EXECUTIVE EDITOR

Amy Maclin

BEAUTY DIRECTOR

Valerie Monroe

WRITER AT LARGE

Lisa Kogan

Earplugs for a moment of quiet.

PRODUCTION ASSISTANT MANAGING EDITOR Megan F. Chiriani COPY COPY CHIEF Adrienne Didik SENIOR COPY EDITOR Lisa DeLisle COPY EDITOR Christina Doka RESEARCH CHIEF OF RESEARCH Naomi Barr SENIOR RESEARCH EDITOR Bradley Rife RESEARCH EDITOR Tracey Thomas Hosmer

Running. I never ran before age 45, but had I known how it would ease my mind, I would’ve done it as soon as I could walk.

INTERNS ART George Prah EDITORIAL Constance Capone, Maggie Stamets,

Linda Tran, Nicholas Valsalen FASHION Daniella Chavero, Rachel Kaufman, Jessica Pavlik, Carlotta Porta PHOTO Kerry-Anne Doyle, Mackenzie Lestan STYLE Christina Santos, Alexis Thomas CONTRIBUTING FRIEND

Lynn Hadley

OPRAH.COM EDITOR IN CHIEF Mamie Healey EXECUTIVE EDITOR Naomi Kim SENIOR WEB EDITOR Ruth Baron WEB EDITOR Katherine Fung FOOD EDITOR Lynn Andriani HEALTH EDITOR Emma Haak BOOKS EDITOR Leigh Newman CONTRIBUTING COPY EDITOR Myles Evans CONTRIBUTING WEB PRODUCERS Pamela Masin, Joann Pan, Ashley Sepanski CONTRIBUTING WEB ASSISTANT Samantha Allen WEB INTERN Mya Abraham

FEBRUARY 2016

PHOTO DIRECTOR

Christina Weber

PHOTO PHOTO EDITOR Scott M. Lacey ASSOCIATE PHOTO EDITOR Viviana Quevedo PHOTO RESEARCHER Deirdre Read

Ellen Levine

OPRAH.COM

Adam Bell

ART ART DIRECTOR Jessica Weit DEPUTY ART DIRECTOR Gillian MacLeod ASSOCIATE ART DIRECTOR Lauren Stine DEPUTY ART DIRECTOR, DIGITAL Bryan Farevaag DIGITAL EDITIONS DESIGNER Liz Chan DIGITAL IMAGE SPECIALIST Carlos Paredes

EDITORIAL DIRECTOR

8

MANAGING EDITOR & DIRECTOR, EDITORIAL PARTNERSHIPS

The woes of a neverending, anxietyridden day can always be undone with sweatpants.


© Clinique Laboratories, LLC

Our light bulb moment. If a woman can do at least four things at once, her skin care should too. Visibly erase wrinkles. Even skin tone. Lift. Hydrate.

New

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Allergy Tested.100% Fragrance Free. ee


SUPERSOUL IS THE REASON I WANTED TO BUILD THE OWN NETWORK. IT WAS MY HEARTÕS DESIRE TO CREATE A GATHERING OF SPIRITUAL THOUGHT LEADERS TO STIMULATE AND INSPIRE US TO MOVE IN THE DIRECTION OF OUR TRUEST CALLING Ð TO BECOME MORE OF WHO WE ARE.

E X C L U S I V E LY O N


What’s your go-to stress reliever?

SENIOR VICE PRESIDENT/PUBLISHER & CHIEF REVENUE OFFICER

Jayne Jamison

ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER/SALES

Julia Fry

Getting a blow-out.

If I had a stress reliever, I might be in better shape.

ASSOCIATE PUBLISHER/MARKETING

Michael D. Small

GENERAL MANAGER

Nancy Denholtz

ADVERTISING DIRECTOR

Beth McClain

Taking my son and dog to the park and watching them run until they drop.

EXECUTIVE BEAUTY DIRECTOR Patricia Foster FOOD AND BEVERAGE DIRECTOR Mindy Miller STYLE DIRECTORS

Courtney Kumpf,

Christine Potter Mulhearne EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, HEALTH Ron Balasco SALES ASSOCIATE Laura Quagliariello MIDWEST ACCOUNT DIRECTOR

Audra Langford MIDWEST SALES DIRECTOR Robin Billie

WESTERN ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Kathleen Olson

CREATIVE SERVICES DIRECTOR Sarah Massimo EXECUTIVE MARKETING DIRECTOR Ashley O’Brien ASSOCIATE INTEGRATED MARKETING DIRECTOR Brittany Davis ASSOCIATE INTEGRATED MARKETING MANAGERS

Linet Beras, Arisara Srisethnil

RESEARCH STRATEGIST Sara Bravmann PROMOTION DESIGNER Alida Masuck MARKETING COORDINATOR Jennifer Lavoie CONSUMER MARKETING DIRECTOR William F. Carter ADVERTISING SERVICES DIRECTOR Felicia Kinscy

NORTHWEST ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Lisa Goodman

GROUP PRODUCTION DIRECTOR Chuck Lodato

DETROIT REPRESENTATIVE Mary Pat Kaleth, Media Project Solutions

GROUP PRODUCTION MANAGER Connie Black

SOUTHWEST REPRESENTATIVE Staci Ferber, Wisdom Media LLC TRAVEL AND TOURISM REPRESENTATIVE John Hudak ITALIAN REPRESENTATIVE Robert Schoenmaker VICE PRESIDENT, HEARST DIRECT MEDIA Christine Hall SENIOR ACCOUNT MANAGER, HEARST DIRECT MEDIA Michael Rohr CENTRALIZED BILLING SERVICES COORDINATOR Dominique Restucci

Cleaning. When my living space is in order, so is my life.

ASSOCIATE PRODUCTION MANAGER Karen Nazario EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT TO THE SVP/PUBLISHER Kelsey Reynolds BUSINESS COORDINATOR

Katheryn Remulla

ADVERTISING ASSISTANTS Melissa Loughlin, Rishika Mahtani,

Katie H. Phan, Megan Reilly RESEARCH MANAGER Tina Giberti

P U B L I S H E D BY H E A R S T C O M M U N I CAT I O N S , I N C . PRESIDENT & CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Steven R. Swartz CHAIRMAN William R. Hearst III

EXECUTIVE VICE CHAIRMAN Frank A. Bennack, Jr.

HEARST MAGAZINES DIVISION PRESIDENT David Carey PRESIDENT, MARKETING & PUBLISHING DIRECTOR Michael A. Clinton PUBLISHING CONSULTANTS Gilbert C. Maurer, Mark F. Miller

Lifting weights three times a week. When I focus on something so physical, my mind can’t be distracted.

EDITORIAL OFFICES

300 West 57th Street, 36th Floor, New York, NY 10019 ADVERTISING OFFICES

NEW YORK: 300 West 57th Street, 36th Floor, New York, NY 10019 (212-903-5366; fax: 212-903-5388) CHICAGO: One South Wacker Drive, Chicago, IL 60606 (312-251-5358; fax: 312-251-5311)

DETROIT: Media Project Solutions, 943 South Shady Hollow Circle, Bloomfield Hills, MI 48304 (248-931-5256; fax: 248-644-1880) LOS ANGELES: 3000 Ocean Park Boulevard, Santa Monica, CA 90405 (310-664-2910; fax: 310-664-2913) SAN FRANCISCO: 550 Kearny Street, Suite 500, San Francisco, CA 94108 (415-844-6384; fax: 415-844-6397) SOUTHWEST: Wisdom Media LLC, 3131 Turtle Creek Boulevard, Suite 450, Dallas, TX 75219 (214-526-3800; fax: 214-526-1475) TRAVEL AND TOURISM: Madden Media, 345 East Toole Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85701 (phone and fax: 520-322-0895) ITALY: Hearst Advertising Worldwide, Via R. Bracco, 6, 20159 Milano, Italy (+39-02-62694441; rschoenmaker@hearst.it) FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE AND SUBSCRIPTION QUESTIONS,

such as renewals, address changes, email preferences, billing, and account status, go to service.theoprahmag.com, or write to O, The Oprah Magazine, P.O. Box 6000, Harlan, IA 51593. See Shop Guide. PRINTED IN THE U.S.A.

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OPRAH.COM

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Blasting “It Must’ve Been Love” by Roxette or “November Rain” by Guns N’ Roses and singing at the top of my lungs when I’m alone in my car.


rave

Something new to

about.

Introducing the Beyond the Scale program, a personalized approach that focuses on you, not just the number on the scale. Like new SmartPoints,ª which guide you to healthier eating that goes beyond calorie counting. Now thatÕs something to rave about. Join for free.* Details at weightwatchers.com

* Join Free Offer: Joining fee waived with purchase of any subscription plan by 3/14/16. Plans auto-renew monthly until you cancel. Available for Meetings in participating areas only. © 2015 Weight Watchers International, Inc. All rights reserved.


Contributors

Peace Out

Five of this month’s creative minds on the art of staying calm, cool, and collected.

CYNTHIA BOND

EINAT ADMONY

KYLA MARSHELL

AMY BLOOM

NOMOCO

“Back to Life, Back to Reality” page 99

“Club Med” page 131

“Another Way of Seeing” page 101

“The Music They Hear” page 90

“The Storm Inside” page 96

Chef

Writer

Writer

Illustrator

The last time I asked for help was...when I was

The last time I asked for help was...on my new

The last time I asked for help was...at the grocery

The last time I asked for help was...when my

The last time I asked for help was...when I felt

finishing the screenplay for my novel Ruby and needed a final push. I liken the writing process to giving birth and my friends becoming doulas for me—they hold my hand and remind me there’s life after.

restaurant’s opening night. I had no babysitter, but then my younger brother saved the day.

store while I was trying to reach the caraway seeds on the top shelf. Then I saw a tall person!

I could really use a break from...overthinking—it’s

I could really use a break from...social media.

husband opened a package for me. FedEx boxes have always eluded me—now I just hand them over to him.

overwhelmed with too many things to do in a short amount of time. I bought a self-help book, and it helped me finish everything on my list.

exhausting. If I reach out to a friend and don’t get a response, I have to remind myself that everyone has their own life. No need to take their silence personally.

Ninety percent of the time it doesn’t add anything to my life. I don’t really need to know your five favorite colors.

I could really use a break from...the I-405 freeway in L.A. during rush hour.

When I think of a calming place, I picture...the beach. I love to make elaborate sand castles with moats.

My form of therapy is... going to church. And actual therapy. Woven together, they feel like a blanket I wrap around myself for support.

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OPRAH.COM

When I think of a calming place, I picture...a town in Costa Rica called Santa Teresa. I’ve visited several times, and I feel tranquil the second I get off the plane. We grill fresh fish, surf, and relax.

My form of therapy is... cooking and having sex.

FEBRUARY 2016

When I think of a calming place, I picture...lying on the grass in Prospect Park in Brooklyn. I go when everyone is at work—it feels like my own secret spot.

My form of therapy is... dancing to “I Know You, I Live You” by Chaka Khan. It’s upbeat and high-energy.

I could really use a break from...people saying they miss the “good old days.” Which ones? The ones when women couldn’t vote? Because I certainly don’t.

I could really use a break from...work. Things I see and hear in my everyday life somehow make their way into my art.

When I think of a calming place, I picture...the small

When I think of a calming place, I picture...walking

village in Connecticut where I live. The first time I saw it I thought, Oh, this is what I’ve been looking for.

through towering trees on the soft, leafy ground in London’s Epping Forest.

My form of therapy is...

chatting with my family while drinking beer and eating Japanese food. It makes me feel lighter.

a cup of tea, a trashy mystery novel, my couch, and nightfall.

My form of therapy is...

BOND: JAMES EDWARD HARRIS. ADMONY: ANIA GRUCA. MARSHELL: J. SHOTTI. BLOOM: ELENA SEIBERT. NOMOCO: COURTESY OF NOMOCO.

Writer


Perricone MD

Re:Firm Surface Recovery Treatment

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Serious About Beauty SEPHORA NORDSTROM ULTA

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Behind the Scenes GOING FOR

the Gold

Shimmery touches accented everything from Oprah’s skin to her accessories. “WHEN WE WERE PLANNING this cover, my inspiration was the monochromatic golden palette you often see on J. Lo and Beyoncé,” says O’s creative director, Adam Glassman. “Gold looks amazing on every skin tone.” Of course, as Oprah’s makeup artist, Derrick Rutledge, points out, a surprising number of shades can go into achieving a monochromatic effect. “I created a smoky eye with brown and gold and used a nude lipstick and a glimmery gloss on her lips.” Nudes also flatter nails, says Oprah’s manicurist, Roseann Singleton: “They make hands look longer and leaner.” And that’s golden. —MEGAN DEEM

CAMERA-READY Photographer Ruven Afanador lines up the perfect shot at Jack Studios in New York City.

Mixed Messages

Glow for It

“Wearing gold jewelry isn’t about being matchy-matchy,” Glassman says. “Putting together different tones looks more modern.” SHINE

Don’t go overboard: Highlight one feature with gold and keep the rest of your makeup neutral.

TEXTURE 2

1

1 1

2

Ruven and Oprah kid around between shots.

Don’t be afraid to combine finishes.

3 3 4 5

4 Shine: 1. Roberto Demeglio, $330 to $618 each; robertodemegliousa.com. 2. $350; citizenwatch.com. 3. $38; rjgraziano.com. 4. Kenneth Jay Lane, $100; 877-953-5264. Texture: 1. Ben-Amun by Isaac Manevitz, $170; ben-amun.com. 2. $245; stephaniekantis.com. 3. $190; freidarothman.com. 4. Cuff (top), A.V. Max, $98; anthropologie.com. Cuff, A.V. Max, $90; avmaxnyc.com.

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OPRAH.COM

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1. Make Up For Ever Artist Plexi-Gloss in 100P (left) and 102P, $19 each; sephora.com. 2. Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Camelflage, $8; drugstores. 3. CoverGirl TruNaked Shadow Palette in Golden, $13; drugstores. 4. Clé de Peau Beauté Extra Rich Lipstick in (from top) 102, 101, and 201, $65 each; cledepeaubeaute.com. 5. Diorskin Nude Air Glowing Gardens Illuminating Powder in Glowing Nude, $58; dior.com.

SIOUX NESI (2). STILL LIFES: BEN GOLDSTEIN/STUDIO D. LIP GLOSSES: RICHARD MAJCHRZAK/STUDIO D. WATCH AND FREIDA ROTHMAN EARRINGS: COURTESY OF COMPANIES.

4

3

2


The Question This month we’re wondering...

What brings you peace of mind?

JAN HAMBY

Quarryville, Pennsylvania

JOANNE DOYLE

Salisbury, Maryland

Knowing that my two children married their soul mates and that my grandkids were born into a family where love knows no bounds. It makes me feel extremely secure.

Sitting peacefully outside and taking in God’s creations: the sounds of birds chirping, the smell of fresh air, the color of the sky. I realize I’m also a part of the beautiful picture I’m taking in.

My book club, which is in its 24th year. Even though membership has changed over time (some moved away; others were busy with work or family), the constant is a group of women who enjoy discussion and camaraderie. It’s a supportive and safe environment.

DEBORAH J. HOLMES

PEGGY TERRY

My daily meditation session. I sit still and “hear” the quiet. That’s my cue to remember everything is fine.

Newborns. They remind me that even with all the hate and violence in the world, God still has a plan for us. Babies signify that life goes on and things get better—that stills my anxious heart.

ANNETTE THOMAS

RAY: KEITH RAY. SPEAR: SAMUEL L. SPEAR JR. THOMAS: STEFANI SCOTT. TERRY: COURTESY OF PEGGY TERRY.

Clarkston, Michigan On the nights I can’t turn my thoughts off, I lie in bed thinking about all the things I did or didn’t do, and next thing you know, I’m reminiscing about the past. Then I realize that tomorrow is a new day— and I get a do-over!

Knowing I have the power to lead my life in the direction I choose. Anytime I’m at an impasse, I remind myself that I’m in control and I’m not reliant on anyone else.

Swimming. As I dive into the water, I say to myself, You’re entering a liquid field of joy. I feel encouraged, motivated, and prepared to keep moving forward. If I can’t swim because of the weather, I imagine how the water feels flowing through my fingers, over my shoulders, down my legs—and I smile.

CASSONDRA LOPEZ

KENYA SPEAR

SHIRLEY RAY

Livonia, Michigan

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Delray Beach, Florida

Austin

Oxford, North Carolina

IRENE Y. MORALES El Paso, Texas

I say the words of the 14thcentury mystic Julian of

When was the last time you went through a meaningful transformation? OUR NEXT QUESTION Tell us at oprah.com/question or email us at thequestion@hearst.com, and your response could be featured in our April issue. Submissions chosen for publication may be edited for length and clarity. All submissions become the property of Hearst Communications, Inc., and may be published, along with the name of the individual, in any and all O, The Oprah Magazine–branded media now known or hereafter developed.

BIANCA JACKSON Dallas

@O_Magazine FOLLOW US

Knitting a gift for someone who needs warmth. Once I return to my problems—trivial or serious—they feel smaller.

Norwich: “All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well.”

facebook.com/oprahmagazine pinterest.com/oprah @oprahmagazine

FEBRUARY 2016

@OPRAHMAGAZINE

17


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Sofia is wearing Simply Ageless 3-IN-1 Liquid Foundation in Soft Honey


We Hear You! In December, you gave it up for giving.

I had already started feeling stressed about what to buy my mom, dad, sister, friends, everyone for the holidays...and then I read your beautiful article “Comfort & Joy.” The stories people told about the most meaningful gift they’d ever received were not only moving, but the perfect reminder that I don’t need to spend a lot to show people how much I love them. You inspired me to think outside my wallet.

OLIVIA MULLEN San Francisco

I could not let this day end without telling you how much I thoroughly enjoyed “Comfort & Joy.” Reading each and every one of the little joyful stories took me to such a warm, daydreamy place. I wish you had this section every month—not just at holiday time.

PHYLLIS UPDIKE

Carmel, Indiana

A Friend Writes...

My magic wand lit through your December mastheads, granting all wishes for the O staff’s dream gifts, from Britney Spears tickets to a faster metabolism. But the wish that twanged my heart, the one that I wished, too, was from Circle of Friends contributor Kim Houchen, who said she’d like to get back her friend who passed away. What any of us wouldn’t give for one more minute with the lovers, friends, family, acquaintances, or furry ones we’ve lost. A heartfelt wish. True words, Kim, and thank you for saying them.

ROBIN NICHOLAS

Northridge, California

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OPRAH.COM

FEBRUARY 2016

Add to Cart!

One of Anita’s favorite things is that Oprah’s Favorite Things are now available on Amazon.com. Whoever thought of this deserves a bonus!

ANITA HUNTER

Newark, Delaware

Chronic Misunderstanding

Thank you for “I’m Not Just Tired!,” your article about chronic fatigue syndrome, which I have suffered with for 11 years. On top of all the physical issues, to also have doctors tell you your illness isn’t real is the worst thing that can happen. But when the mainstream media, like O, take notice of this disease, people will really start to care and maybe do something.

PARIS ABELL

New York City Thank you, thank you, thank you for the wonderful article on chronic fatigue syndrome, which was both accurate and respectful. Your coverage legitimizes a disease that has devastated my life for 20 years, and it helps me with the burden of educating family and friends.

LAURA CORBETT

Mountain View, California

SEEN AND HEARD A photographer, a firefighter, a New Orleans clothing designer, a cowgirl, and a plus-size model. What do these women have in common? Snapshots of their lives appeared in our January issue as part of #MyStory, the groundbreaking campaign we’re partnering on with Instagram to share with the world. You can get in on the action, too: Take a picture that tells your story and post it to Instagram with a brief description, tagging @oprahmagazine and using the hashtags #MyStory and #MyOMagStory. It just might appear in a future issue.

COVER: RUVEN AFANADOR

Cherish the Thought


©2016 P&G

AGE IS JUST A NUMBER Olay Total Effects fights 7 signs of aging. Reviving skin to look up to 10 years younger in 4 weeks. So your skin won’t show your age. #BEAGELESS


GOOD TASTE. WHAT ELSE DO YOU NEED?

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Here We Go!

FASHION EDITOR: JENNY CAPITAIN. HAIR: NICOLE MANGRUM. MAKEUP: DERRICK RUTLEDGE. MANICURE: ROSEANN SINGLETON USING CHANEL LE VERNIS AT ART DEPARTMENT. ON OPRAH: DRESS, LAFAYETTE 148 NEW YORK. EARRINGS, MISH NEW YORK. RING, ANGELA CUMMINGS FOR ASSAEL. WEDGES, STUART WEITZMAN. FOR DETAILS SEE SHOP GUIDE.

I

“Welcome to an issue of O like no other, in which we tackle a subject too often misunderstood.”

MAGINE THAT YOU have a serious illness. Imagine that when you try to explain it to your friends and family, they don’t understand, or worse, don’t sympathize. Imagine, in fact, that they blame you for being sick. Imagine that this illness makes it hard to live happily or even comfortably. And after all this, imagine how easy it would be to lose hope. Welcome to an issue of O like no other, in which we tackle a subject too often misunderstood: mental illness. In the first installment of our three-part series, we’re shining a light on the experiences of people living with depression, anxiety, and other psychological difficulties—conditions that affect nearly one in five Americans—in hopes that their stories will help shatter the stigma that even in the 21st century still shames those in need of help (page 96). You’ll learn what survivors have done to make it through their darkest times. You’ll also hear from doctors about the miracles of psychiatric medicine, how to navigate therapy, and what to say to someone in pain. Changing the way we think about mental illness starts with each one of us. So we’re starting the conversation—and we hope you’ll join in. Read on....

PHOTOGRAPH BY Jake Rosenberg of The Coveteur

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Savor the dark

Slow-Melting Chocolate. Complex Flavor. Unrivaled Intensity. In Ten Luxurious Varieties.


Live Life YOUR BEST

I N S PI R AT ION , MO T I VAT ION , C E L E B R AT ION

“I like living. I have sometimes been wildly despairing, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.”

NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC CREATIVE

—AGATHA CHRISTIE

PHOTOGRAPH BY Alex Treadway

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Live

YOUR BEST

Life

The Gratitude Meter Five things we can’t stop smiling about this month.

5 4 3

O LIBS

2

Jason Sudeikis

1

THE FIRST THING I DO WHEN I GET HOME IS...take a nice, long thoughtful look around. Just to make sure I didn’t wander into the wrong house.

1

2

3

4

5

A STITCH IN TIME Meet the fairy godmother of hair. After her friend’s daughter was treated for lymphoma, Holly Christensen made the 3-year-old a fanciful Rapunzel wig. That act was spun into the Magic Yarn Project, a group that stitches together and donates head coverings inspired by Disney princesses. Find out how you can help at themagicyarn project.com.

MONUMENT MAN British photographer Richard McCor is a real cutup. Known as Paperboyo to his 100,000-plus Instagram followers, McCor turns iconic European landmarks into everyday objects with the help of simple paper cutouts. Through his lens, the London Eye rolls along as a snazzy bicycle wheel, while the Arc de Triomphe turns into a giant robot. (@paperboyo)

THE WAY THINGS WERE We like what one eldercare facility in Pennsylvania has done with the place. The Easton Home has turned several spaces into “memory support” areas— a 1940s-style kitchen with a cast-iron stove, hallways decorated with historical mementos—to help residents with dementia flex their memory muscles and to stimulate conversation.

STATE DU JOUR Now every meal can be served with a side of pride, thanks to the Fifty United Plates, a collection of porcelain cookware from Detroit company Corbé. Each simple, handcrafted dish is microwave- and oven-safe, so you can create a Maine blueberry buckle in the shape of the Pine Tree State. We’ll raise a fork to that. (corbecompany.com)

FOR THE RECORD Celebrate African American History Month by honoring an incomparable athlete. Race, out February 19, follows track-and-field star Jesse Owens (played by Stephan James) on his journey from Ohio State to the 1936 Berlin Olympic Games, where the triumphant speedster won four gold medals and left Nazi Germany’s athletes in the dust.

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—ZOE DONALDSON

AND THE LAST THING I DO BEFORE I GO TO BED IS...make a mental checklist of all the things I didn’t get done that day and add them to the next day’s list. At this point, I’m about 30 years behind. First orders of business tomorrow: blow up Star Wars toys with firecrackers and steal $20 from my dad’s wallet. MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW THAT...I have no sense of smell— which, ironically, kind of stinks. IF I WEREN’T AN ACTOR, I WOULD’VE ENDED UP...having to pay for more of my haircuts. I CAN’T HELP IT, BUT...I can only bring myself to update my phone’s operating system when other people are able to use emojis that I don’t have access to. MY PROUDEST MOMENT WAS... cutting my son’s umbilical cord. The scissors were designed for right-handers and I’m a lefty, but I didn’t freak out and make a scene. I thought that was pretty cool of me. —AS TOLD TO Z.D.

“A STITCH IN TIME”: COURTESY OF THE MAGIC YARN PROJECT. “MONUMENT MAN”: @PAPERBOYO. THE EASTON HOME: MATT ROURKE/AP. COOKWARE: COURTESY OF CORBÉ. RACE: THIBAULT GRABHERR/FOCUS FEATURES. SUDEIKIS: LESLIE HASSLER/CONTOUR BY GETTY IMAGES.

The actor and SNL alum— who stars in the romantic comedy Tumbledown (as well as Race; see “For the Record,” left), out February 12—fills in a few fun blanks.


AT&T

28 DAYS That moment when one African American woman revolutionized the social network. Well before status updates and posts, her research at Bell Labs led to the invention of caller ID and call-waiting. Join AT&T Twenty-Eight Days to discover the woman behind this moment, plus more

Moments That Matter, at att.com/28days.

Š2016 AT&T Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. AT&T, Globe logo and Mobilizing Your World and other marks are trademarks of AT&T Intellectual Property. All other marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.


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ACTIVE IN STYLE Activewear should be comfortable, but that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice style. Vionic’s line of active footwear provides superior support and on-trend design so you can move in comfort all day long. Check out these styling tips from O’s Merchandising Director Ashley O’Brien to achieve the perfect active look!

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Pair these with a basic running pant and an active top in a solid color and let your shoes do the talking.

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An active life calls for versatile, functional style. And there’s no shortage of shoes that look the part. But Vionic does more than that. It fits your foot’s natural contours, cradling your arches, relieving common heel pain and promoting natural alignment. In other words, it’s everyday style that gives you support from the ground up. Available at: Nordstrom and QVC.com. Visit VIONICSHOES.COM to access your free ZenFitness30 Method: a guide to walking, wellness and more.


YOUR BEST

Life

WOMEN WHO MAKE BEAUTIFUL THINGS

PAPER SHAPER

Give Bovey Lee an X-Acto knife, and she’ll give you a work of art. FOR BOVEY LEE, the X-Acto is mightier than the sword. On any given day, the 46-yearold artist spends up to seven hours in her Los Angeles studio, using her trusty blade to carve out detailed vignettes— ballerinas pirouetting on bamboo grass, a seamstress stooped over a sewing machine, a swirling cityscape dotted with people and skyscrapers—each wrought from a single sheet of white paper. “I feel so alive when I’m cutting into the paper,” says Lee, whose elaborate scenes have been shown in museums and galleries from Shanghai to Zurich. Lee made her first cut ten years ago. “I’d been working in digital media for nearly a

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decade, but I missed making things with my hands,” says the Hong Kong native, who studied calligraphy as a child and holds master’s degrees in painting and computer graphics. “Using a computer and mouse isn’t as intimate an experience.” In 2004, she traveled home to visit her father, a fellow art lover, and happened upon his assortment of traditional Chinese paper cuttings: small works depicting opera masks and zodiac animals in bright colors like red, blue, green, and fuchsia. Smitten, Lee returned home with the collection and spent a year researching the craft before getting to work. While Lee’s technique ultimately relies on her meticulous incisions, she begins by

Lee carves into a new piece inspired by her move from Pittsburgh to Los Angeles. Right, from top: Paper cuttings of a modernized Chinese vase (2012), a briefcase that contains a summer getaway (2012), and a power plant inspired in part by an earthquake in China (2008).

creating a digital template of her design, which she then prints and places over a sheet of Chinese rice paper. (“It’s the first material I used as a kid,” she says. “It’s like working with a childhood friend.”) With the template in place, she begins the precise cutting process, which leaves no room for error. “I once spent 60 hours crafting a piece,” says Lee, “but cut away too much material and had to start over again!” The technique can be tedious, but Lee relishes every slice— as does her father. “He likes that my work is more conceptual than traditional cut paper,” says Lee, “which often depicts things like village life and dragons.” His only suggestion: “Consider using color.” —MELISSA GOLDBERG

LEE: JEANIE CHOI. ARTWORKS: COURTESY OF RENA BRANSTEN GALLERY.

Live


MY BEST LIFE

DANAI Gurira

The playwright and actress—who stars as Michonne in The Walking Dead, back February 14—on her dog’s former life and being the inspiration for a tattoo. Best

THEATRICAL SURPRISE

In 2011, a Chicago theater produced a stage reading of a deeply personal play I wrote called The Convert—it’s set in Zimbabwe, where I grew up, in 1896 and focuses on a 16-year-old girl who’s caught between her people’s customs and her newfound faith. I was so nervous because I wasn’t sure if American audiences would relate. But then the crowd laughed when they were supposed to and gasped at the right times. It even got a standing ovation!

Best

PLACE TO WRITE

On a plane. Writing at coffee shops works only until I have to use the bathroom—which means picking up all my stuff and lugging it with me. When I’m flying, it’s just me with a laptop and my imagination.

Best

BEST HOLIDAY

Valentine’s Day, which is also my birthday. It’s always a guarantee that someone is going to buy me dinner.

COMPANION

My rescue dog was named Pierre, but I started calling him Papi after I saw how commanding he is around bigger dogs. I sometimes imagine he was the head of a drug cartel in a former life, and I’m just his cover.

CONTOUR BY GETTY IMAGES

Best

FAN MOMENT

About three years ago, my hairstylist on The Walking Dead showed me a picture that his friend, a tattoo artist, had sent him: It was my face on a man’s calf! I was in utter shock—and even more so when I started to see different tattoos of my face popping up online. That’s when I knew my life was a little different. —AS TOLD TO JOSEPH ZAMBRANO

PHOTOGRAPH BY Maarten de Boer

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YOUR BEST

Life

CREATURE COMFORTS

SIT, STAY, HEAL

In Portland, Oregon, every dog has its (spa) day. MASSAGE THERAPIST RUBI SULLIVAN never needs to

TAKE NOTE

Above: Sullivan works on Samson, a black Labrador. Right: A relaxing session with a client named Doug da Pug.

DOGGY DIY CARE

Three easy massage techniques to try on your dog, courtesy of Rubi Sullivan. 1. “Gentle percussive taps on an area can stimulate weak muscles and help stressed dogs relax. Try doing it right over their sacrum, which is at the base of the spine between the hips, or on their chest.” 2. “There are a lot of muscle attachment sites where the neck meets the base of the skull. That’s a great area to knead—it can help loosen tight muscles.” 3. “Using your palm, slowly and firmly stroke your dog from head to tail or down each leg, going with the grain of the fur. This stroke can slough off dry skin, improve blood flow, and more.”

Making Airwaves For podcast hosts Taz Ahmed and Zahra Noorbakhsh, radio silence isn’t an option.

Noorbakhsh (left) and Ahmed record an episode of #GoodMuslimBadMuslim.

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PEPPERONI PIZZA, Ramadan, hijabs, Janet Jackson—these are just a few of the topics that Tanzila “Taz” Ahmed, an activist, and Zahra Noorbakhsh, an actor and comedian, have taken on in their sharp-tongued podcast #GoodMuslimBadMuslim, a savvy mash-up of pop culture and politics. The pair’s frankness—on sex, feminism, Islamophobia—offers a funny respite from the negative stereotypes their community often faces. “Muslims are seen as either terrorists or rebels who fell out of Islam,” says Ahmed. Her costar concurs: “There’s no space where Muslims are simply seen as good.”

Ahmed and Noorbakhsh can thank social media for their show’s genesis. After meeting in 2012, when each contributed to an anthology called Love, InshAllah, they continued conversing on Twitter, using the hashtags #GoodMuslim and #BadMuslim to try to disrupt that prickly dichotomy with a sense of humor. Says Noorbakhsh, “To some, I’m a bad Muslim because I don’t practice strictly. But that’s exactly what, to others, makes me a good Muslim. We can’t win!” Before long, their playful tête-à-tête drew loyal followers—and outgrew the 140-character limit.

Today their fans range from Muslim millennials to what Noorbakhsh calls their NPR audience: “There’s an older white population that really listens to us,” Ahmed says. Despite early criticism from conservative Muslims, the hosts are proud of their work. “We’re providing a space for a diversity of Muslim voices,” says Ahmed—and as a Shia (Noorbakhsh) and a Sunni (Ahmed), the duo come by it naturally. “Taz and I contradict each other all the time,” says Noorbakhsh. “Even we don’t have a singular voice.” —Z.D.

SULLIVAN, FROM TOP: JOANNA SOOPER, LAURINE APOLLONI OF APOLLONI VINEYARDS. NOORBAKHSH AND AHMED: SABIHA BASRAI.

ask her clients to disrobe. But otherwise, the dogs she treats have much in common with people getting a rubdown. “They respond a lot like we do,” says Sullivan, a former preschool teacher and the owner of Heal Animal Massage in Portland, Oregon. “Some will relax, stretch out, take deep breaths. Others just yawn and fall asleep.” While sessions don’t involve candles and incense, Sullivan says a melodious soundtrack can come in handy: “Soft music helps nervous dogs calm down. I like playing piano and classical music for them—and Yo-Yo Ma.” Sullivan is trained in techniques like Swedish massage and soft tissue therapy, but her regulars aren’t just pampered pups being overindulged. Most of them have osteoarthritis or joint inflammation, or are recovering from surgery. For senior pooches, the psychological rewards can outweigh the physical ones. Says Sullivan: “I worked with an older long-haired collie named Quincy, who had painful arthritis, for more than a year. The massage was great for his sticky joints, but the mental stimulation really perked him up.” Through her clients and volunteer work at shelters, Sullivan has helped care for at least 500 canines. But a special pair of pups stand out. “Sacha is my three-legged dog, mostly German shepherd, from the Galápagos Islands, and Thor is a 12-year-old Great Pyrenees I adopted ten years ago,” she says. “They’re not spoiled, but they definitely demand hands-on attention—and I’m happy to oblige!” —JUNO D eMELO


Live

YOU DO WHAT?!

TRAILBLAZER

Hue Detective Meet the scientist who’s broadening America’s beauty counter options.

ATIS AND FOUNDATION: COURTESY OF L’ORÉAL USA. ALI AND TINA Mc CROSKY: VANESSA DUIVENVOORDE-JOB. FLOAT: SEAN AMBROSE.

GROWING UP in New Jersey as a first-

generation Haitian American, Balanda Atis learned that not all makeup is created equal. While she discovered burgundy lipstick went well with her complexion, finding a foundation wasn’t so much fun: “Either it looked ashy or the color was all wrong,” says Atis, 43. “At times, it looked like I’d put baby powder on my face. Nothing matched my deeper skin tone.” Atis grew up to be a cosmetic chemist—she’s worked at L’Oréal for 17 years—and in 2006, she embarked on a new project: reformulating foundation for women of color. Over the next seven years, in the quest to develop shades and textures suitable for darker complexions, Atis and her colleagues took skin-tone measurements from more than 1,000 women representing 57 countries. Ultimately, the team helped L’Oréal launch more than 30 new shades (below). The special sauce: ultramarine blue. “When it’s added to the traditional mix of white, red, yellow, and black,” Atis says, “foundations can look more radiant.” Of course, makeup isn’t the only way to light up a face. “I’ve gone to my 10-year-old daughter’s school to talk to girls about my job,” Atis says. “And seeing their joy and interest pushes me to look toward the next big thing. On those days, I’m the cool mom.” —ELYSE MOODY

YOUR BEST

Life

PROP Masters Shopping around for a 14-foot parrot? We know just the mother-daughter duo to call. Tina McCrosky, 48, and Ali McCrosky, 27, work at Kern Studios, the go-to float builder in New Orleans for 83 years. We wanted to know more....

ON CRAFTING THEIR CAREERS

Tina McCrosky: “When our family moved to New Orleans in 1993, we took a tour of Kern Studios, which builds about 70 percent of the floats that travel through Mardi Gras. Two years later, I saw that the studio was hiring and applied. My painting portfolio basically consisted of handmade Halloween decorations, but I got the job! I would bring my daughter, Ali, to the prop shop with me, and she started working there part-time in high school. I never thought it’d be her career, too.” Ali McCrosky: “I actually thought I’d be a forensic anthropologist in the FBI. But I started working at Kern full-time nearly six years ago—and I have no plans to leave!”

ON MAKING MARDI GRAS MAGIC Ali: “We help sculpt and paint items on the floats. Each prop, from a nine-foot statue of

Ali and Tina with an 11-foot-long dragon they sculpted and painted. Above left: A finished Mardi Gras float built by Kern Studios.

Gene Simmons to a caricature of Hillary Clinton, is crafted from four-inch-thick Styrofoam sheets. I use a kitchen knife to carve embellishments—mermaid scales, a swan’s beak—and I smooth things out with a horse comb and sandpaper.” Tina: “Then, once it’s covered in a layer of papier-mâché, I prime the piece with white paint and draw the general design. I add basic color first, before creating details and shading. If I’m working on a figure with eyes, I highlight the pupils last. That’s what brings the prop to life.”

ON CARNIVAL CHAOS

Ali: “The parades begin in January, but it takes about

a year to prep the floats for Mardi Gras—there are more than 400! On the parade route, I trail the floats with an emergency kit—a screw gun, batteries, paint, duct tape, that sort of thing. I need to be able to make any repairs, from touching up a prop to reattaching flowers that the audience pulled off.”

ON OCCUPATIONAL HAZARDS

Ali: “The Kern Studios building houses up to 750 props, so it doubles as a popular tourist destination. Every half hour or so, a tour with anywhere from 20 to 50 people comes by. It can be distracting—especially when someone says, ‘You missed a spot!’ ” —AS TOLD TO M.G.

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Life

THE WORLD ACCORDING TO

Gayle

O’s editor at large shares what she’s loving this month.

TAKE THE NAME... of this Austin, Texas, restaurant at face value. Odd Duck is known for mismatched food pairings. Exhibit A: grilled shrimp with sweet potato curry, apple, and Thai chili (above; go to oprah.com/gaylesrecipes for the recipe). The shrimp is delicious with the added layer of flavor, but the real surprise is that it’s Weight Watchers points–friendly. Getting a table at Odd Duck isn’t easy, but tell them Gayle sent you!

HOW MANY TIMES HAVE... you had to empty your whole purse to find your keys? That was me until I discovered Finders Key Purse. Pick a design (like the heart, above), add your keys to the ring of the clip, then hook the whole thing to the rim of your bag. Voilà! ($7; isntthisclever.com) Follow Gayle on Twitter and Instagram @gayleking.

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I’VE BEEN WEARING... glasses since the sixth grade, when I was hit by a truck (true story). It wasn’t love at first sight, considering my original pair was cat-eye shaped. If only GX by Gwen Stefani had existed back then. Her specs are affordable and cool, and there’s not a feline frame in the collection—so I put in an order for five. ($149; tura.com for locations) EVEN IF YOU DON’T KNOW HOW TO HOLD A FOOTBALL... (confession: I needed instructions for this pic), it’ll be hard to resist Super Bowl 50 hoopla, from Coldplay’s halftime show to the hopefully nail-biting game. Fingers crossed I get invited to a party February 7 to watch the action on CBS.

Love. Without it, life has little meaning. It’s the best thing we have to give and the most valuable thing we receive. It’s worthy of all the hullabaloo.” —CHERYL STRAYED Cheryl’s book (right) is a compilation of her observations on topics ranging from promiscuity to parenting.

BOY, CHERYL REALLY... nailed how I feel about love. And haven’t we all had our share of hullabaloo? Whether or not you’re planning a romantic Valentine’s Day, remember that love is essential.

THE ROCKET MAN... returns to his musical roots on his 33rd album, Wonderful Crazy Night (also a perfect description of the four Elton John concerts I’ve been to). There’s nothing better than his classic piano sounds on the soonto-be fan favorite “Looking Up.” Throw Elton’s longtime collaborator Bernie Taupin into the mix, and I know I’ll be downloading the whole album come February 5.

KING: COURTESY OF GAYLE KING. FRAMES: COURTESY OF COMPANY. STEFANI: YU TSAI. JOHN: RICK KERN/ WIREIMAGE/GETTY IMAGES. STRAYED: JONI KABANA. BRAVE ENOUGH: COURTESY OF PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE. KEY HOOK: COURTESY OF FINDERS KEY PURSE (2). SHRIMP WITH SWEET POTATO CURRY: RICHARD CASTEEL.

Couples celebrate their 50th anniversary with gold, so why not the NFL? They’ve created a golden football to mark the occasion.


A Coup in Cleansing

How a little bottle of water

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t used to be there were two ways to cleanse your skin. Some cleansers can leave the skin taut and dry, while oil-based removers left it slick and greasy. Ladies, there’s a different way to cleanse your face. You’ve heard people talking about it, and this time it’s fine to go ahead and believe the buzz. Micellar (pronounced MYsell-er) water is exactly what it sounds like: purified water

combined with micelles, or teeny-tiny molecules that surround impurities and lift them away. These micelles work like magnets to surround debris and draw it away from the complexion, leaving skin perfectly clean and refreshed, not oily or overly dry. Did we mention that Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water is incredibly easy to use? Gone are the days of splishing, splashing and scrubbing to wash your

face at night. Instead, soak a cotton pad with the liquid, then press on your face to activate the micelles to do their thing. Then wipe away— and go on your way! There’s no need to rinse or rub harshly. (Need proof? Just NOW YOU check the pad to see all the KNOW! gunk that’s now gone.) No matter your skin type, your MICELLAR WATER has been a cult product for professional face is clean and refreshed, makeup artists working backstage without any soap or water in at shows for decades. Its versatility on every skin type and simplicity of sight. That’s the kind of hype use—no rinsing! no harsh rubbing! we can get behind. —have made it a go-to across the globe.

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May We Help You? E X PE R T A DV IC E , I N S IG H T, R E A L LY S M A R T MOV E S

The Venting Cure

Yes, your situation is infuriating. And yes, complaining bitterly can make you feel better—but only up to a point, says Martha Beck.

O

H , T H E J OY O F collective bitching! How sweet it is to speak the unspeakable truth about the stupidity of your boss, the tedium of your daily chores, the intolerable passive aggression of your in-laws! Until you start to feel a tad sick—much like you might after, say, polishing off a package of cookies. Maybe you’ve had the creeping feeling that frequent venting, like smacking your foot with a hammer, may not be an optimal health choice in the long term. Sure, it’s cathartic, but can it also hurt you? Is it equally useful in all contexts? Does it help us solve problems, or merely entrench them more deeply in our minds, and, therefore, our lives? The very word vent hints at the answers. We also call it blowing off steam because we know venting is the metaphorical equivalent of controlling the pressure in a steam engine. Negative emotions give us energy to act—there’s nothing like intolerability to light ILLUSTRATIONS BY Mouni Feddag

FEBRUARY 2016

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May We Help You? a fire under one’s feet—but too much of that negative energy, contained too tightly, causes explosions in people and machines alike. (For example, if parents couldn’t vent their feelings about colicky infants, exhausting toddlers, or obnoxious teenagers, no human child would ever survive long enough to see adulthood.) So venting is useful and necessary. It’s also easy to misuse. Many of us, fearing we’ll explode, err on the side of venting excessively, releasing so much pressure we can’t move forward as powerfully as we otherwise could. Vent too much of your frustration, and you may never invent a brilliant solution to a practical problem or challenge social injustice. Vent all your passion, and you may never write the book that’s inside you or pursue the love of your life. Fortunately, it’s fairly easy to tell whether you’re venting too much, too little, or just enough. Most often we know we’re not venting enough when we’re keeping secrets— for example, swallowing anger at a loved one, hiding misbehavior (your own or someone else’s), or feeling too ashamed to talk about failure or disappointment. Refusing to share such intense emotional issues leads to shallow interactions that leave us feeling unseen or misunderstood. If you feel isolated because you’re hiding something you consider unpleasant or embarrassing, you must vent. Talk to the person or people you trust most. If it doesn’t feel right or safe to vent with loved ones, find a therapist, a support group, or a hotline. You’ll be amazed by how much better you’ll feel once you have a safe place to let out your internal pressure and pain. On the flip side, you’ll know you’re venting too much when you complain about a situation constantly without ever actually changing your behavior. You tell everyone from your coworkers to your dentist how much you despise your neighbor, but go on attending her dinner parties with a smile on your face and murder in your heart. You plod along at your thankless job all day every day, then moan about it all evening, every evening. You participate graciously in family gatherings even as you mentally note your relatives’ outrageous dysfunction, the better to vent afterward with your

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Venting is useful and necessary. It’s also easy to misuse. friends. Just like you did last week. This amount of venting leaves you stranded in the very places you most dislike, and over time it creates a sense of powerlessness that fuels even more venting. You can see where this is headed. It’s in this situation that venting can become truly toxic, even dangerous, like an exhaust pipe pumping fumes back into a car. We all know people who endlessly bemoan their own helplessness. That sort of venting feels so noxious that almost everyone backs away from it. If you vent like a victim of circumstance—even if you happen to truly be a victim of circumstance—it’s imperative that you stop now and instead act on the very information you’ve been sharing (and sharing, and sharing) with others. The fix for excessive venting is something I call confronting the duck. In the movie

Julie & Julia, a young amateur chef sets out to make every recipe in Julia Child’s classic Mastering the Art of French Cooking. One of the most daunting recipes requires boning a duck, and the heroine puts it off until, finally, she draws courage from Julia’s words: “You may think that boning a duck is an impossible feat.... Don’t be afraid. Take your knife; confront the duck.” Your “duck” is any situation that makes you vent, and vent, and vent. Confronting the duck means using all that energy to push yourself through your fear and start acting for positive change. If you’ve been venting about something you want to do, it’s time to actually do it. If you’ve been venting about an unfair system, I want you to stand up for justice. If someone’s driving you crazy, you need to grab the wheel and drive yourself back to sanity.


CHRIS ECKERT/STUDIO D

Of course, most people don’t know how to confront a duck effectively. If they stop venting, they may go straight to an angry, fearbased explosion rather than to skillful action. Yet, done well, confrontation is calm, civilized, often gentle—though never weak or martyred. Here’s my favorite method, one I’ve used to confront more ducks than I can count. Get some paper and start by writing “Here’s what’s really bothering me.” Then vent like a steamship having its gaskets cleaned. Pour everything onto the page—your anger, your disapproval, your venom and spite. Include details about your adversary’s intellectual failings and personal hygiene. If you don’t hold back, this pen-and-paper ventfest should let off enough steam to help you think more calmly. Now you’re in a position to plan your duck confrontation in more detail. Get a new piece of paper. First, write down exactly what’s bothering you—not vague complaints like “You never pay attention to me!” but clear specifics like “When I’m talking, you’re always looking at your phone.” List as many specific complaints as you can. Next, write how these troublesome things affect you. Instead of the wild insults from your initial rant, simply describe the way you feel and react in the problematic situation. For example, instead of “You’re ruining my life!” you might write “I’ve been so preoccupied by this that I spend a lot of time feeling angry and unhappy.” Don’t cast blame, just describe what’s happening. Third, write down exactly what must change for you to feel better—the precise amount of the raise you’d need to feel fairly compensated, the way you’d like to be spoken to, and so on. Finally, write down exactly what the consequence will be if the change you want or need doesn’t occur. Again, this isn’t a punitive measure. It’s more like saying, “I need to drink liquid every day or I’ll die of dehydration.” Not a threat, not a complaint. Just a simple, factual statement. Now it’s time to confront your duck. Arrange for a conversation with the person or group you’re hoping you will change. Make an appointment with your supervisor. Meet your sister for coffee and conversation. Rent a bullhorn and instigate a picket line if you have to. This will be scary—if it

weren’t, you’d have done it long ago instead of venting so much. To get yourself through the fear, close the vents. Draw on the full power of your frustration, your outrage, your convictions. Because you’ve clarified exactly what you want and what you’ll do if you don’t get it, you can afford to communicate peacefully, without panicky defensiveness. For example, screaming “You’re a junkie, Bob, and I can’t take this anymore!” is far less powerful than quietly reading a classic intervention letter: “Bob, I can’t go on watching you take drugs. It’s affected my life because we no longer share positive experiences, and I’m afraid you’ll either die or end up in prison. Unless you go to rehab, I won’t interact with you anymore.” Yelling at a teenager about homework isn’t as effective as explaining: “When you don’t do your homework, I worry about your future. I can’t force you to do this stuff, but if you don’t, I can’t protect you from the consequences.” This kind of confrontation doesn’t need to be violent because it carries the weight of truth. You mean business. All that energy you once vented is now contained in constructive action. You won’t always get what you want. Sometimes you’ll get the emphatic closure that comes from realizing another person or system is insane. But sometimes you’ll be heard, understood, and respected by people who will take your feedback and use it. Even if nothing changes, you’ll be left with more inner peace because at the very least you will have acted instead of having merely talked about acting. Use venting correctly, and you’ll begin to sense how powerful you really are. You’ll share enough that you can be supported. You won’t share so much that you feel poisoned. You’ll know how to capture the wisdom in a venting session and figure out real solutions to your problems. You’ll steam onward into a bolder, braver version of yourself—full speed ahead.

Martha Beck’s latest book is The Martha Beck Collection: Essays for Creating Your Right Life, Volume One (Martha Beck Inc.).

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May We Help You?

Suze Orman

For Love and Money

ORMAN: SEAN LEE DAVIES. FASHION STYLIST AND HAIR: KIM ROBINSON. MAKEUP: ALICE SO AT KIMROBINSON.COM.

How to make sure finances don’t turn your sweet thing sour.

Money can’t buy you love, but it sure can put your warm and fuzzy feelings to the test. Nearly a third of American couples report that money is a major stressor in their relationship, and money arguments are the strongest predictor of divorce, regardless of income. Whether you have a newfound love or a longtime partner, I guarantee that creating a harmonious approach to saving, spending, and investing will help keep your relationship strong.

Silence Isn’t Golden

65%

of happy couples discuss money at least once a week

Suze Orman’s latest book is The Money Class: How to Stand in Your Truth and Create the Future You Deserve (Spiegel & Grau).

$ $ Talk the Talk

The challenge is to broach the subject of finances in a constructive, supportive way. NO SHAME, NO BL AME.

You both must come to the conversation with an intent to seek common ground. Nobody is onehundred-percent right or wrong. LISTEN. REALLY LISTEN.

In my opinion, that’s a true manifestation of love. I am not suggesting you must ultimately agree with what your partner is saying, but if you don’t learn how and why he or she thinks (and spends) a certain way, you can’t expect to understand each other. RESPECT THE EMOTIONS.

No matter how much wealth we have, we all have money baggage. When I was a financial planner, figuring out asset allocation strategies and nailing down insurance was the easy part. The tough part was getting to the emotional underpinning of my clients’ approach to money. Yet only when they faced those emotional truths could they start to build lasting security. Appreciate the emotional factors driving your partner, and vow to bring an empathetic, not judgmental, tone to your discussions.

New Love? Know the Score

Of course, a bad credit score doesn’t spell doom. It should, however, spark conversation. Does For years I’ve been advising your love have a complete disregard new couples to share their FICO for responsible spending? Or credit scores early on—a suggestion often met with groans did he or she have a financial crisis due to a layoff, illness, or even and eye rolls at how utterly unromantic I am. But credit scores a steep learning curve (about, say, how student loan repayment provide valuable insights into how a relationship might play out. works after college)? A person who has learned from past struggles New research has found that the higher your score, the likelier you and is working to regain solid financial footing is to be admired. are to form a committed union.

My Rule of Three

I’m a big believer in a three-part system for controlling your money in a way that benefits both of you. Here’s how it works: MINE: I wish all of us credit card or two. Pay accounts are how you enduring love. But in the month-to-month keep the peace. the event that you and household expenses You must respect that your partner someday from the joint checking each of you is free go your separate account, and put all to spend (or save) your ways, having your own household spending individual stash financial identity on the joint card. however you please. is crucial. You should Once those bills are have your own paid each month, checking account and and assuming all your at least one credit savings and investing card in your name only. accounts have been funded through YOURS: Same goes for automatic deposits, your significant other. divide any money left OURS: You also need over and send it a joint checking to your individual account, a joint savings checking accounts. account, and a joint Those separate

Just Moving In Together?

If you’re not ready for a lifelong union, here’s how to split household costs: STEP 1:

STEP 2:

Add up your Calculate each combined monthly person’s monthly take-home pay. take-home pay as a percentage of the combined total.

STEP 3: The

percentages in step 2 are the respective percentages of household costs each of you should cover.

FEBRUARY 2016

EX AMPLE: You make $5,000 a

month. Your partner makes $3,500. Your combined income is $8,500. Your share of that is 59 percent ($5,000 ÷ $8,500), so you should cover about 60 percent of the shared household expenses. @OPRAHMAGAZINE

43


May We Help You?

Dear Lisa Dr. No, Putting an End to Snark, and Doing vs. Dreaming

Dear Mara, I suspect Ben is letting fear cloud his good judgment—which, given the early loss of his parents, is both completely understandable and totally unacceptable. I usually look for the humor in a situation, but given that I’ve lost two wonderful friends to cancer that could have been cured had they only gotten help early on, I guess I’m fresh out of funny. Do not nag. Do not plead. Do not joke. Simply find Ben a good doctor and schedule an appointment. When the time comes, calmly announce that the two of you will be getting him a checkup. Make it clear that there’s no reason to argue, as not going is not an option. Explain that whether or not he wants to go isn’t even relevant. Because it’s not about what Ben wants, it’s about what his family needs. This man chose to have a wife and two kids; he therefore has a responsibility—no, strike that, he has an obligation—to take care of himself, if not for him, then for you. My mom used to buy me a postcheckup Barbie. I bet you can come up with something even better for Ben.

Dear Lisa, What do you do about people who check their phone while standing right in front of the escalator, the revolving door, the crowded train exit, completely unaware of everyone trying to get around them? I’m just fed up! —VI RGI N I A , NEW J ERS EY 44

OPRAH.COM

FEBRUARY 2016

Dearest Ginny (yep, I feel so close to you at the moment that I’m giving you a nickname), I believe the path blockers can be divided into two categories. The first consists of some silly me-monkey narcissists who are constantly taking selfies as we mere mortals attempt to squeeze by. It’s not that they don’t realize you’re there, it’s more that they don’t care. We call these people Kardashians. The other, and perhaps more common, group is the Space Cadets. They are not intentionally rude, just utterly oblivious to their environment...which generally consists of many, many people who’d be more than happy to Taser them if it meant they’d writhe two feet to the left. Regardless of which type you’re dealing with, the way to approach a path blocker can best be summed up in one word: civility. When someone is being inconsiderate, you must take the high road, because the momentary thrill of expressing your irritation isn’t worth the corrosive toll a snarky remark ultimately takes on your soul. You see, Virginia, winter has us in its grip. People are overscheduled and underslept. They’ve bought the wrong light bulbs and can’t find the stupid receipt they need to return them. Their dog is throwing up; they’ve just been told that their daughter is supposed to wear a navy blue skirt for tomorrow’s school play; they forgot to DVR Madam Secretary; and they’ve insulted the Kardashians just three paragraphs prior to calling for a moratorium on snark.

We mustn’t add any more psychic pollution to the atmosphere. Rather than assuming that the person blocking your path has a staggering sense of entitlement, try supposing she’s had a crummy day, too. As kindly as possible, ask her to scooch over a bit; then go home, offer free light bulbs to your neighbor and boiled chicken to your dog, explain to your child that someday she can tell her therapist all about the time her mother forced her to wear a black skirt in the school play, and see whether you can get Madam Secretary on-demand.

Dear Lisa, I feel like all I do is spin my wheels. I can never seem to get my dreams off the ground. Any advice? —RAC H EL , TAMPA Very Dear Rachel, If all we ever did was dream, the world would be made up of Batmans and ballerinas— it’s time to stop spinning and start doing. Here’s the plan: Every Sunday afternoon, sit down with your notebook and come up with two concrete steps that you can take each day from Monday through Saturday to bring yourself closer to the future you want. Because, Rachel, it’s not enough to merely want something. Unless you’ve inadvertently set yourself on fire or eaten a bad clam, it’s imperative that you hold yourself accountable. Don’t go to bed without being able to cross off the day’s two objectives, and eventually those baby steps in your notebook will become a leap toward your dream. Lisa Kogan is O’s writer at large and the author of Someone Will Be with You Shortly: Notes from a Perfectly Imperfect Life. To ask Lisa a question, email asklisa@hearst.com.

ILLUSTRATION BY Graham Roumieu

KOGAN: BEN GOLDSTEIN/STUDIO D. HAIR AND MAKEUP: BIRGITTE FOR LAURA MERCIER.

Dear Lisa, Ben, my 43-year-old husband, and I have been together for 11 years. We have a son, a daughter, and a good life. The problem is that in all this time, he has never once gone to the doctor. I’ve nagged, I’ve pleaded, I’ve joked. He says he’s perfectly healthy and it just isn’t necessary. But both of his parents died young. What can I do? — M A RA , P I T TSBU RGH


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May We Help You?

Dr. Oz

An Aspirin a Day? Nearly one in five Americans, including Dr. Oz, pops an aspirin regularly. Should you join the club?

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OPRAH.COM

FEBRUARY 2016

What’s your risk of developing heart disease in the next ten years? The

U.S. Preventive Services Task Force review found that the benefits of aspirin outweigh the dangers of internal bleeding only for people whose ten-year likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease is 10 percent or higher. You can estimate your risk with the ASCVD Risk Estimator, a smartphone app from the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association, though your doctor should ultimately make the call.

Do you have a history of gastrointestinal bleeding or trouble with blood clotting? If the answer is yes,

you may want to pass on a daily aspirin to avoid increasing your chances of internal bleeding and ulcers. In fact, one study found that for every 133 women taking aspirin every other day, one would suffer a major bleeding episode (requiring hospitalization), and one out of 29 would have milder bleeding or ulcers. If you already suffer from clotting issues, aspirin could be dangerous.

Are you interested in aspirin only for the cancer benefits? The Harvard scientist

who led the study linking aspirin and lowered cancer risk has pointed out that while the findings are compelling, reduced probability of certain cancers is an extra benefit but should not be the primary reason for taking aspirin regularly. Until more is known, don’t pop the pill without talking to your doctor first—even if cancer runs in your family.

Have you been protecting yourself from heart disease in other ways?

If your doctor does decide that a daily low-dose aspirin is a smart move for you, remember: Aspirin is not a foolproof defense against heart attack or stroke. You should still exercise regularly, maintain a healthy diet and weight, and refrain from smoking. It’s also important to recognize that you’re in this for the long haul. The preventive benefits of aspirin on heart disease may take up to five years to have an effect, so don’t skimp on pill-free habits that can also help in the short term. Mehmet Oz, MD, is the host of The Dr. Oz Show (weekdays; check local listings).

Q: SHOULD I HAVE MY HEART SCANNED?

A recent study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology is getting a lot of attention for suggesting that many people taking cholesterol-lowering drugs (called statins) may not need them at all. The study found that for people with an elevated risk of heart disease but a heart scan showing no coronary calcium (an indicator of plaque—a dangerous mix of fat, cholesterol, calcium, and other substances that can accumulate in arteries), their overall risk was low enough to skip the meds. But not so fast: Heart scans don’t pick up noncalcified, soft plaque—the kind that’s more likely to rupture and trigger a heart attack. Bottom line: While a more detailed scan may prevent overmedication in the future, the results aren’t conclusive yet.

ILLUSTRATION BY Naomi Elliot

OZ: GREG KESSLER. HAIR: ANNE SAMPOGNA. MAKEUP: LINDA MELO DANZO.

ONCE JUST A handy pain reliever, aspirin has come to be seen as a powerful little pill that in some cases can reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. Now we have reason to believe it might even lower the chances of developing cancer. Recent research from Harvard revealed that long-term aspirin use was associated with a 25 percent lower risk of colorectal cancer and a 14 percent reduced risk of stomach and esophageal cancers. And in case those stats aren’t appealing enough, the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force—a medical organization that doesn’t give advice lightly— has proposed that adults ages 50 to 59 with an elevated risk of heart disease take a low-dose aspirin (81 milligrams) daily to help prevent heart attacks, strokes, and possibly colon cancer. But here’s where things get a little tricky: Aspirin is a blood thinner that increases the risk of stomach bleeding, and it has even been linked to higher risk of hemorrhagic stroke (which occurs when a blood vessel in the brain ruptures). So should you take the pill regularly or not? Answer these questions first:


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May We Help You?

THE BACKSTORY:

No Love Lost In our fourth and final installment of Iyanla’s work with O reader Noreen Sumpter (left), see how far Noreen has come as she begins to understand her family struggles in a whole new light.

LET IYANLA FIX YOUR LIFE! Is there trouble brewing with your spouse, your friends, your boss? Are you dating people who are all wrong for you? If you’re feeling stuck and need Iyanla’s help, submit your story at oprah.com/askiyanla.

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OPRAH.COM

FEBRUARY 2016

IYANLA VANZANT: Welcome back! I can’t wait to hear how you’re feeling and how the assignments went. But before we dive in, I want to return to something we spoke about last time, when you said you were completely responsible for the family’s breakdown. Are you still feeling that way? NOREEN SUMPTER: The way I’m feeling now is that I’m responsible for my reactions, for not getting the full facts about how everyone felt about where my mom should live. There was such a lack of communication that I couldn’t ILLUSTRATIONS BY Mar Hernández

SUMPTER: COURTESY OF NOREEN SUMPTER

Iyanla, Fix My Life!

Noreen Sumpter, 53, hasn’t spoken to three of her brothers since 2010, when they had an ugly dispute about where their mother should spend her final years. The fallout from the falling-out has been brutal: an epic silent treatment, with Noreen effectively cut off from half her siblings. Several months ago, eager to finally bridge the divide, she reached out to Iyanla for help. As part of their work together, Iyanla instructed her not to contact her brothers for 40 days and gave her a three-week series of “governing thoughts” to reflect on each day, plus statements to respond to in a journal. Here, Iyanla reviews some of Noreen’s answers to help her develop the awareness she’ll need if she’s going to keep working toward reconciliation with her family.


VANZANT: GARY LUPTON/STUDIO D. STYLIST: LISA MOSKO. MAKEUP: CANDICE CRAWFORD/ GREEN.BEAUTY.LIFE. DRESS, MICHAEL KORS. CARDIGAN, LAFAYETTE 148 NEW YORK.

even discuss my fears about not being heard. IV: Mmm-hmm.... We also talked about your fear of being attacked by your siblings and your quest for control. Have you begun to see that they are connected? NS: Oh, absolutely. IV: Tell me about that. NS: Well, if I’m fearful, and fear is running the show, then I have no control. So my tendency is to fight for control as a way to try to manage the fear. IV: When you didn’t get control in the fight with your brothers, what did you do? NS: I killed them off! IV: Let’s look at the governing thought for day 5: I see only the past. If we see only the past, then we’re going to respond to situations based on what we made up about the past. Which takes me back to the governing thought for day 1: I have given everything I see all the meaning it has for me. What you perceived your siblings doing and what they perceived you doing was really about who you were and what you needed in the moment. The relationship today is going to reflect all the stuff each of you made up about the past. You get that? NS: Absolutely. IV: I often say that people have a very limited emotional library. And so when they go through a vulnerable experience, they can pull only certain things from their shelves: good/bad, right/wrong, happy/sad. But what about disappointment, frustration, grief, and sorrow? What about betrayal? When we’re growing up, most of us don’t have that broader emotional library at our disposal. You told me before that your siblings made jokes about your appearance, and you felt outraged and diminished, but you didn’t have those words. Many of us come into adulthood with that same limited emotional vocabulary, and since we see only the past, we respond today how we felt back then. What do you see differently today? NS: I’m not that 5-year-old girl who cried when her siblings teased her. I am a woman who has power, and I can give words and light to my emotions. IV: But how have you healed? How have

“If we see only the past, we’re going to respond to situations based on what we made up about the past.” you healed the 5-year-old Noreen? Because feelings buried alive do not die. Even though you are 53 today, you have 48 years of not expressing yourself, or expressing yourself in inappropriate ways. So when those feelings come up, you need to call your 5-year-old self and say to her, “I got this.” It will take the edge off and will prevent you from living in the past. Remember: Your brothers’ supposed thoughts about you, and your thoughts about them, are all images you created in your mind, which may have nothing to do with who you are now. NS: It doesn’t have anything to do with who I am. And I’m not relating to them as who they are now—I’m relating to them as the past has dictated. IV: I want to jump ahead to the thought for day 13, which says My holiness envelops everything I see. If your holiness—the divine you, the highest part of you—were to reach out and envelop your brothers, what would that look like? NS: Forgiveness. I’m hopeful that one day they will be able to see me as one of them. IV: What if that doesn’t happen? NS: If it doesn’t happen, it doesn’t mean anything. IV: I want to move to day 16, which was Let

me not forget my function. What is your function? NS: I’m their sister. And I’ll always be their sister and... IV: And your function is... NS: To love them. IV: That’s right. That’s your only function. Because day 17 says Love holds no grievances. NS: Right. IV: Love holds no grievances. And it is very clear to me that despite the sadness and the disappointment and the filters of the past that cloud your vision, the love is there. NS: Oh my God, it’s so there! It’s always been there. IV: I want to encourage you to hold on to day 18: I am entitled to miracles. NS: Yes! IV: If you focus on the miracle of healing within your family, you will get that. And when you see them, they’ll look different to you, and you’ll look different to them. I think you finally understand that going in like a bulldozer to try to make peace happen won’t work. If you can continue with your journaling and your awareness, you’re going to see some pretty phenomenal changes in every area of your life, including with your siblings. Maybe not today or tomorrow, but one day soon, I think you’ll be able to make some calls with absolutely no expectations. Just be sure that no matter what happens, you do not give it meaning. NS: I hear you. IV: Well, my darling, I want to thank you for trusting me with your heart and your spirit. Thank you for your willingness to stand in the world as a demonstration of what is possible. I can only imagine the good that is going to come out of this. NS: Thank you so much. Thank you for transforming my life.

Iyanla Vanzant is the host of OWN’s Iyanla: Fix My Life and the author of Trust: Mastering the Four Essential Trusts (SmileyBooks).

FEBRUARY 2016

@OPRAHMAGAZINE

51


philosophy: hope never rests all day. all night.

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join the conversation

/philosophy

/lovephilosophy

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Quotables

Take Heart

Need a boost? These pocket-size cards, whether tucked into your wallet or displayed on your fridge, will help you tap your inner strength.

EXCERPTED BY PERMISSION OF OR ARRANGEMENT WITH: DOERR, MEMORY WALL: STORIES, © 2010 BY ANTHONY DOERR, SCRIBNER; FITZGERALD, THE SHORT STORIES OF F. SCOTT FITZGERALD: A NEW COLLECTION, © 1989 BY CHARLES SCRIBNER’S SONS, SCRIBNER; BERNSTEIN, MAY CAUSE MIRACLES: A 40-DAY GUIDEBOOK OF SUBTLE SHIFTS FOR RADICAL CHANGE AND UNLIMITED HAPPINESS, © 2013 BY GABRIELLE BERNSTEIN, HARMONY BOOKS; RICH, YOUR NATIVE LAND, YOUR LIFE, © 1986 BY ADRIENNE RICH, W.W. NORTON & COMPANY, INC., INCLUDED IN FORTHCOMING COLLECTED POEMS, OUT MARCH 2016; WINTERSON, WHY BE HAPPY WHEN YOU COULD BE NORMAL?, © 2011 BY JEANNETTE WINTERSON, GROVE/ATLANTIC, INC.

To say a person is a

HAPPY PERSON

or an unhappy person is ridiculous. We are a

My courage is faith—faith in the eternal resilience of me—that joy’ll come back, and hope and spontaneity.”

of people every hour.”

–F. Scott Fitzgerald, “The Offshore Pirate”

THOUSAND DIFFERENT KINDS

When we fulfill our function, which is to truly

love ourselves and share love with others, then true

happiness sets in.” –Gabrielle Bernstein, May Cause Miracles

–Anthony Doerr, “Memory Wall”

No person,

trying to take responsibility for her or his identity,

should have to be so alone.

There must be those among whom we can sit down and weep, and still be counted as warriors.” –Adrienne Rich, “Sources”

To me

EVERY HOUR

of the light and dark

IS A MIRACLE, Every cubic inch of space is a miracle.” –Walt Whitman, “Miracles”

THE WHOLE OF LIFE IS ABOUT ANOTHER CHANCE, AND WHILE WE ARE ALIVE, TILL THE VERY END,

THERE IS ALWAYS ANOTHER CHANCE.” –Jeanette Winterson, Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?


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The

ECIAL VA L E N T I N E ’ S DAY S P

List

A few things we think are just great!

Heal Appeal

PROP STYLIST: RENEE FLUGGE FOR HALLEY RESOURCES

“Love, love, love this shoe! Finally, a heel you can love that will actually love you back,” says Oprah. “Not only does this design from my friend Ellen DeGeneres look good, but with its great pitch, it feels comfortable enough to wear all day long.” These graceful pumps are covered in a cashmere blend and cushioned with ultraspringy insoles. (Patty pumps, $150 per pair; edbyellen.com)

PHOTOGRAPHS BY Gregor Halenda

FEBRUARY 2016

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Playing for Keeps

Whole Hearted

Well Rounded

Wave bye-bye to your old black bag and hello to a nearly-as-neutral pale pink one. All your must-haves fit perfectly in this leather cross-body covered in a subtle lasercut heart pattern. (Cossima bag, originally $79, now 20 percent off with code oprah; ninewest.com)

Hot Lips

Take a natural vegetable-wax candle, infuse it with a signature scent created by master perfumer Olivier Polge, place it in a reusable ceramic canister featuring the lithographic nose and mouth of house muse Lina Cavalieri, and you have love, Italian-style. (Fornasetti Bacio lidded candle, $175; barneys.com)

A Delicate Subject

Almost too fantastic to nibble on, these intricately carved gingerbread cookies will melt in your mouth, provided you can bring yourself to eat them. (Sentimental Heart cookies, originally $24 for six, now 20 percent off with code oprah; www.storica.ca)

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Turn your coffee table into a place of peace, love, and tic-tac-toe with this cool Lucite set. (Jonathan Adler tic-tac-toe, $125; neimanmarcus.com)

Nothing says “I’ve looked at love from both sides now” like this pendant (available in plated rose gold, yellow gold, or rhodium) featuring Swarovski crystal pavé on one side and smooth metal on the other. (Explore pendants, $125 each; swarovski.com)

Give Me a Ring

This open heart design is charming worn alone or playful when you’re decorating multiple fingers. (Enamel and Delicate heart rings, originally $225 to $255 each, now 20 percent off with code oprah; jordanaskill.com)

Sugar Rush

A gummy butterfly a day may not keep the dentist away, but it sure tastes good. And don’t even get us started on the cherry hearts and sweet-andsour lips. This is a box of happy! (Pucker Up three-piece bento box, originally $26, now 20 percent off with code oprah; sugarfina.com)

From Napa with Love

This California Cabernet is made by artisans who are passionate about finding that magical tension between flavor, depth, balance, and structure. No wonder it’s Oprah’s go-to when guests come by. (Promise 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon, $225; 707-963-6053)


To Have and to Hold

Simple, extremely useful, and engraved with sweet sentiments, these pewter boxes store everything from his cuff links to her pearl stud earrings. (Tutto è Possibile and XOXO boxes, $120 to $160 each; match1995.com)

A Cut Above

Choose between sour cherry and sweet pomegranate when getting your scrumptious on with these faceted dark chocolate rubies, handmade in the U.S.A. (in Kohler, Wisconsin, to be exact). (Sour Cherry or Pomegranate Rare Facets, originally $19 for nine pieces, now 20 percent off with code oprah; kohlerchocolates.com)

My Frame Is True

If a picture’s worth a thousand words, then highlighting a snap of your valentine in this embossed shagreen frame will say it all. (Shagreen heart frame, $245; aerin.com)

The Latest Dish

Lovely for a luncheon, beautiful for a bridal or baby shower, and terrific for a tea party, these cocktail plates are safe for the oven, microwave, dishwasher, and freezer— another reason to celebrate. (Berry & Thread Whitewash Heart cocktail plates, $98 for four; juliska.com)

Ponytail Express

Create an instant updo with this threepack of hair ties, including a quirky little lip print from Instagram’s favorite illustrator, Donald Robertson (@drawbertson). (Kisses by Emi-Jay hair ties, $6.50; emi-jay.com)

Sipping Pretty

Whether you need a hit of morning glory or a fix of afternoon delight, here’s a chance to embrace your inner barista by whipping up a luscious latte, espresso, or cappuccino while adding a pop of color to your kitchen counter. (Francis Francis X7.1 Sunrise Limited Edition in Morning Pink, originally $295, now 20 percent off with code oprah; illyusa.com)

Looking Good

Is Gayle King a glasses enthusiast or a candidate for spectacles hoarder of the year? All we know is that these readers, in shades from blush to berry, caught her eye. (Readers, originally $22 each, now 20 percent off with code oprah; peepers.com)

Knit Wit

Let your kid’s clothing do the talking with this stylish cashmere-blend sweater emblazoned with lips. (Autumn Cashmere Kids Lips tunic, $115; ronrobinson.com) FEBRUARY 2016

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Love That! A D O U B L E-DU T Y B AG , S PR I NG FA S H ION F OR E C A S T, B R A PROB L E M S S OLV E D

THE CLUTCH

The removable pouch has an interior zip pocket with slots for eight credit cards, and it’s large enough (10 by 6 inches) to hold your phone, keys, and other essentials. The clutches are also sold separately, so you can customize your bag for even more versatility.

Why It’s Worth It

It’s a tote! It’s a clutch! It’s both! Meet the DIANE VON FURSTENBERG SECRET AGENT, which cleverly disguises two bags as one. cost per use *

Ferry your daily essentials in the tote, then zip off the clutch for a night out. Whatever your mission, this bag can accomplish it.

Bag with one clutch in the same shade, Diane von Furstenberg, $498; dvf.com. Clutches, $198 each.

$498 ONE YEAR

THREE YEARS

FIVE YEARS

$1.36 PER USE

45¢ PER USE

27¢ PER USE

*Assuming you carry the clutch or the tote every day. THE TOTE The classic top-handle shape and soft, sturdy leather mean you can carry this roomy (12 by 10 by 5 inches) work-to-weekend bag forever—and fill it with everything: There are three interior compartments, including one that zips, plus three inner pockets and an exterior slot on the back. This large size, available in seven colors, comes in a variety of finishes, including one that mixes plain leather with embossed croc.

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PHOTOGRAPH BY Jeff Harris

STYLIST: ANITA SALERNO/R.J. BENNETT REPRESENTS

For details see Shop Guide.


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Love That!

ADAM’S

STYLE SHEET

You’ve got bra-blems? We’ve got solutions. No one bra does it all, so you need a variety of specialized designs. And remember: Go for professional fittings regularly.

DEEP PLUNGE

DVF SPRING 2016 RUNWAY

Wear it as a regular bra or unclasp the front to accommodate a low-cut V-neck. This style can go as much as three inches lower than a regular design.

LARGE-BUST STRAPLESS

OSCAR DE LA RENTA SPRING 2016 RUNWAY

Finally feel secure! Hidden boning and a wide band with four hooks give you extra support, while a no-slip silicone lining helps the bra stay in place—minimizing the dreaded tugging.

Le Mystère, $69; bloomingdales.com

$65; curvycouture.com

Four front hooks let you control how much you show.

Crazy for It!

UNDIES ON-DEMAND

Give your lingerie wardrobe a refresh with a visit to Undies.com. Whether you need a nude T-shirt bra or a bright, lacy brief (or a polka dot balconette or a striped string bikini...), you’ll find it on this comprehensive site, where everything is $28 or less and shipping is always free.

Comes in sizes 36C to 44H. DVF SPRING 2016 RUNWAY

ONE SHOULDER

Designed specifically as a one-shoulder bra (instead of a strapless convertible version), this underwire-free bra curves around the body to support your chest.

JASON WU SPRING 2016 RUNWAY

$38; avenue.com

DMondaine, $79; net-a-porter.com

Lace detail makes it pretty and practical.

Bras shown, $24 to $28 each; undies.com

UNDERCOVER AGENTS

Reusable silicone nipple covers look seamless under even the lightest fabrics and eliminate high-beam situations. Hollywood Fashion Secrets, $15; target.com

OPRAH.COM

FEBRUARY 2016

At Ease

Your basic T-shirt bra just got an upgrade with new features that emphasize comfort, and delicious soft fabrics that feel like a second skin.

SIDE SMOOTHING

METAL-FREE

COOLING EFFECT

High panels prevent “sleevage,” a.k.a. underarm spillage.

Silicone underwire doesn’t poke or dig.

It’s made of moisturewicking fabric.

$40; warners.com

$50; triumph.com

Hanes, $34; kohls.com

KEVIN SWEENEY/STUDIO D. STYLIST: ANITA SALERNO/R.J. BENNETT REPRESENTS. DVF AND OSCAR DE LA RENTA RUNWAYS: GETTY IMAGES (3). JASON WU RUNWAY: GIANNI PUCCI/INDIGITAL IMAGES. GLASSMAN: ROBERT TRACHTENBERG.

Reversible, so you can wear the strap on either side.

GENIUS IDEA!

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BACK SMOOTHER

Wide back wings on this plus-size style (available in 40C to 48DDD) prevent lumps and bumps.


Love That!

GREAT BUYS

UNDER $100!

16 Hot Trends for Spring

GLAM SADDLE BAG The coral color and chain detail make this purse a seasonal standout. $40; callitspring.com

RETRO POLO A fitted silhouette and a geo print give this top pop. Wear yours with a flowing or A-line skirt. $35; landsend.com

STATEMENT PUMP Whether you choose a patterned, embroidered, or otherwise embellished style, look for a stacked heel. $89; ninewest.com

OPRAH.COM

FEBRUARY 2016

BOLD STRIPES “What plaid was to fall, stripes are to spring,” says O creative director Adam Glassman. “You’ll see them in everything.” $98; anntaylor.com

ROSE QUARTZ The Pantone Color Institute has declared this blushing pink the shade of the season. Try it in a superflattering fit-and-flare dress. New York & Company, $75; nyandcompany.com

UNCONVENTIONAL SHIRTING It may be a wardrobe workhorse, but your classic cotton button-down doesn’t need to be boring. Try one in a mix of colors. $89; armaniexchange.com

RICHARD MAJCHRZAK/STUDIO D. STYLIST: GABRIEL RIVERA/R.J. BENNETT REPRESENTS.

REWORKED DENIM Rethink your idea of the jean jacket with a belted kimono style. $80; gap.com

GEOMETRIC EARRINGS These bold faceframers are the only jewelry an outfit needs. $45; rjgraziano.com

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TIE-DYED KNIT This sweater, with its carefree surferchic vibe, works well with white jeans or cigarette pants. American Eagle Outfitters, $45; ae.com

BOTANICAL PRINT Not your grandmother’s fusty florals: Pair the painterly pattern with a neutral solid. $80; thelimited.com

9 10 1112 2 1314 15 16 CHAIN-LINK JEWELRY Add both polish and edge to your outfit with some chunky hardware. $42; baublebar.com

SLEEVELESS TURTLENECK Take a page from the late ’60s and early ’70s with a ribbed knit. Green and yellow tones go well with camel and beige. $79; vincecamuto.com

GLOBAL NOMAD A maxidress feels sexy without being overly revealing. Add a belt to keep your figure from getting lost in the fabric. Dress, Mossimo, $28; target.com. Belt, White House Black Market, $68; whbm.com.

CARGO DETAILS Silky material softens the utilitarian elements of these olive trousers. Worthington, $40; jcpenney.com

DELICATE ACCENTS Eyelet, lace, laser cutting— all elevate a basic piece into something special. Rafaella, $94; belk.com

FEMININE POINTY FLATS The skimmer style is sleek, and the tweedy denim fabric keeps things from getting too prim. Audrey Brooke, $50; dsw.com

FEBRUARY 2016

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egan’s story begins years ago when her great-greatgrandmother’s family immigrated from Hungary to Pennsylvania. They were originally booked on the Titanic but her greatgrandmother’s skinned knee got them turned away by the ship’s doctor and ticketed on a later boat. That ship brought Megan’s family—and their Hungarian Christmas traditions —to America. Every Christmas Eve her great-great-grandmother would create pierogies from scratch, starting a custom that has spanned generations. Now Megan’s entire family comes together every year to create, in a labor of love, what Megan’s children have dubbed dough balls. The process of making the dough balls has evolved through the years, with mixers taking the place of wooden spoons and the men taking

over the cooking process while the women relax. But the laughter, enjoyment, and family bonding has remained the same. Once the flour has settled and the smell of fried dough fills the air, Megan’s family sits down to their Christmas Eve meal. Each year everyone swears that this year’s batch of dough balls is the best they’ve ever made, and hours pass as they share family memories, indulge in delicious pierogies, and laugh till their stomachs hurt. As Megan’s grandmother always said, “Laughter is the best digestion.” The time spent together in the kitchen has become more precious than any present under the tree, and Megan loves the thought of her kids one day regaling their own children with tales of the family’s history as they create the best dough balls yet.


Love That!

ADAM’S

STYLE SHEET HOME E D IT ION

HOT SEAT Seastone round pouf, $715; ruleofthreestudio.com

GRAB BAG Calle Bahia marble-print purse, $700; emm-kuo .myshopify.com

QUALIT Y TIME Living on Marbleized Time clock, $28; dotandbo.com

LIGHT FANTASTIC Parrish Blue fauxmarble column table lamp, $80; lampsplus.com

SHEET DREAMS Marble Sky and Marble Natural shams, starting at $55 each, and duvet covers, starting at $410 each; pineconehill.com

GET THE DISH Firenze Medici cocktail plates, $148 for four; juliska.com

Rock On GRACE NOTES Stellar Streaks personalized notecards, $20 for ten; tinyprints.com

Carve out a place in your home—and wardrobe— for the swirling sophistication of marble patterns.

ON A ROLL Ingrid and Mika Marble Block wallpaper, $98 for 32 feet; miltonandking.com

NESTING PAT TERNS Gilded Kent marbled bowls, $20 to $30 each; jaysonhome.com

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PUFF PIECE Marble Patch pillow, $189; rebeccaatwood.com

FRAME UP Absente One sunglasses, $255; gentlemonster.com

MARBLE ARCH Senso Sandy III sandal, $185; revolveclothing.com

DEVON JARVIS/STUDIO D. PROP STYLIST: ALMA MELENDEZ. CLOCK AND SANDAL: COURTESY OF COMPANIES. GLASSMAN: GREG KESSLER.

A CUT ABOVE Ceramic cutting board, $75; simplelifeistanbul.com


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O, Beautiful! S T Y L I S H S C E N T, F R AG R A NC E C OU PL E S T H E R A P Y, S PL I T-E N D F I X

LOOK WHAT WE FOUND!

PRISM REFORM

PROP STYLIST: MEGUMI EMOTO

We dare you! Embellish any outfit with a couple of spritzes of this sexy floral (Valentino Donna, $130 for 3.4 ounces; nordstrom.com)— a voluptuous bouquet of rose, bergamot, iris, and a hint of leather. Then get out there and steal someone’s heart.

PHOTOGRAPH BY Claire Benoist

FEBRUARY 2016

@OPRAHMAGAZINE

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O, Beautiful!

FRAGRANCE, A Love Story

A

He likes sexy. She likes fresh. Can this marriage be saved?

MY MACLIN (O’s executive editor) and Sasha Solodovnikov were a happy couple—but they sensed a whiff of trouble: They couldn’t agree on perfume. Which was odd, because they like the same kinds of smells in general, like the sea, cut grass, and soap. The problem is that the light, fresh notes (citrus and sheer florals) that Amy is drawn to, Sasha finds pretty…but not sexy. And the heady notes (musky and animalic) that are alluring to Sasha send Amy running for a gas mask. Their dilemma is not unusual; men

and women commonly have different responses to scents. In fact, men’s responses can be somewhat bewildering. In a study at the Smell and Taste Treatment Research Foundation in Chicago, men found the odors of black licorice and doughnut arousing, as well as the combined odors of pumpkin pie and doughnut. So we knew we faced a challenge. But, determined to keep Amy and Sasha’s love alive, we took their problem to master perfumer Francis Kurkdjian, who had a potential solution: a fragrance that starts out

light (for Amy) but then turns a little darker and sexy (for Sasha) in the drydown—the smell that lingers on your skin after the scent has evaporated a bit. Kurkdjian suggested 12 fragrances he thought might do the trick. So on a bright Monday morning in the O offices, Amy and Sasha submitted to a scent intervention. We separated them; then, Sasha patiently sniffed each of the 12 fragrances, finally deciding on five he’d want to smell on his wife. Amy sampled his picks to find at least one that appealed to her, too. There was tension—and a lot of scent—in the air....

MEET OUR LOVEBIRDS

Sasha and Amy sniffing their way toward some common scents.

ILLUSTRATION BY La Scarlatte


THE SNIFF TEST SASHA SAYS:

BOTTLES: COURTESY OF COMPANIES (4). OPPOSITE PAGE, BOTTLES: JEFFREY WESTBROOK/STUDIO D.

“It’s light.... I can barely smell it. [Holds the scent strip under his nostrils, snorts deeply, pauses] When I get a good whiff, I really like it.”

AMY SAYS:

The 12 Contenders

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis Forte bergamot, lemon, jasmine, rose, wood, musk

“Oh, I find this very heavy. And to me, heavy is not sexy.”

“Yes, I would like this citrusy, orangy smell on Amy. But the bottle is strange [narrows his eyes suspiciously].”

Viktor & Rolf BonBon tangerine, black currant, orange, orange blossom, jasmine, peach, wood, caramel

“Cute bottle—shaped like a bow! [Sniffs, then crinkles her nose] Smells like a flower arrangement that’s about to go bad.”

Issey Miyake L’Eau d’Issey City Blossom ($100 for 3 ounces; sephora.com)

“For some reason, this reminds me a little bit of a Ping-Pong ball. Which I like.”

Narciso Rodriguez for Her L’Absolu jasmine, musk, amber, sandalwood, patchouli

“Is this musky? I know musk is supposed to unleash my primal powers of attraction. [Sighs] Whatever.”

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Aqua Universalis Forte ($275 for 2.4 ounces; neimanmarcus.com)

“Subtle but also kind of complicated—crisp, sweet, flowery, a little tangy. The more I sniff it, the better it gets.”

Bobbi Brown Beach jasmine, sea spray, mandarin

“What does this make me think of? Oh, it’s baby lotion.”

“Hmm, perfect! This is a dark night full of stars. Deep and sexy. My favorite!”

Issey Miyake L’Eau d’Issey Eau de Toilette lotus, freesia, cyclamen, rose water, peony, carnation, white lily, musk

Bobbi Brown Beach ($74 for 1.7 ounces; bobbibrowncosmetics.com) Dior Escale à Portofino ($98 for 4.25 ounces; dior.com)

Issey Miyake L’Eau d’Issey Eau de Toilette ($102 for 3.4 ounces; sephora.com)

Maison Francis Kurkdjian Oud Satin Mood ($300 for 2.4 ounces; neimanmarcus.com) Narciso Rodriguez for Her Eau de Toilette ($106 for 3.3 ounces; sephora.com) Narciso Rodriguez for Her L’Absolu ($123 for 3.3 ounces; sephora.com)

“This one is so light and clean. Does that count as sexy? I would definitely wear it. Yeah, I like it a lot!”

Paloma Picasso ($90 for 3.4 ounces; macys.com) Tom Ford Neroli Portofino ($300 for 3.4 ounces; neimanmarcus.com) Viktor & Rolf BonBon ($165 for 3 ounces; saksfifthavenue.com)

THE PASSION POTION

So L’Eau d’Issey Eau de Toilette it was. “Intensely sexy,” Sasha said. “Fresh and soft,” chimed in Amy. And they found it mutually alluring. Kurkdjian was pleased, and unsurprised. “L’Eau d’Issey is bright, airy, and breezy, a true floral fragrance,” he said. “Yet, the base is complex, with woods, amber, and muskiness that give it sexiness and mystery.” In other words, just the right formula for one couple’s conjugal bliss.

Hall of Famers Can’t find a scent that pleases both you and your partner? Have fun trying to figure it out with one of these classically sultry blends.

Calvin Klein Euphoria Essence rich, fruity, and spicy ($89 for 3.4 ounces; calvinklein.com)

Elizabeth Taylor White Diamonds Night crisp, sparkling, and fruity ($68 for 3.3 ounces; macys.com)

Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb ($165 for 3.4 ounces; sephora.com)

Lancôme Trésor powdery, soft, and floral ($102 for 3.4 ounces; lancomeusa.com)

FEBRUARY 2016

YSL Black Opium warm, sweet, and gourmand ($115 for 3 ounces; yslbeautyus .com)

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O, Beautiful!

Val’s

BEAUTY BUZZ

O’s beauty director, Valerie Monroe, on what you need...and what you’ll love.

Dynamic Duo Say good morning—and good evening—to this hardworking pair. The new Clarins Multi-Active Jour and Nuit creams ($53 and $56; clarins.com) use plant extracts to help retain moisture and deliver antioxidant support, making fine lines less noticeable and leaving you looking radiant. All in two silky, elegant, fresh-smelling formulas. That’s what we call 24/7 care!

These lusciously moisturizing Burt’s Bees Lipsticks ($9; drugstores)— infused with moringa oil, raspberry seed oil, and vitamin E—also offer great color payoff, and in 14 shades, no less! I love the sophisticated satin finish (and that they’re free of parabens, phthalates, and petrolatum).

Ask Val 76

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Suddenly, mascara seems to irritate my eyes. But I’m a blonde and I need it! Help!

FEBRUARY 2016

In one of the prettiest compacts I’ve ever seen (and I’ve seen many) sits one of the prettiest eyeshadow palettes, which also happens to be surprisingly practical (YSL Couture Palette Collector in Indie Jaspe, $60; yslbeautyus.com). Go everyday subtle with a light wash of the easy-to-wear peach or pale green, or go runway bold with the sage, adding silver or gold highlights.

ONE-SENTENCE REVIEW Rita Hazan Triple Threat Split End Remedy ($30; sephora.com) If you’re crying the split-end blues these days, dry your eyes and treat yourself to this new therapy, loaded with peptides, rice proteins, and polymers to repair the hair, preserve color, and seal and smooth frazzled ends.

It isn’t uncommon to have an allergic reaction to specific fragrances or pigments in mascara, says New York City optometrist Andrea Thau. Her suggestions: Try a hypoallergenic mascara and makeup remover; apply an eye makeup primer to create a barrier between the mascara and your eyelid; and avoid blue and purple shades, as they’re made with an ingredient that’s considered allergenic. And don’t forget to remove your makeup before bed! If you have a question about makeup, skincare, or haircare, ask Val at askval@hearst.com or oprah.com/askval. Follow Val on Twitter @thisisvalmonroe.

JEFFREY WESTBROOK/STUDIO D. MONROE: GREG KESSLER.

Bee Gorgeous

Eye Style


Pretty, Singular, Evocative, Dramatic.

VERANDAÕS NEW BOOK —written by award-winning journalist and editor-in-chief The Romance of

CLINTON SMITH

Clinton Smith—presents a collection of truly exquisite flowers. Created by the world’s leading floral artists, as well as by homeowners with a flair for creativity, these unique designs will appeal to anyone with an appreciation of color, artistry, and imagination. With a foreword by Aerin Lauder. Available in hardcover wherever books are sold.


Feeling Good G U I LT-F R E E B A K I NG , S M A RT E R WAYS T O WOR K OU T, H E A RT-H E A LT H Y S WA P S

PAP SMEARS IN AISLE 5!

PROP STYLIST: MEGUMI EMOTO

You can now wait for your cholesterol, strep, and other lab results while you grab some toothpaste and mascara. But before you dump your doctor, here’s what you should know about in-store health clinics. BY Leslie Goldman

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PHOTOGRAPHS BY Claire Benoist


“There is no greater gift you can give or receive than to honor your calling.” Ñ Oprah Winfrey

From Marianne Williamson, Patti Smith, Elizabeth Gilbert, Edwidge Danticat, and more: inspiring true-life accounts of trial, error, and triumph. LittleBooksandGuides.com ON SALE NOW


Feeling Good

O

VER THE PAST YEAR, Bridget Montgomery, a 36-year-old freelance writer in Chicago, has gone to her local CVS for sinus infections, pinkeye, and a few very nasty colds. But she wasn’t shopping for over-the-counter medicine—she was visiting CVS’s MinuteClinic for treatment. “At first, there was a little voice inside my head saying, Really? The MinuteClinic?” admits Montgomery, whose only steady doctor is her ob-gyn. “But the instant I met my nurse practitioner, I felt confident. She was extremely knowledgeable and compassionate, and she took the time to listen. She prescribed an inhaler and a cough suppressant before my upper respiratory tract infection could graduate to pneumonia.” Montgomery has been so satisfied that she’s even brought in her 5-year-old son for persistent coughs and the occasional fever. “The wait at our

pediatrician’s office can be long. Then we have to see the nurse before the doctor, and with all the sick kids, the place feels like it’s swimming in germs. The MinuteClinic is a ten-minute walk from my house, and I can pick up some toilet paper while I’m there.” Montgomery is hardly the only one enticed by the convenience of the miniature doctors’ offices now nestled within drugstores and big-box giants like Target and Kroger. An escalating scarcity of doctors (the Association of American Medical Colleges estimates that the U.S. will be between 46,000 and 90,400 physicians short by 2025) plus a surging demand for fast healthcare has would-be patients heading to these clinics in droves with sore throats and mystery rashes. Consulting firm Accenture forecasts that by 2017, the number of retail clinics will surpass 2,800 (a 47 percent increase since 2014). Walgreens already has more

than 400 healthcare clinics in 22 states and Washington, D.C., and CVS, which opened its 1,000th MinuteClinic in October, has recently witnessed an average growth of four million to five million patient visits per year. Unlike most doctors’ offices, the clinics tend to be open seven days a week, including evenings. “No appointment is needed, most insurance is accepted, and for those paying cash, prices are typically 30 to 40 percent less than what would be charged by most physicians’ offices,” says Angela Patterson, chief nurse practitioner officer for CVS MinuteClinics. Various tests at Walmart Care Clinic, including those for UTIs and strep, cost $8 (plus a $59 office visit fee). Wound suturing, flu visits, and treatments for poison ivy at CVS MinuteClinic range from $79 to $99, while an average ER visit can cost $125 or more. These types of clinics offer care for

CHECKUP BEFORE CHECKOUT? Four tips to keep in mind when taking your health woes to the corner store.

If you get a Pap smear at a retail clinic, make sure they’ll phone you with the results.

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As many as 60 percent of patients who go to retail health clinics lack a primary care doc. Do you fall into this group? Ask your clinician for a referral.


nonemergency problems beyond pill counting and and are typically staffed by flu shots: Depending on the “The MinuteClinic nurse practitioners (NPs) state and the pharmacist’s ten-minute a is or physician assistants level of training (the walk from my (PAs). They can check your minimum is six years), they house, and I can thyroid levels or remove may test for strep, prescribe pick up some that pesky wart; at birth control, or dole out toilet paper while Walmart, they can even travel immunizations. I’m there.” perform a Pap smear. It should come as no And that’s actually not so surprise, however, that different from what you’d find at an some physicians’ organizations are hesitant esteemed hospital: Jamie Bakkum-Gamez, to endorse the drugstore-as-doctor concept. MD, a gynecologic oncologist and associate The American Academy of Family Physicians professor of obstetrics and gynecology at (AAFP) worries that retail health clinics may the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, lead to fragmented care. “The relationship says a sizable number of her department’s with your primary care physician is Pap smears are performed by NPs and PAs. critical—she knows the most about your “Whether it’s a pop-up clinic or a medical medical history,” says Wanda Filer, MD, a institution, a lot of preventive services are family physician in Pennsylvania and provided by someone other than a doctor.” president of AAFP. Filer recently treated a Pharmacies are also expanding their scope patient with a chronic cough who came to

Think you broke something? Skip the clinic and

head straight to the ER.

An estimated 22 percent of Americans take at least three Rx

drugs. Make sure your pharmacist knows everything you’re on.

her after receiving antibiotics from a retail clinic. Turns out, the patient didn’t have a bacterial infection—the cough was a symptom of congestive heart failure. “If she had come right to me, I would have known her other risk factors and treated her through that lens.” Some experts and doctors see the greatest potential in retail clinics as critical partners in the area of chronic disease management. “Nearly half of U.S. adults— about 117 million people—have at least one chronic health condition, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or heart disease,” says Truls Østbye, MD, PhD, professor of community and family medicine at Duke University School of Medicine. “But highquality management of the most common chronic diseases simply requires more time than primary care physicians can give.” Patterson offers an example: “Let’s say a diabetic patient comes in for her annual flu shot. We’ll have the time to ask about her meds, discuss nutrition and exercise, and test her A1C levels, which show how well a patient’s diabetes is controlled.” Retail clinic NPs will also collaborate with her doctor, says Patterson, sharing test results and helping schedule appointments. Such partnerships have been shown to work: A new study in the journal Innovations in Pharmacy reports that when roughly 15,000 patients with diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol were paired with pharmacists for medication management, one-on-one education, and regular follow-up between doctor visits, their health improved significantly. The number of diabetics who met their A1C goal increased by 25 percent; cholesterol patients saw their bad (LDL) cholesterol levels drop by an average of 16 points. And all patients’ healthcare costs decreased between 14 and 32 percent. “It makes sense,” says lead study author and pharmacist Barry Bunting. “Who better to make sure medications are being used appropriately than the people dispensing them?” While retail clinics aren’t going to put doctors out of business anytime soon—nor should they—it’s comforting to know relief may be waiting for you around the corner. FEBRUARY 2016

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Feeling Good

Have a Heart-Healthy Day

A

WOMAN DIES FROM cardiovascular disease approximately every minute in the U.S. That stat alone should be a powerful motivator to make the battle against heart disease personal. Yet often when I speak with my patients about modifying their risk factors, a telltale look appears on their faces. It says, I want to do this, but how can I possibly get from here to there? Changing lifelong habits and navigating the path to ideal heart health can

seem overwhelming. The secret: Refocus your viewpoint from the future to the present. We’re taught to dream big, but I tell women to think small. Success is the result of the many tiny—but important—steps you take each day. Think about it this way—each hour provides an opportunity to shift your choices. Over time, those changes can create incredible transformations. These tips will help you give your heart the love it deserves.

7 a.m.

7:30 a . m .

8 a.m.

RISE AND RELAX. A short morning meditation is good for the soul. A report in the American Journal of Hypertension suggests that transcendental meditation can lower systolic blood pressure by nearly 5 points. Not impressed? Research shows that lowering systolic BP by just 3 points may reduce the risk of dying from heart disease by 5 percent.

GO FOR A STRETCH. Research indicates that yoga packs a powerful punch. A 2014 review that pooled the results of nearly 40 studies revealed that regular yoga practice may lower cholesterol levels by more than 18 points.

C YOUR BREAKFAST. A 2015 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that people who consume large amounts of fruits and veggies containing vitamin C, a potent antioxidant, have a 13 percent lower risk of developing heart disease. Sip OJ or blend a smoothie with C-rich ingredients like kale, papaya, and strawberries.

3 p.m.

NOON

10 a . m .

REACH FOR ALMONDS. Nutritionally, nuts can be a mixed bag, but almonds have consistently been all-stars. A recent study found that when subjects in two groups ate identical cholesterol-lowering diets, those also given almonds (one and a half ounces) as a daily snack lowered their bad (LDL) cholesterol by 5 points more in just six weeks.

LOAD UP ON WHOLE GRAINS. We don’t have to tell you that giving up foods laden with saturated fat is good for your ticker, but what you eat in their place matters, too. Highly processed foods (like refined carbs) are no better. What is: unsaturated fats and whole grains, which have the most impact on reducing the risk of heart disease, according to a study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology.

DO THE D. A growing number of studies have labeled vitamin D deficiency a potential risk factor for cardiovascular disease. While some experts say that most adults need at least 30 nanograms of D per milliliter of blood, researchers in Salt Lake City discovered that when it comes to heart health, you should be in the safe zone if your level is above 15. (Your doctor can do a simple test to find out your number.) To make sure you’re getting enough, take a daily supplement.

6 p.m.

7 p.m.

11 p . m .

WORK UP A SWEAT. A study in Circulation revealed that when women engaged in strenuous activities (enough to break a sweat or quicken their heartbeat) two or three times per week, they were about 20 percent less likely to develop heart disease, strokes, or blood clots than those who didn’t engage in regular physical activity. Take note: Gardening and walking counted just as much as cycling and running.

GO MEDITERRANEAN. Adults who closely followed the Mediterranean diet were a whopping 47 percent less likely to develop heart disease over a ten-year period than those who didn’t adhere to the meal plan, according to a 2015 report. A classic Mediterranean dinner: fatty fish (like salmon) cooked in olive oil and topped with veggies (the more colorful, the better), plus a glass of red wine.

FIND YOUR SLEEP SWEET SPOT. Adults who rested for five or fewer hours a night had 50 percent more calcium in their coronary arteries than those who clocked seven hours, according to a recent report. But the issue isn’t just how much you sleep—it’s also how well: People who slept poorly had about 20 percent more coronary calcium than those who said they woke up rested. Sweet dreams!

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ILLUSTRATION BY Sébastien Thibault

GETTY IMAGES (9)

Simple lifestyle tweaks from cardiologist Tara Narula, MD, can help you protect your heart—morning, noon, and night.


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Keep up with the life you love. 100% whole grain Quaker Oats can help reduce cholesterol as part of a heart healthy diet.*

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*3 grams of oat soluble fiber daily as part of a low saturated fat and cholesterol diet may help reduce the risk of heart disease. Old Fashioned Oatmeal provides 2 grams. Instant Quaker Oatmeal provides 1 gram.


Feeling Good BOOST YOUR BURN

Three science-backed ways to amp up your next workout. GET BUZZED

Person First, Patient Second In a new O series, Theresa Williamson, MD, a resident physician in the department of neurosurgery at Duke University School of Medicine, shares her advice from the front lines. This month, how to ensure more personalized care.

L

ET’S BE HONEST: Hospitals often feel like factories. The minute you walk in, it’s as if you’re on a conveyer belt— intake forms to sign; doctors to meet; tests, tests, and more tests. Then maybe surgery, more tests, more meetings. You’re being wheeled from here to there so fast, it can be difficult to feel like you’re being heard. That’s why it’s important for patients to let their doctors know who they really are— their goals, fears, and hopes. Doing that in a time of crisis is hard—I know some patients who prefer to limit small talk, but letting your true self shine through can provide calm amid the frenetic pace of medical care. Recently, a patient came to my hospital’s ER with difficulty speaking and blurry vision. An MRI revealed a brain tumor. When I went to deliver the news, I fully expected the fearful looks from his family, but then he did something unexpected and said, “Please, sit down.” It transformed a sterile hospital

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setting into a family room. Research shows that when patients receive a diagnosis, they recall only a small fraction of the information. By making the conversation more personal, this patient helped form a connection, and his understanding of what to expect improved. Then there was the patient who lived near the beach and told me that after his surgery, he wanted to spend more time there. Or the first-time grandfather who made sure I saw a picture of his weeks-old granddaughter before discussing his test results. And I still remember the woman who brought her silk pajamas from home. These little details humanize an often impersonal experience. The woman in her floral-print pj’s was probably one of a dozen surgeries that day, but she reminded me that she was more than just a patient, a diagnosis. The gestures may be small, but they can help you create a more meaningful bond that allows you to simply be you—and makes us better at our jobs.

LACE UP LATER

There’s value in getting fitness out of the way first thing in the morning, but research shows that an early evening stroll may pay off even more. One small study discovered that when postmenopausal women walked at the end of the day, they lost more fat than a.m. exercisers.

FIND A NEW WORKOUT BUDDY

A canine companion may be a more effective motivator than a human gym buddy: One study found that dog owners who routinely take their pet for walks are more likely to meet the recommended exercise guideline (150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity per week). In a University of Missouri study, older adults who walked with a furry friend saw a 28 percent increase in their speed over the course of 12 weeks, while those who were accompanied by a spouse or an acquaintance increased by only 4 percent. Grab the leash and get moving. —ELYSE MOODY

ILLUSTRATION BY Sébastien Thibault

WILLIAMSON: PATRICIA WILLIAMSON

THE DOCTOR DIARIES

Dreading the gym? Have a cup (or two) of coffee before you go. A 2014 study in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that when participants consumed caffeine 90 minutes before and 30 minutes after riding a stationary bike, they found their workout more enjoyable and a little easier than when they did the same routine without the stimulant. Bonus: The caffeinated exercisers tended to consume about 170 fewer calories during their next meal.


© 2015 Wonderful Citrus LLC. All Rights Reserved. WONDERFUL, HALOS, PURE GOODNESS, and the accompanying logos and trade dress are trademarks of Wonderful Citrus LLC or its affiliates. WH14089

Yum-yum.

Tantrum.

If you donÕt have Halos, they donÕt have Halos.

Sweet, seedless, easy-to-peel Halos are grown in California with pure goodness. Your kids will love them as much as they love you—that is, unless you run out. W∂ nderful Halos. Pure Goodness.


Power Flour Does your baking routine need an upgrade?

Refined white flour—used in everything from gooey brownies to fluffy pancakes— has its drawbacks: namely, that it’s lacking in nutritional value. (In the process of making white flour, most of the original grain’s fiber and essential nutrients are stripped away.) But bland whole wheat flour isn’t your only option if you want to bake healthier— yummy alternative flours are showing up on grocery shelves everywhere. Here, six varieties to try.

FLOUR

W H AT I T I S

B A K E D - IN BE NE F I T S

H OW T O U S E I T

Brown rice

Whole rice kernels crushed to create a richly flavored flour.

Brown rice flour is packed with B vitamins (particularly B6, which keeps blood sugar stable) and manganese, a mineral that assists in brain and nerve function. It has twice as much fiber as white rice flour for the same number of calories.

Try it in muffins, biscuits, and waffles. To avoid a gritty texture, use a rice flour blend: a mix of brown rice flour, potato starch, and tapioca starch.

Flaxseed meal

Flaxseeds ground into a grainy powder. They increase the nuttiness factor of whatever they’re mixed with.

A quarter cup is rich in protein (6 grams— almost 3 more than white flour) and fiber (8 grams—7 more than white), but flax is best known for its high concentration of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Consuming the seeds ground is the best way to go, says registered dietitian Roberta Duyff, author of American Dietetic Association Complete Food and Nutrition Guide. It’s hard for the body to digest the tough outer layer of the seed.

Instead of a substitute for flour, flax—with its high oil content—is often used in recipes in place of fat, making it a perfect alternative for vegan bakers. Swap flaxseed meal for oil or shortening in a 3–1 ratio.

Banana

Because it’s made with dried unripe green bananas (before the sugars have developed), the flour tastes less like banana and more like bran.

Just ¼ cup of banana flour offers 7 percent of your daily dose of potassium, which more than 95 percent of adults don’t get enough of. Plus, green bananas are rich in resistant starch, a type of indigestible starch that ferments in the gut, possibly lowering colon cancer risk. (Cooking inactivates the flour’s resistant starch, but you can add a tablespoon to a fruit smoothie.)

This flour can easily transform your favorite chocolate chip cookies into gluten-free bites. Bananas are starchy, so use about a third less when subbing for your regular flour.

Black bean

Powdered black beans that lend an earthy flavor to recipes.

Black beans are known for being hungertaming superstars, given their high levels of fiber and protein. A quarter cup of this flour contains more than five times the fiber of all-purpose flour, plus roughly 8 grams of protein. Bonus: One serving of beans a day may lower bad (LDL) cholesterol by 5 percent, reveals a 2014 report.

Mix water with black bean flour for a puree and use it in a bean dip. Duyff also suggests it for an enchilada or lasagna filling, or as a thickener for soup. For baking (it goes particularly well in brownie recipes), replace ¼ cup of regular flour with black bean flour.

Coconut

Dried coconut meat ground into a fine powder. This grain-free alternative has an extra layer of sweetness and a tenderer texture.

While coconut flour is higher in saturated fat, with 4 to 6 grams per ¼ cup (all-purpose flour has trace amounts), it has a whopping 10 to 12 grams of fiber, so you’ll likely feel fuller on less.

Try it in pancakes and waffles. Substitute coconut flour for ¼ cup white flour. Because coconut flour absorbs extra liquid, add ¼ cup more water or milk and one additional egg for every ¼ cup of coconut flour you use.

Made from milling whole crickets—yes, crickets— into a powder. Don’t fear a “buggy” taste; the flour (you can buy it on Amazon) actually has a nuttier flavor than white flour.

You’ll get a huge protein punch. Two tablespoons rack up roughly 73 to 85 calories and contain about 12 grams of protein. Cricket Flours, for instance, has about a third of your daily iron needs and nearly 90 percent of your recommended intake of B12.

Pure cricket flour shouldn’t completely replace white flour; instead, incorporate up to 1⁄3 cup into recipes to add more protein. You can also buy “cricket baking flour” (mixes of wheat, barley, and other blends) that can be used as a 1–1 substitute for traditional flour.

—JESSICA MIGALA

Cricket

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GETTY IMAGES (6)

Feeling Good


Š Matt Dayka/Vitamin Angels

Get vitamins here. Change lives everywhere. When you buy any vitamin or supplement at Walgreens, you help provide vitamins that prevent blindness and other serious conditions for undernourished children around the world.

walgreens.com/vitaminangels


Reading Room A COU R AGEOUS COR R E SP ON DE N T, A M YST E R IOUS M A N USC R IP T, A WA N DE R I NG WA IF, A N D MOR E ...

THE MUSIC THEY HEAR

A pair of journalists explore the puzzling past and ever-changing present of a misunderstood condition.

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PARENTS SAY: One day he stopped calling me “mama.” They say: For months he had a bruise the size of an egg on his forehead because he kept banging his head on the floor. They say: I thought she was okay because she made eye contact. In the U.S., one in 68 children is born with some form of autism. Despite the current argument that people on the autism spectrum are not worse off or disabled, but different, and often gifted, autism can be terrifying for parents. Even for higher-functioning children, communication is affected, often love won’t be expressed conventionally, and relationships may be difficult, or impossible. At the profoundly impacted

end, children who require round-the-clock attention can grow into fragile, dependent adults incapable of self-care or speech. None of these families has it easy.

In a Different Key: The Story of Autism, by John Donvan and Caren Zucker (Crown), offers a full social and medical history of the disorder, replete with heroic parents, occasional villains, and decades of media storms. The book grew out of an article the authors wrote for The Atlantic on autism’s patient zero, Donald Triplett. After an early childhood beset with serious symptoms, Triplett survived institutionalization to graduate from college, work in the family bank, drive, flirt awkwardly, and adore golf. ILLUSTRATION BY Simon Pemberton


Donvan and Zucker take us beyond Triplett to well-known figures in autism’s history (Leo Kanner, Triplett’s doctor, ambitious and frequently mistaken, but also deeply caring; the activist Temple Grandin) as well as the remarkable, not-at-all-famous people who refused to give up in the face of insults (being labeled “refrigerator mothers,” blamed for causing autism due to a lack of maternal warmth), indifference, and hostile, wrongheaded policy. They examine the evolution and eventual debunking of facilitated communication and the vaccineautism link. (To repeat: There is no link at all—and never was.) This is not a how-to guide or a polemic on neurodiversity. The book probes a difficult subject with intelligence and compassion—and makes you think. The complete absence of hysteria will make it essential reading for many. And while there is no cookie-cutter solution provided, its insights and quiet wisdom demand our attention, and gratitude. —AMY BLOOM

Cabaret Redux

The vapors and fragments of Europe’s brightest, darkest city are conjured by the acclaimed author of High Cotton. IMAGINE THE SCENE: You’re

in an unfamiliar, dimly lit bar, and the room is buzzing. From every direction comes laughter, argument, and boozy, brainy talk—about politics, art, philosophy, and the meaning of the “just city.” From somewhere in the back you can faintly hear a girl singing a mournful tune you swear you recognize but can’t identify. You get the feeling the patrons all know one another but wish they didn’t. This is the mood of Darryl Pinckney’s latest novel, Black Deutschland (FSG). Jed is a gay, black dilettante who near the end of the Cold War moves from Chicago to Berlin, a city somehow at the center of the world yet cut off from it. But Jed, who labors against a personal history of failure and

WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE “CABARET REDUX” ILLUSTRATION: JULENE HARRISON. “WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE” ILLUSTRATION: MADDI MATTHEWS.

Electric and ethereal, Hunt’s latest novel wows. AN EERIE DELIGHT suffuses Samantha Hunt’s Mr. Splitfoot (HMH), a novel that is by turns a ghost story, a love story, a murder mystery, a family saga, a picaresque outlaw yarn, and a survivor’s ballad of loss and rebirth. It’s also about motherhood. And being poor in Rust Belt upstate New York. And con games that turn real in highly unexpected ways. Hunt is adept at blending the magical with grimy reality, as she did in her first two novels, The Seas, which offered a twist on “The Little Mermaid,” and The Invention of Everything

addiction, is not the typical young hero on a quest for experience and knowledge. Black Deutschland is a bildungsroman in which all is in flux: identity, sexuality, family, place—even time itself. And like Jed’s cousin Cello, a brilliant pianist whose facade of a perfect life is cracking, no one is quite who they claim to be, or aim to be. Nor are there any glib resolutions. Just “another lexicographer of desire and ruin” is what Jed calls himself at the end of the novel. But several pages earlier, on the night the Berlin Wall falls and the city for a moment seems to fulfill his hopes, Jed takes a stranger by the arm, and together they dance in moonlight beneath the Brandenburg Gate. A life and a self are many things—pain and ecstasy, both fleeting, both true. —DOTUN AKINTOYE

Else, an imagined episode in the life of electricity pioneer Nikola Tesla. Here, Hunt has no need of famous figures from which to spin her tale; her ordinary people bring more than enough enchantment. A powerful undertow of sorrow, violence, and abandonment drives the narrative with as much force as the plot, which entwines the stories of orphans Ruth and Nat, who pretend (or not?) to channel the dead, and of Ruth’s pregnant niece, Cora, en route to an unknown destination with her mysteriously mute aunt. Thieves, religious fanatics, bullies, nuns, and damaged children populate the book, never behaving as one might expect. Every sentence, every scene, and every page surprise, thanks to Hunt’s unflagging ability to make wholly original connections among people, places, things. Believe me: If you think you know where this one is going, you will find yourself to be thrillingly, deliriously wrong. —STACEY D’ERASMO

FEBRUARY 2016

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A stunning historical find is just as relevant today.

AUSTIN REED’S The Life

and the Adventures of a Haunted Convict

(Random House) was written by hand on sheaves of paper, started, perhaps, in the 1840s and completed in 1858. It then spent 150 years unread, until rarebooks dealers discovered it at an estate sale in Rochester, New York. Believing they’d stumbled across something important, in 2009 the dealers brought the manuscript to Yale, where researchers pored over it, testing the ink and paper and unearthing 19thcentury prison records, deeds, and other documents. They verified that its long-dead author was who he professes to be on the page. Reed’s story is like something out of a Charles Dickens novel, complete with deprivation, unprovoked punishment, and cruel twists of fate. It takes place

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Local Hero

After spending years in political exile, a reporter receives the world’s most prestigious literary award. THE L ATEST recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature, Svetlana Alexievich, is a journalist from the former Soviet Union who has made an art of bypassing the powerful, finding sources among everyday people—witnesses to the daily unfolding of history. When writing about the Soviet war in Afghanistan, Alexievich reached out to soldiers and their families; when investigating Chernobyl, she spoke with first responders and their loved ones. “Usually journalists are interested in information—that’s their god,” she says. “But my god is the details of ordinary human lives.” Like her countryman Alexandr Solzhenitsyn or America’s chronicler of working people, Studs Terkel, Alexievich allows her interviewees’ words to stand without commentary, “unpolished by an author’s bias or ideology.” She says when she started listening to so-called little people, she thought: “In what way are they little? I heard Shakespeare at every turn.” Alexievich has written five books, among them Voices from Chernobyl, which won a 2005 National Book Critics Circle Award. O’s books editor, Leigh Haber, dug deeper into her mission and process: HER WORK: The people I write about have been

trampled by historical events—labor camps of the Gulag and World War II, Hitler’s fascism on one hand and Stalin’s on the other. I assemble their lives bit by bit. Not statistics or official lists of facts, but how men and women loved one another, their children, old people in their lives—stories of human souls.

RAISING ONE’S VOICE: I was brought up on Russian literature, in which a poet is always more than a poet. The poet’s a citizen. For me, it was never a question of whether to speak truth to power. Of course you must. Opposition to the authorities is normal for us. A FAVORITE BOOK: Dostoevsky’s The Idiot. I fell in love

with Prince Myshkin. It’s all there—everything we are thinking about and talking about today, especially the impossibility of distinguishing between good and evil.

WHAT THE NOBEL MEANS: When it was announced,

fellow Belarusians went out into the streets of Minsk to hug and kiss, yet our dictator, President Lukashenko, found no kind words for me. He said I’d poured filth on the country—which Stalin once said of Boris Pasternak and Brezhnev of Joseph Brodsky. All these years later, tyrants haven’t changed: They even use the same vocabulary. Still, I’ll continue to do my small bit—honestly, and with joy. ILLUSTRATION BY André Bergamin

“FREE AT LAST”: HOUSE OF REFUGE, 1832, A LITHOGRAPH ATTRIBUTED TO GEORGE HAYWARD. ART AND PICTURE COLLECTION, NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY. ALEXIEVICH: ULF ANDERSEN/GETTY IMAGES.

FREE AT LAST

before the Civil War; though Reed and his family were free Northerners, his father’s death propelled them into poverty and young Reed into a state of grief and anger that landed him at age 10 in a New York City juvenile facility ironically called the House of Refuge. (It was not uncommon then for children in poor families— especially poor black families—to be removed from their home for petty crimes and institutionalized in this way or made indentured servants.) We’re there as the author is lashed with a crudely fashioned instrument he refers to as “the cats”; as he subsists for days on bread and water in a cell; as he repeatedly escapes, hiding out in sailing ships and saloons, only to be found, returned to the facility, and beaten yet again. Reed later ends up in an adult prison, where, aside from short periods of freedom, he remains until he’s released for good in his early 40s. There are many reasons this book is remarkable, not least that while Reed is brutalized regularly, he remains triumphantly defiant. Though the only formal education he received was while in the House of Refuge, he writes with a novelist’s sense of nuance and adventure—or misadventure. The memoir anticipates that the American penitentiary system would become a kind of successor to slavery’s shackles. But the book’s greatest value lies in the gap it fills: As writer and historian Edward Ball notes, “the mosaic that is the history of the common man has many missing tiles, and Reed’s book places an important piece into that mosaic.” —LEIGH HABER


Reading Room

10 Titles in

Translation

Come with us this month on an exotic literary adventure where you will encounter writers from around the world—courtesy of their English translators. Ostend

The Story of My Teeth

Sudden Death

The Vegetarian

On the Edge

by Volker Weidermann

by Valeria Luiselli

by Álvaro Enrigue

by Han Kang

by Rafael Chirbes

Carol Brown Janeway

t r a ns l at ed by

Natasha Wimmer

t r a ns l at ed by

Christina MacSweeney

Deborah Smith

Margaret Jull Costa

What good is art when the world is burning? That’s the question animating this short true-life account of two Austrian authors who spend a final summer together while fleeing the Nazi ascendancy.

The hero of this ambitious fun-house of a novel set in Mexico is Gustavo “Highway” Sánchez Sánchez, an auctioneer, journeyman, and fabulist who’s had Marilyn Monroe’s teeth implanted in his mouth. Chew on that.

The players: painter Caravaggio and poet Quevedo. The game: Renaissance tennis. The ball: made of Anne Boleyn’s hair. The stakes: Western civilization itself. The medium: a novel without boundaries.

Indebted to Kafka, this story of a South Korean woman’s radical transformation, which begins after she forsakes meat, will have you reading with your hand over your mouth in shock.

In expansive, torrential monologues, we hear the residents of a fictionalized Spanish town devastated by the great recession as they desperately clutch at the remains of a community in ruin.

The Case of Lisandra P.

Not All Bastards Are from Vienna

Love Is My Savior

by Hélène Grémillon

by Rumi

The Man Who Snapped His Fingers

t r a ns l at ed by

by Andrea Molesini

t r a ns l at ed by

by Fariba Hachtroudi

t r a ns l at ed by

Alison Anderson

BEN GOLDSTEIN/STUDIO D

For fans of Gone Girl (who isn’t?), an Argentine love triangle featuring a psychoanalyst arrested for his wife’s death and a patient trying to clear her therapist’s name.

t r a ns l at ed by

t r a ns l at ed by

Antony Shugaar and Patrick Creagh

In this debut Italian novel, a teenage boy is thrust perilously, tragically into manhood and history when his family is forced to both resist and collaborate with the enemy during World War I.

Nesreen Akhtarkhavari and Anthony A. Lee

Like John Donne’s “Holy Sonnet 14,” these works by the Persian poet Rumi— in an English edition of his rarely translated Arabic verse—sublimely blend the devotional and the erotic.

t r a ns l at ed by

The Blizzard by Vladimir Sorokin t r a ns l at ed by

t r a ns l at ed by

Jamey Gambrell

The “Theological Republic” stands in for the author’s homeland of Iran in a novel that seamlessly combines elements of a political thriller with a tale of love destroyed by circumstance.

A doctor and his ostensible guide travel to save a Russian town from plague and possibly the undead. What they encounter are diversions real and imagined as the road before them grows ever harder to discern.

Alison Anderson

—DOTUN AKINTOYE, CONSTANCE CAPONE, AND NICHOL AS VALSALEN

FEBRUARY 2016

@OPRAHMAGAZINE

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February 2016

PROP STYLIST: BRIAN BYRNE FOR SET IN ICE

Yes, life is sweet. But it can also be sad, or scary, or overwhelming—and even though everything may look perfect, no one really knows what’s going on inside us. In our special feature on mental health, you’ll meet a few brave people who’ve struggled, sought help, and made it through (page 96).... How best to care for your face? Our advice will help you tend beautifully to your most distinctive features (page 116).... And meet an extraordinary woman whose journey brought her from Africa to the United States, and whose artistry helped her find her voice (page 122)....

PHOTOGRAPH BY Sam Kaplan

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T CAN COME

on like a squall, or have plagued you since childhood. It can start gradually before gathering momentum, or make sudden landfall and leave wreckage in its wake. However it arrives, mental illness can be devastating—and support hard to come by. But as you’ll discover in this first installment of O’s three-part series on mental health, one universal truth governs all maladies of the mind: There is hope. Photographs by H U G H K R E T S H M E R Paintings by N O M O C O


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BACK TO LIFE,

BACK TO REALITY Cynthia Bond on the journey from darkness to dawn.

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FOR MORE THAN 30 YEARS, I have lived with depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). For much of that time, I didn’t know what was wrong. I had no barometer for sorrow. It was as if I’d been given a pair of eyeglasses that made the world gray, and worse, the lenses were cracked, shattered by the secret violation I’d lived through as a child. My mother’s heart ached for me, her youngest daughter. My sister sang songs of hope over the phone. My brother, a mental health professional, shared knowledge, wry jokes, a golden smile. My friends encircled me, and I was grateful. Sometimes these acts of kindness took hold, seeded in my mind, only to wither and die. I saw everything through the warped glasses—through a prism of pain. For many years I rarely slept, kept nightly vigils against my memories. Some mornings it felt like I was weighted to the bed. A deep shame descended: Why couldn’t I “buck up,” “get over it”? I watched people bounce back from breakups, recover from job loss, foreclosures, and worse. I couldn’t fix myself. I began to feel there was something wrong with my character. My spirituality confused me. I believed that God, nature, and the soul-filling music I heard in church should be able to heal me. Many nights I prayed: Surely this ache will disappear. At times it did. At times I felt held by a universal love. But then life would go slate gray and hollow again. I also faced an unlikely problem: I’m strong. My mother is a fighter, and I am my mother’s daughter. I can bear a

great deal. So many women learn to endure this way. So I held on. Ruby, a character in my novel, lived with anguish for 11 years—as did I, my hopes drifting away like milkweed in a breeze. Every step was a battle. One night I lined up sleeping pills in a perfect row, planning to take them one by one. But God, or angels, or both, held me that night, pressing against my heart and whispering not to let go of this life. It wasn’t that I wanted to leave the planet; I just wanted an end to the suffering. I confessed this to my mother and was taken to a hospital. The people there had fallen, too. One woman’s family had disowned her, blaming her for her illness. Others had lost their jobs, their homes. They were broken in ways few can fathom. Still, they had made it through those doors. They had survived. Many do not. I began, slowly, to walk the path to wellness, but soon found I had another battle to fight: Once I admitted that I was recovering from depression and PTSD, my voice became suspect. My decisions, my career, my ability to parent were questioned. It was as if the broken glasses I had removed had been taken up by others. Some never saw me the same way again. But I learned that I could use my strength for more than just survival. That my spirituality could fill me, but that I also needed professional help—and these were not mutually exclusive. That while I had resisted medication—afraid to become a victim of emotional Botox—I needed medicine like a diabetic needs insulin. That I could have feelings without being disabled by them. That I had done nothing wrong. That I had no reason for shame. Stop on any busy sidewalk. You’ll see people walking, talking, working. Nearly one-fifth of them have experienced some type of mental illness. Perhaps you’re among them. Know that none of us has to go through it alone. Know that wellness is possible. It happens one moment, one step, at a time. Among those many steps, the first is the hardest to take, and the most important. Know that help is waiting—that it will arrive the moment you inhale, let out a courageous breath, and ask. FEBRUARY 2016

“Listen to the people who love you.... Be brave; be strong; take your pills.... Reason with yourself when you have lost your reason.” —ANDREW SOLOMON, THE NOONDAY DEMON

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The 8 Steps to Inner Peace A balanced psyche doesn’t mean that every day is sunshine and rainbows. In 1943 and in subsequent updates, the seminal psychologist Abraham Maslow proposed a hierarchy of needs that must be met for a person to be “actualized”—or, as Maslow put it, “to become more and more what one is.” Here, our annotated overview of his model, which still informs our understanding of what mental wellness involves. (Start at the bottom and work your way up.)

Humans desire beauty: flowers along the highway, wallpaper that matches the throw pillows. When our baser needs are met, we can appreciate art, a sunset, Idris Elba—and create some beauty ourselves.

Transcendence

For self-actualized people, life is more joyful than painful—something worthy of awe. When a problem does arise, they will focus on ways to improve the situation, rather than complain about its unpleasantness.

Self-Actualization Aesthetic Cognitive

We long to understand the world around us; to achieve mastery of our surroundings, our career, our backhand; to be able to participate in conversations about current events, the state of our union, or the latest AMC drama.

These topmost levels are what Maslow referred to as “growth needs”: Their fulfillment only increases our motivation to continue to meet them in new and greater ways. Our bellies full, our lives brimming with love and friendship, we may begin to focus on travel (Cognitive), that epic painting project we always meant to tackle (Aesthetic), volunteering at a homeless shelter (Transcendence).

The respect of others helps us respect ourselves and bestows a sense that we are unique, endowed with particular talents and abilities. That self-esteem, in turn, inspires us to be ambitious, feel capable, take charge of our lives.

The basic biological needs—food, water, sleep, sex—must be met or we become preoccupied with them to the exclusion of all else. This is why a person in a war zone may sacrifice her personal safety to find food.

Esteem Belongingness

Safety

Physiological

When times are tough, we need to know we can turn to people close to us for love and support. If we don’t, the resulting loneliness can be a precursor of depression.

While physical safety is paramount, we also require financial and psychological security— the awareness that we can move freely through the world without fear of ruin, ostracism, or the loss of our sanity.

Maslow determined that these four base levels are “deficiency needs”—that is, when any of them goes unfulfilled, or is deficient, our health suffers. Each lower set of needs must be met before we can focus on those one level up; if at some future point one need ceases to be met, we must go back and remedy the shortfall before we can return our energy to the needs above it.

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“Children are happy because they don’t yet have a file in their minds called ‘All the Things That Could Go Wrong.’” —MARIANNE WILLIAMSON, ILLUMINATA

SET DESIGN: TRACTOR VISION. WARDROBE STYLIST: ANNA ROTH MILNER. HAIR AND MAKEUP: ROB BECKON. ILLUSTRATIONS: SILJA GÖTZ. FRAMED PAINTING ON OPENING SPREAD: GETTY IMAGES.

Maslow eventually wrote that while attaining self-actualization may fulfill us, furthering a cause beyond oneself is the highest form of personal growth.


ANOTHER WAY OF

SEEING Kyla Marshell’s visit to the intersection of illness and creativity.

I WAS A SENIOR in high school, just beginning to explore my artistic potential—writing, composing, acting, painting—when my brain splintered. I started to have bizarre thoughts: What word does God want me to choose? Which note is most holy? What will keep me from being punished by an allseeing, invisible force? I sought help, and a psychiatrist explained that I’d had a psychotic break. For months I’d believed that my everyday choices could have dramatic consequences. One misstep and the car would crash. My heart would stop. God would punish me. Though logic had not completely escaped me—I knew, even as I feared them, how unlikely these outcomes were—it took therapy and medication to return me to reality. Delusion and hallucination are debilitating facets of mental illness, yet seeing our thoughts brought uncannily to life is something we all experience:

How often have you thought of a friend, then seen her walk past? Wished to change jobs, then come across the perfect listing? After I got past the paralyzing fear of choosing the wrong word and returned to being my thoughtful, analytical self, my intuition went from being a command I’d felt I had to obey to one guiding principle among many. I began to see how magical thinking, imagination, and coincidence inflected my life. At their most extreme, these phenomena meant living in a false world. At their mildest, they were my greatest

tools as an artist. Consider metaphor— the invented relationship between disconnected things. In another context, this was delusion; now it’s the meat and bones of my writing. My view of the world, my art, has been informed by compassion for another way of seeing and by the belief that, as the poet Elizabeth Alexander wrote, “many things are true at once.” It’s true that my mind once splintered. It’s true that I put it back together. Truest of all? Through every one of the resulting cracks, there shines a brilliant light. FEBRUARY 2016

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IT’S A MAD, MAD, MAD,

MAD WORLD

Are stress and sadness the new sanity?

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ONE DAY, BACK WHEN I worked as a nurse, we were perilously understaffed. Alone for a moment, aware of six things I needed to do right then—administer medication, change a dressing, hang an IV—I began to cry. Another nurse came into the room. I apologized for my tears. She said, “I think you’re the only one responding appropriately.” I think of that often these days. Between the daily reports of fresh terrorist attacks, the signs on school doors banning guns—schools where the students come up to our hip, the food we aren’t sure is safe to eat, the planet we aren’t sure we can save, and the unfulfilling hours we spend mired in Internet quicksand, it seems the world has stepped off a cliff. So many of us already suffer from deep sorrow, wrenching nerves, dark nights (and days) of the soul. The rest of it only makes things worse. Then there are the subacute problems unique to the female sex that eat away from the inside: A new mother sits in a

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BY ELIZABETH BERG

corporate bathroom stall pumping breast milk, longing for her fuzzy-haired baby. A woman stares at a magazine model, berating her own butt or belly or nose or hair with a vitriol she would never show anyone else. As enlightened as we strive to be, it seems nearly all of us are suckers for the widespread message that what makes us really beautiful—our intelligence, compassion, sense of humor, kindness—barely matters. One wonders: Are those of us not already anxious or depressed headed that way as a result of living in this corrosive culture? And is the culture making it ever more difficult for the truly ill to heal? Maybe all of us are only behaving appropriately, getting sick when so much around us is toxic. I have a little dream that one day we will decide this is not the way to be. That we will think about how we are a species with enviable minds and hearts more good than bad. That we will realize our lives are short at the longest, and that the big gifts are the sun and moon and the love we can give to as many as will accept it. That we have the raw materials to fix this mess. Perhaps then we will live in a world that makes sense and feels good and makes us eager to get out of bed. And perhaps those who are depressed, anxious, and struggling won’t be doubly handicapped by a culture asking what’s wrong with them rather than asking that question of itself.

The Breakdown MENTAL ILLNESS IN AMERICA, BY THE NUMBERS.

Nearly one in five Americans is affected by mental illness in a given year.


55% of American adults with a mental health condition received no mental health services in the previous year, as of 2014.

15% AN ESTIMATED

OF HOMELESS PEOPLE STAYING IN SHELTERS LIVE WITH SERIOUS MENTAL ILLNESS.

African Americans and Hispanic Americans use mental health services at about half the rate of white Americans annually.

Women experience depression at roughly twice the rate of men and attempt suicide three times as often.

SUICIDE IS THE TENTHLEADING CAUSE OF DEATH IN THE U.S.

Statistics provided by the National Alliance on Mental Illness, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Screening for Mental Health.

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WHAT, ME

WO R RY ? Jessica Winter has some nerves.

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EVERYONE IS ANXIOUS; it’s just that some people are better at it than others. Some people compartmentalize, sorting their worries into various dim, cluttered cubbies of the mind. Some people achieve a kind of transubstantiation of anxiety—as blood becomes wine and flesh becomes wafer, the dread and disquiet of everyday life become morning jogs, yogic positions, meditative mantras, hypnosis via e-commerce. And some of us (and by us I mean me) bite off our nails in horizontal strips. Or chew an entire pack of sugarless gum in one sitting (me again). Whatever your strategy, just make sure to clean up the evidence—it will give you something to do with those trembling hands. My trademark move is to feel the deepest anxiety about things that are deeply good. The day I received a job offer I wanted very badly, I spent the two weeks between old and new gigs in intermittent states of teary agitation, convinced the offer would be rescinded. (Why? If you have to ask, then your mind’s cubbies are far tidier than mine.) The day I had my 20-week anatomy scan— the one at which my ob-gyn told me my growing baby was right on track—I burst into tears the moment I left the doctor’s office, convinced that there just had to be something they weren’t telling me. Because that’s the refrain, always. There has to be something wrong. To the chronically anxious, if nothing appears wrong—if everything, in fact, appears right—then that only means a terrible something is lying in wait. Just

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The Help How four anxious writers found moments of peace. “There are times when you put a bit more strain on your nerves than you’re willing to admit, like I did last year. I’d had a glorious period of reading and writing—my favorite things—but also of rejecting rest because resting felt ungrateful. When that period ended, it left me feeling strange—like air was a weight on my skin. Then one day I was on a plane and sensed there was something kindly about the lady in the seat next to mine, and that made me flinch. I suppose kindness can be scary at times, in much the same way pizza can be scary for someone on a diet. I felt extremely cold, but I held still so as not to shiver, which I somehow equated with losing control. I closed my eyes and tried to sleep. My seatmate tenderly tucked a blanket around me, with a few little pats to ensure complete coverage. The warmth of that gesture had a greater effect than the blanket itself.”

“When I was in my sophomore year of college, I developed anxiety attacks related to my final exams. What helped me most was when my dear friend Margaret pointed to a giant textbook on the floor and advised me to give it ‘a little boot.’ She was joking, but I took her advice and kicked it. I saw the absurdity of the situation. A friend who jokes with you in a time of pain can help you remember the person you were before—the strong person who you will, eventually, become again.” —KAREN E. BENDER tell me already. The anxiety that plagued me for decades, I realize now, was the loose and jagged contents of an underoccupied brain jostling around, causing swellings and contusions and antic confusion. New mothers are told, over and over again, how anxiety-provoking it is to be responsible for a tiny, helpless human being. But for me, motherhood has been an effective antianxiety training program, simply in the way its demands fill those troublesome brain spaces. I have escaped my own head and run into the chubby arms of a far more benevolent captor. How to cure a worrier? Give her something real to worry about.

—HELEN OYEYEMI

“After my daughter was born, we moved four times as we coped with job layoffs and tried to forge a life that balanced work and family. During all these upheavals, I discovered that no matter how long we stayed in a new place, I could soothe my unsettled and rootless feelings by planting a small flower garden. As each plant bloomed, I began to see the beauty—and to set down roots—in even a temporary home.” — MARGO RAB B

“LAST FALL, AFTER DECADES SPENT LARGELY HOUSEBOUND BY ILLNESS, I TOOK A CROSS-COUNTRY DRIVE TO MOVE TO OREGON. KNOWING THE ENORMOUS RISK TO MY HEALTH, I WAS TERRIFIED, SO I ASKED MY FRIENDS TO SEND QUOTES THAT WOULD GIVE ME COURAGE AND FAITH IN MYSELF. THEIR WORDS LIFTED ME AND CARRIED ME THROUGH, AND WHAT I FEARED WOULD BE AN ORDEAL BECAME A MAGICAL ADVENTURE.” —LAURA HILLENBRAND

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VICIOUS

C YC L E

Hot-flash news flash: The Change can bring more changes than you bargained for. BY SANDRA TSING LOH

W “Something is missing: That’s as close as I can come to naming the sensation, an awareness of missed or thwarted connections, or of a great hollowness left where something lovely and solid used to be.” —CAROLINE KNAPP, APPETITES

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WHILE DRIVING TO PICK UP my daughters from school one afternoon, I remembered promising them we’d have their favorite dinner: make-your-own pizza. Oh no. This would require an extra trip to the grocery store to get the ropy pizza dough, plus the murderous kitchen cleanup afterward, with the spilled flour and sticky cutting board and... And all at once life felt utterly, grimly hopeless, a thousand paper cuts of drudgery without reward or end. My mood fell down an elevator shaft. I tasted metal. I was overwhelmed with grief. For days, weeks, the pain continued. The sunlight was too bright. I would wake up with a weight on my chest. I cried for no reason. I would take a yellow pad and make hash marks (at 8 a .m., 9 a .m., 10 a .m....) to celebrate simply making it through the day. Unbeknownst to me, the darkness was an effect of perimenopause. Menopause’s lesser-known sister,

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perimenopause occurs when a woman’s periods become irregular, typically around age 47. It can play havoc on her cycle by throwing estrogen and progesterone levels out of whack, which can affect not just the body (what’s with the chin hairs?) but also parts of the brain like the hypothalamus, amygdala, and hippocampus. Since these are wired to memory, hunger, libido, and anger, one’s behavior and personality can change startlingly. More good news? Because each woman is unique as a snowflake, perimenopause can start as early as in one’s 30s and last between a few months and 15 years. At the urging of a girlfriend who’d survived this turbulent passage, I visited her “dream gynecologist.” While some—often male—doctors will see you for five minutes before prescribing pills, Dr. Valerie listened carefully as I described the hues, intensity, and timing of my depressive attacks (I wept all the while as she handed me tissues). She replied by saying that I could be helped in two ways. One: Stop heaping extra things on my plate. (Maybe I could change make-yourown-pizza night to make-and-cleanup-your-own-damn-pizza night.) Two: Steady the plate itself with the help of antidepressants or hormones. To show me, she dabbed a pearl-size drop of estrogen gel on my inner wrist; though she said it may take a few weeks to have an effect, I instantly felt a tad better. I think it was less biology than the relief of feeling, for just a moment in my frenetic, overbooked day, mothered. (My own mother is long gone, and my old and frail father is yet another person I take care of.) It was a subtle but powerful shift in my self-image: I am not a machine. Sometimes it’s important to stop and allow my body to recover, rather than cram in three more errands. But most important, it was a relief for someone to name my condition—to reassure me that it was natural, was physical, and would pass.

The Help How four writers manage their malaise.

“Depression is the feeling that life has stopped short, has frozen you in grief and despair. I found that I could bring myself back by degrees if, by means of a CD or a radio station, I could respond on instinct to different kinds of music. Leaving it to chance was the point, switching from classical to jazz to freeform, anything-goes stations and telling myself, If you can be open to the unexpected—a note, a rhythm, a chord—in music, you can find your way back to doing that in life.”

“It was my first winter in Boston, and I was a 22-yearold graduate student: far from home, sad and confused. One afternoon I went for a walk along the frozen Charles River and just kept going and going, not returning until long after dark. The walking became a habit—miles in bitter cold, in ice and snow, following bridges and paths from Fenway to Cambridge and back again—and I remember a moment on the Longfellow Bridge where I thought, Maybe I can walk my way out of this, and eventually I did.” —LAURA VAN DEN BERG

“I walk to the center of my driveway and force myself to look up at the leaves against the sky. I pray, with the disclaimer that I don’t believe it will help, and I sometimes pray to believe in prayer. A cloud shifting can remind me that things are obligated to move, and that there is always weather. A trampoline almost always helps, too.” —MARY-LOUISE PARKER

—MARGO JEFFERSON

“I CAN FEEL THE BLUES COMING ON THE WAY YOU MIGHT FEEL A COLD SETTLING IN, SO I LIKE TO GET ON TOP OF THEM BEFORE THEY TAKE OVER. I’VE LEARNED TO TELL SOMEONE WHEN I AM STRUGGLING—AN EMOTIONAL HEALTH CHECK-IN BUDDY WITH WHOM I COMMUNICATE VIA PHONE, TEXT, OR EMAIL DURING MY DARK PERIODS.” —TAYARI JONES

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JUST THE

DOCTOR I ORDERED

O

Michelle Wildgen goes therapist shopping.

OVER THE PAST DECADE , I’ve met with three therapists. Each time, the relationship fizzled after a few meetings, and I’d tell myself I didn’t need therapy anyway. (Why, I should probably be doling out advice!) But more and more, I’m forced to confront the reason I went in the first place: I’m not so good with anger. I either simmer or explode. I can fashion more facets on a minor grievance than a jeweler on a diamond. So one day, after I once again catch myself looking for ways to win disagreements from weeks (okay, years) earlier, I decide to try again. The difference this time is that instead of just plopping down in front of a name on the HMO provider list, I’m going to do what any therapist would recommend: speed date. A consultation here, an intake meeting there, and I might just find someone with whom I really, truly connect. I meet with Jay Blevins at his thoughtfully arranged office. On his coffee table sits a bowl of colorful origami stars—far more intriguing than a tissue box. I’m nervous because Jay stresses his willingness to push a client. Yet he’s friendly, bald, and smiling, the sharpest edge on him a pair of architectural eyeglasses. Jay’s approach is “experiential”: He wants a client to feel the emotions they’re recalling, right there in his office. To my relief, this does not involve role play. Jay also notes that

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when salient, he may disclose more of his life than many therapists do. All in all, I have faith that he’ll be frank. Which is comforting, and nerve-racking. What will it reveal about my darkest self when I finally give in to the urge to sort those tiny origami stars by color? Next up is Barbara Perkins, whose softly lit office has the same calming effect on me as Mr. Rogers’s ritual of putting on his house shoes and cardigan. Barb has kind green eyes and stylish suede boots. If Jay’s M.O. is to urge his patients to dig deep, Barb’s is to be like a trustworthy older cousin. I snuggle up on an extraordinarily comfy love seat as she suggests I may have trouble validating my own feelings. Maybe, or maybe my feelings are just stupid. (Oh, wait!) Finally, I meet Laura Weisman Cleavland, whose focus on mindfulness seems a nice match for my rabbit mind. She shares an office with the counselor I saw with my husband a couple of years back. (Kismet! Or maybe just reasonably priced real estate.) We meet in a small room with a red velvet couch and two armchairs, a clock ticking meditatively on the wall. For some reason, I take the armchair and leave her the couch, wondering if the action is loaded—or if my worrying about it is. Laura flips on a lamp that leaves us in a womblike glow. Laura’s younger than I am, fresh-faced in a pair of striped Toms. (I tend to examine my therapists’ shoes. Only Jay’s, which were blocked from view by the coffee table, escaped scrutiny.) I don’t mind her youth; she’s the closest to a peer of the three, the sort of person I’d meet socially. She even drops a disarming F-bomb. She’s relaxed, but also prodding. She’s good at grasping what I’m saying, then taking it a step further. She pays attention to the emotions lurking beneath my words, to ways I might be judging or feeling victimized. When we accidentally go ten minutes over, it seems like a good sign. The truth is, I could work with any of these therapists. (How would Jay push me beyond my comfort zone? How freely and far would I roam with Barb?) But I like how Laura strikes a balance between Jay’s challenging style and Barb’s soft-spoken one. It just feels right. So I choose her. I’m excited to see what I can explore in therapy, instead of regarding it, as I did before, as something rotely beneficial, like a tetanus shot. I thought consulting several therapists would be like a series of awkward hookups, but it’s more like the beginning of a few fascinating chats. We laypeople may not know a lot about Freud or Jung, but we do know whom we click with. We know if, quite simply and most importantly, we want to keep the conversation going.

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NICE

TA L K I N G TO YOU

Sophie McManus on the therapist who helped her grow up.

A

AS A 20-SOMETHING, I measured life by

the hour, waiting tables. It was fun, sneaking bottles of champagne to the line cooks in exchange for an end-ofshift steak. Fun, too, the nights on Brooklyn rooftops under the jagged constellation of city lights, chainsmoking and making clever talk. Love and purpose—those supposed joys— were for someone else, in some other kind of life. I’d had no luck with them. But then one day I ran into a friend I hadn’t seen in a while. She paused, searching for what she knew of me. “How’s your cat?” she asked. She was the fourth person in a row who couldn’t think of anything else. “Great,” I said, and burst into tears. I spent my initial sessions hiding

in plain sight by making my psychotherapist, Janet, laugh and privately inspecting the knickknacks on her shelves and speculating as to why the one personal fact she’d shared with me was her love of string cheese. But slowly, despite myself, the habit of self-reflection replaced the habit of avoidance. With Janet, I was rehearsing being vulnerable around, connected to, another human being. Her expressed mission was to help me, to be kind, and to expect nothing in return. And so I learned to expect kindness. Actively considering your past puts you in the habit of considering the present. I wanted to be a writer. Was I writing, Janet asked? Had I applied to the graduate program I’d mentioned? It’s hard to forget your hopes when someone else is minding them. And so I became the person doing the minding. I left therapy and New York City for a writing fellowship by the sea. The session before our last, Janet said: “You have a homework assignment.” Seven years, and she’d never made a request. “What is it?” I asked. “You’ll figure it out.” During the fellowship, I would write a book. I would meet my future husband. I would find the work that gives my life meaning. And I would know that it was therapy that allowed all this, that let me believe such marvels could be waiting for me. But before that, as my last hour with Janet was ending, I screwed up my courage. “Thank you for helping me,” I said, my voice unsteady. Gratitude. My homework had been to admit that I’d needed her and that no harm had come of that need. To admit, in even this limited way, love.


What Your Shrink’s Really Thinking New to the talking cure? Psychiatrist Jeffrey Smith, MD, author of How We Heal and Grow, offers advice to help you settle into your sessions. What do I talk about?

Just start talking. Your unconscious mind is focused on one spot—usually an emotional place—like a cursor on a computer screen. If you come in with a fixed agenda, you may miss what the cursor is pointing to. And you should lay everything out on the table, even if it’s painful or embarrassing.

Are you just going to blame my mother?

Therapy isn’t about blaming parents. It’s about forgiving them for being human and accepting the burden of running our own messy lives. Of course, forgiveness happens only after you get through some healthy anger.

Can I tell you if you have salad in your teeth?

You should definitely tell the therapist what you’re feeling or thinking about her—that’s where the emotional cursor is pointing. For instance, if you were embarrassed for her, that would bring out a whole world of feelings and say a lot about you.

What if I lie to you?

That’s valuable grist for the mill. If you’ve lied to avoid uncomfortable feelings, talk about it. You can get to some very important material. All the

ways we skitter away from emotional discomfort—addiction, dissociation, running from intimacy—those are the things that get us in trouble in the first place.

where those feelings no longer take up all your energy and prevent you from being able to do other things in life.

Am I boring you?

Rarely. Even if you’re talking about the same things every week, I’m always hoping we’ll find a new angle on it. If I’m bored, it means I’m disengaged, and I’ll bring it up. I might say something like “The feelings you’re having aren’t really coming through, and I can’t put my finger on why.” When we talk about it, we’re working together and I become engaged again.

You can ask anything. If you’re curious, there’s probably a deeper reason. Therapists do reserve the right to not answer, which goes back to Freud’s idea that we should be blank slates. Of course, total objectivity is impossible— you’re two people in a relationship. But it’s a one-way relationship about your emotional needs. The more you know about me, the more likely you are to worry about my feelings.

Can’t we resolve my issues faster?

What if I’m attracted to you?

Everybody’s different. It may take quite a long time to work through trauma, and that can be difficult. But ideally, I’d like to see some measurable progress each month. If you feel things are stagnant, bring it up. Is there something you’re doing unconsciously that’s leaving you stuck?

Can we ever really resolve my issues?

Yes, but it may be like grieving for a lost loved one. The pain may never be gone completely, but you can get to a point

Why can’t I ask about your personal life?

This happens a lot in therapy. Often it’s about trying to resolve issues from childhood—for instance, you may be longing for the nurturing you didn’t get when you were young. Your therapist should maintain strict boundaries so you can talk about your feelings without turning the discussion into a flirtation.

Do you think about me between sessions?

People do pop into my mind. I just got a voice mail from somebody I haven’t seen in two years. The funny thing is,

I’d been thinking about her on the way to the office.

Do you care about me?

A social worker friend once told me, “It’s the love that gets people better.” When I say “love,” I’m talking about the empathic connection we have with our patients. But there’s a difference between caring and fixing. I’m not going to solve your problems, but I’ll help you go through the pain.

THERAPY MYTHS, DEBUNKED Elisabeth Counselman-Carpenter, PhD, a lecturer at the Columbia University School of Social Work, dispels a few misconceptions about time on the couch. Myth: My problems aren’t serious enough. Therapy is designed to help you enhance your well-being—whatever the issues may be. It doesn’t have to be longterm; it can be directed at any obstacle, small or large, that’s affecting your quality of life.

Myth: I can just talk to my friends! Loved ones can provide support, but can’t offer unbiased feedback in an environment that’s solely focused on you. Therapists go through years of training to learn how to listen and help clients problem-solve.

Myth: It’s all just a bunch of wallowing. Therapy is about making it so your issues no longer hold so much power over your thoughts and feelings. It can be a painful and overwhelming process, but your therapist is there to guide you through.

Myth: My therapist will judge me. As therapists, we know it takes strength to ask for help, and our job is to help you examine and solve what’s getting in your way. Judgment doesn’t play a part in that process.

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A Better Pill

AND...ACTION!

Critics say we’re overdiagnosed and overprescribed—but psychiatrist Neala Rafizadeh, MD, knows just how miraculous medication can be.

Three programs aim to transform the way we approach mental illness in America.

There’s an art to deciding if a patient needs medication...

NR: The most important factor is whether her day-to-day functioning is impaired. I’ve been seeing a woman who’s had a lifelong history of depression, who always just assumed that was who she was—that she was low-energy and negative, that everything took a lot of effort. I felt medication could help her.

...and to deciding which medication to prescribe.

NR: I consider how the illness is presenting. Is it an agitated, anxious, or melancholy depression? Each may require a different approach. If she has bipolar disorder, is she manic, depressed, or both? Does she want to have children? I choose meds that carry the least risk. If she’s worried about weight gain or sexual side effects, I’d choose a medication that

minimizes them, or a second medication to counteract them.

When the medication works, you’ll know it.

NR: Think of the illness as a cloud (a cliché, yes—but accurate) that medication dissipates, making life brighter. Or as a roadblock that medication lifts, enabling you to make more progress in psychotherapy. Or as a broken bone, where medication and psychotherapy are the cast. That’s a useful metaphor for people who want to go off their medication too soon—if you take a cast off prematurely, the limb is vulnerable to reinjury.

We always have options.

NR: Most patients will try more than one medication if they feel they’re being heard, that you’re in it with them. Sometimes the diagnosis is wrong. If, say, I think someone has depression but antidepressants don’t seem to help, she may actually have bipolar disorder. I’ll reexamine, get a second opinion, and make a new plan.

Bottom line: Help is here.

NR: Studies show that about 60 to 70 percent of patients will respond to antidepressants, but in my practice it’s closer to 90 percent, likely because it’s combined with psychotherapy. For example, the woman I mentioned didn’t want medication initially, so we stuck to psychotherapy. She improved but was still struggling with thoughts of suicide. She’s a strong person; she’d been able to push through depression for years. I started to question my judgment: Maybe this isn’t depression. But her suffering had become unbearable. When she finally tried medication, she became more hopeful and energetic, and saw how different her view had been. It doesn’t mean her life is perfect. Medication isn’t a panacea. But in the hands of a skilled clinician, it can be life changing—even lifesaving.

1

PHILOSOPHY’S HOPE & GRACE The beauty brand donates 1 percent of its U.S. net sales to organizations that promote mental well-being among underserved women and works to reduce stigma. Its social media campaign #IAmStigmaFree is a joint effort with the National Alliance on Mental Illness. (philosophy.com)

2

THRIVE NYC Chirlane McCray, the city’s first lady, hopes to create a standard of mental health care in the Big Apple that can be replicated in other cities— one that includes screening every pregnant woman and new mother for maternal depression, teaching kids resilience skills at school, and training 250,000 New Yorkers to respond to emergency mental health situations. (www1.nyc.gov)

3

MINORITY HEALTH AND MENTAL HEALTH DISPARITIES PROGRAM The National Institute of Mental Health seeks to combat the vastly unequal rate at which minorities and whites receive care for mental illnesses by uncovering underlying causes, partnering with other federal agencies to put mental health research to good use, and collaborating with hospitals to integrate mental health care into standard health treatment. (nimh.nih.gov)


The

STATE OF OUR MINDS PART 1

MY MOTHER, MY

SHADOW

The sadness that haunted her mother nearly eclipsed Katie Arnold-Ratliff’s life.

O

ONCE, WHEN I WAS 8, my mother took me to work with her for the day. She passed a hopeful note across her desk: “Do you want to be like me when you grow up?” Some days, she stayed in bed with a box fan trained on her face, the white noise a roar. Some days, she baked for hours, the kitchen’s prisoner. Some days, she asked me to lie with her in the bed she shared with my father. She’d hold my hand and say again and again, “You’re my best friend.” Her need was thick and humid, a weight on the atmosphere of my life. So was her mercurial temper. A word could wound or please, enrage or disappoint. Once, when I was 9, she crumpled when I whined that she’d eaten the last waffle, believing I’d called her fat. Once, when I was 6, singing in the back of our weary old minivan, she turned from the passenger seat and bellowed, “Enough,” her glare so murderous I couldn’t meet it. When I glanced up, her relentless eyes were still fixed on me, laden with disgust. I practiced invisibility. Once, I limped around with a fractured ankle for an afternoon until someone noticed. I resolved to stop speaking. I vowed to do better, to be better. If I got an A, she was unmoved; had I done my best? If I did my best and got a B, she was unmoved; one must rise to every challenge. What I remember of my mother from those years is what she wanted from me, which was love and excellence, and what I could give her, which was too little of both. The year I turned 12, I broke. Every night, I’d lie in my bedroom, which overlooked our quiet street, and sob for

hours, watching headlights project tree limbs onto the wall. The pain took the form of a voice. You’re poison. You deserve nothing good. People who say they love you are lying. I took it at its word. I didn’t tell my parents. Before long, the voice plagued me day and night— spitting its invective, chipping away, framing death as redemption. You shouldn’t exist. Do what’s right. Rid the world of the burden of you. When I was 17, I started ditching class. My grades circled the drain. I’d go to punk shows to get kicked in the teeth. I’d go to work at a coffee shop before school, and after, to not be home. I told only my boyfriend—I’d marry him six years later—that my mother was imploding. She went online for hours, chatting up phantoms; she barked at my little sister and brother, at my father, at me, if we got close to the screen; she wore headphones in the car to mute our bothersome voices. She no longer slept. She went to the gym daily, for hours. She didn’t know where I applied to college. It didn’t occur to me to tell her. I was 400 miles away, at a summer camp for young writers, when she emailed: “You’re a great kid, I’ll miss you.” I was relieved, for a moment, to feel the heft of her hatred lift. And then I understood. I ran, hard, to a pay phone. I still don’t know what she did or didn’t do. No one told me, and I didn’t ask. I just know that when I returned home a month later, she was our ward. We watched her shower, waited outside the outpatient facility while people in her group described driving off cliffs, gassing themselves in their kitchens. We learned words and phrases we didn’t know: psychotic break, bipolar disorder, lithium. The state took her driver’s license. She took a leave of absence from work. Many things were taken. I started college, developed a stomach stitch so gutting I couldn’t stand erect for nine months. I saw a doctor in week 3 of month 8, just before I quit school. Class required stillness; stillness was intolerable. I drove my tires bald, blew money on clothes, gained 30 pounds, drank like I was being paid to. I crawled back to school, eked by with a C average. I got married. The autumn I was 29, I found a book on adult children of mothers like my mother, parents like my parent. I shook FEBRUARY 2016

“Everyone wanted me to get help and rejoin life, pick up the pieces and move on, and I tried to, I wanted to, but I just had to lie in the mud with my arms wrapped around myself, eyes closed, grieving, until I didn’t have to anymore.” —ANNE LAMOTT, OPERATING INSTRUCTIONS

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The

STATE OF OUR MINDS PART 1

as I read: “You squelch your anger and your sadness and your fear.” “You find it difficult to accept caretaking when it’s offered.” “You learned early in life that your needs wouldn’t be met.” “You fear that while you appear responsible and loving, if you really let someone get close, they’ll discover the bad you.” I shook and shook and I read, and still didn’t see what I was, what I needed. The February I was 32, the sky shed snow in days-long salvos. I got the job done at work, got the dishes done at home, got high daily. I rarely slept. I went to therapy to discuss my failing marriage. I didn’t tell my doctor the voice’s allegations: You’re a net loss. You’re a sort of criminal. Your life is a series of monstrous delinquencies. I didn’t tell her I routinely dug my fingernails into my palms hard enough to leave bloody crescents. Therapy clichés exist for a reason, which is to say that all roads lead to childhood. My wise doctor was a Greek chorus: “I feel like I’m parenting my husband,” I said. Like you parented her! “I can’t count on people.” Like you couldn’t count on her! “Right, okay,” I said, shredding tissues and thinking about That. I thought about That in images: the knotted belt, the doorknob. Life, narrowed to a pinhole, then gone. I thought about That when friends asked, “How are you?” and I chirped, “Pretty good, you?” I thought about That when I paid bills, watched movies—when I did things the living do. Then one night I counted it off: weepy at 12, stony at 17, bereft at 24, desperate at 29. Now this. The voice hissed, It’ll only continue. What choice was left? A rule all writers

Being There YOU CAN’T ASSUME you know what’s

going on. Find a compassionate way to ask. Don’t start sentences with “you”— it will put her on the defensive. So rather than “You’ve been different lately,” say “I notice you’re more tearful, more angry. Is this something you want to talk about?” If so, tell her how you feel. “I feel afraid for you. I’m wondering whether there’s something you’re dealing with.” Instead of asking if you can do anything, suggest what it might be. “Can I take a walk with you? Take

learn: The right ending is the one that feels inevitable. The belt, hung from the doorknob, buckled beneath the chin; the forward pitch; the blood-filled eyes, antic pulse; the thorax close to cracking. Seconds were hours. The sounds were inhuman. What a shame, I thought, fading. What waste. Then, unbidden: My sister’s velvet cheek. My brother’s wiry hands. My doctor, opposite my empty chair. The dear friend, the proxy mother, who loved me, taught me, telling her child what I’d done. And my husband, and my husband, and my husband. I rose and, when I could breathe, said aloud, “You are very sick.” The relief of those words! The rightness, after all had been so wrong. The deservedness of a designation—sick—on which my mother had no monopoly. I confessed what I’d done, what I’d nearly done, to my doctor. She said, “We’re not dicking around anymore.” Then the journey back: the proper pills, double sessions, a second doctor to complement the first. The voice grew faint, a mutter from another room. Not long ago, my mother turned to me at a stoplight and said, weeping, “I’m sorry for the way I was.” She takes her medication. I take mine. We go to our therapists. We go on. My marriage finally ended, the vows grown obsolete; a different person had made them. But I’ve promised other things. That I will let people care for me. That I will save the only life I can. That I won’t die before I’ve learned to live. That day at her office, Mom asked if I wanted to be like her. I jotted down my answer, then passed the note back. “No,” I wrote. “I want to be like myself.”

“It’s so hard to forget pain, but it’s even harder to remember sweetness. We have no scar to show for happiness. We learn so little from peace.” —CHUCK PALAHNIUK, DIARY

Duke University psychiatrist Doris Iarovici, MD, explains what a person in pain really needs.

you out for a meal?” Try to lighten her load: “Can I pick up your kids? Walk your dog?” If you make it open-ended— “Is there anything I can do?”—highfunctioning people who are struggling may say no, because they don’t think they need help or don’t know how to accept it. Of course, there’s some “help” they don’t need. Rousing statements— “Don’t let yourself get upset about this,” “It’s not a big deal; put things into perspective”—are just frustrating.

Shoulds—“You should try harder,” “You should be over this by now”— absolutely do not work; telling people how they should feel rarely makes them feel better. Most people are trying their best to do so—the reason they can’t is because they haven’t yet figured out how. That’s not a failure on their part. If someone is struggling emotionally, we seem to believe she’s not a strong person. But the two are unrelated. Completely. Anything you can say to remind her

of that is good. As is conveying that she no longer has to live with this level of distress. Say, “I care about you, about what happens to you; I want to be here in a way that’s helpful.” People with mental illness have this fear: If they knew how bad I am, they wouldn’t want to be close to me. However you can, communicate that you understand that emotional issues are part of the human condition, that you don’t think any less of her. That’s what’s truly helpful.

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o Y UR c FA E AN OWNER’S MANUAL Why does your face need special care? It’s your calling card, of course. And it’s exposed to the elements every day— which means it’s vulnerable to dirt, pollution, and damaging UV rays. Here’s how to cleanse, treat, and protect it so you’re sure to be putting your best you-know-what forward.

ILLUSTRATIONS BY REBECCA CHEW


FACE TIME Females between the ages of 16 and 25 take an average of three selfies daily, which adds up to

48 minutes per day

CLEANSE and EXFOLIATE

C

CLEANSING, crucial to

keeping your skin healthy, removes dirt, pollution, and the dead skin cells that can make your complexion look dull. So you want to do it right. WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT things to look for in a cleanser? It should be a nonsoap formula, gentle, and— most important—suitable for your skin type, says Francesca Fusco, MD, assistant clinical professor of dermatology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai. TO FIND YOUR SKIN TYPE, wash your face with any nonsoap cleanser (Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser is a good choice). Wait about an hour. IF YOUR SKIN FEELS TIGHT ALL OVER, you’re dry: You’ll want a creamy, milky, or micellar (no-rinse formula (try BareMinerals Clay Chameleon Transforming Purifying Cleanser, Clarins Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs, or Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water). IF YOUR SKIN FEELS TIGHT ON YOUR CHEEKS but not on your forehead, nose, and chin,

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you’re combination: opt for a foaming cleanser (like Olay Foaming Face Wash—Combination/ Oily Skin). AND IF YOUR FACE FEELS GREASY OR LOOKS SHINY, you’ve got an oily complexion: Consider an exfoliating cleanser (we like Bioré Baking Soda Pore Cleanser) or one with salicylic acid (such as Dermalogica Clearing Skin Wash), says Kavita Mariwalla, MD, clinical assistant professor of dermatology at SUNY, Stony Brook. Keep in mind that except for acne cleansers, which penetrate pores on contact, treatment cleansers with antiaging ingredients aren’t effective: They’re not on your skin long enough to make a difference, says Ranella Hirsch, MD, a Boston dermatologist. “I tell my patients to CLEANSE DIFFERENTLY IN THE MORNING AND EVENING, ” says Fusco. On waking, a water rinse is enough for most complexions; if you’re oily, use a nonsudsy or micellar cleanser. Before bed, when you want a more thorough cleansing, use your fingers to wash with lukewarm water and a dollop of cleanser in a circular motion. Add a little pressure to stimulate circulation, says Mona Gohara, MD,

FEBRUARY 2016

associate clinical professor of dermatology at Yale University. A cleansing brush isn’t necessary, but can be helpful if you wear a lot of makeup—the oscillation of the brush can dislodge makeup and dirt from your pores, says Fusco. A brush also exfoliates, removing dead cells from the skin’s surface, which diminishes dullness, encourages a healthy glow, and helps treatments penetrate better, she says. (Get Clarisonic Mia Fit.) Hold the brush so it “floats” over the skin; scrubbing can cause irritation. Another way to exfoliate: Incorporate an ALPHA HYDROXY ACID (AHA) into your routine. AHAs loosen the “glue” between skin cells, so the dead cells slough off more easily, revealing smoother skin that reflects light better and leaves you glowing. In the morning right after cleansing, try an AHA lotion or pad (Elizabeth Arden Skin Illuminating Retexturizing Pads, 5%, if you’re a newcomer; Cane + Austin 30% Miracle Pad + for AHA vets). TO AVOID POTENTIAL IRRITATION, use the AHA only once or twice a week until you know how your skin reacts.

IN FRONT OF THE CAMERA, what with the posing and grooming, according to a survey commissioned by Feelunique.com.

STEP N o . 2

TREAT

I

IN THE MORNING, apply a treatment

serum that contains antioxidants like vitamins C and E, and a moisturizer that contains a humectant, like hyaluronic acid or glycerin. ANTIOXIDANTS fight free radicals, the molecules that damage the DNA in healthy skin cells, and have been shown to encourage collagen production. They also help mitigate the damage from UVA and UVB rays and

reduce the appearance of dark spots, says Fusco. Look for a formula that contains ascorbic acid (vitamin C) and comes in an airtight pump or tube. For best results, use a mix of antioxidants, says Cheryl Karcher, MD, a New York City dermatologist; for instance, you could apply a serum that contains vitamins C and E (try SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic) in the a . m ., and a lotion with an antioxidant such as selenium, zinc, or green tea in the evening (like Dr. Brandt Xtend Your Youth Face Cream). HYALURONIC ACID AND GLYCERIN are two of the best ingredients for drawing moisture into the skin. Moisturizing is key because it helps

JOURNAL: GETTY IMAGES

STEP N o . 1


support the skin barrier, which can be compromised by cold air, dry heat, and other environmental insults. When the skin barrier is compromised, you’re more vulnerable to irritation and infection, says Gohara. Keeping your skin well hydrated also temporarily plumps it up, DIMINISHING FINE LINES AND WRINKLES. (Try Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream with SPF 30.) FOR NIGHT TIME, the gold standard treatment is a retinoid, the vitamin A derivative that’s been shown to increase collagen production, regenerate elastin, unclog pores (reducing their appearance), and stimulate cell turnover (helping eliminate dark

spots). Great news: There are many formulations of prescription retinoids and their over-thecounter versions, retinols, so it’s much easier than it used to be to find one that doesn’t irritate, says Fusco. If you’ve never tried one (or if you have sensitive skin), start with an overthe-counter retinol; it will be less potent than a prescription and not as likely to cause redness and flaking. (Get PCA Skin Intensive Brightening Treatment: 0.5% Pure Retinol Night.) Use that twice a week and build up tolerance until you can use it every night. Then you can graduate to a cosmeceutical strength (just below prescription strength), says Fusco, following the same

routine. (Fusco recommends SkinMedica Retinol Complex.) If your skin tolerates that, you can move on to a prescription retinoid (such as ReFissa or a generic tretinoin). WHAT GOES ON FIRST? Apply products according to their consistency, beginning with the thinnest. In the morning, start with the treatment serum, then follow it with a lotion or a cream moisturizer. FOR COMBINATION OR OILY SKIN, begin with a vitamin C serum (try Perricone MD Vitamin C Ester Serum). Over that, layer a moisturizing lotion or gel (we like Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel with SPF 15). FOR MATURE OR VERY DRY SKIN, start with a

vitamin C or hyaluronic acid serum (such as Vichy Aqualia Thermal Dynamic Hydration Power Serum) and follow it with a lotion or cream containing glycerin. You can seal in the moisture by patting a face oil over that, says Fusco. (Clinique Smart Treatment Oil is a good one.)

HERE’S LOOKING AT ME!

8

Average number of times a day a woman CHECKS HER REFLECTION, according to a survey by Simple Skincare.


LEFT IS RIGHT It turns out you really do have a best side—and if you’re like most people, it’s your left, according to a study in the journal Experimental Brain Research. The left cheek tends to express emotion more intensely than the right, and in the study, display of emotion was perceived as attractive.

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STEP N o . 3

PROTECT

D

DID YOU KNOW that 90 percent of the visible signs of aging— hyperpigmentation, wrinkles, sagging skin, broken blood vessels— are caused by ultraviolet exposure? That’s why you’ll want to apply an SPF 30 sunscreen every day, rain or shine. Look for “broad spectrum” on the label (to ensure it blocks both UVA and UVB rays). CHEMICAL SUNSCREENS (avobenzone, oxybenzone) have a thinner consistency and should be applied after cleansing in your morning routine so they can be absorbed. (We like L’Oréal Paris Age Perfect HydraNutrition Facial Oil SPF 30.) PHYSICAL SUNSCREENS (zinc oxide, titanium dioxide) are less potentially irritating than chemical sunscreens and should be applied last. (Aveda Daily Light Guard Defense Fluid SPF 30 is a good one.)

For details see Shop Guide.

FACE VALUE WE ASKED O READERS HOW THEY FEEL ABOUT THEMSELVES FROM THE NECK UP. THE RESULTS:

73% 47% believe other people find their face attractive

41%

believe a smile makes a face most beautiful

37%

say their eyes are the feature they receive the most compliments on, while

22%

say it’s their teeth or smile, and

14% say it’s their skin

32%

say they feel self-conscious about their face SOURCE: SURVEY CONDUCTED ON OPRAH.COM

say their eyes are their best feature

23%

say their skin is the feature they’re least happy with

26% say that if they could change one thing about their face, they’d alter their skin texture

The second-biggest concerns were nose size or shape and teeth, which tied at

15%

Only

14% wouldn’t change anything

31%

feel satisfied with their features


HER

WILDEST DREAMS

REFUGEE HAWA DIALLO WAS HIDING FROM THE WORLD—UNTIL SHE DISCOVERED THE WORLDS HIDDEN INSIDE HER. BY Amy Maclin

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Hawa, December 2015. Opposite page: Her selfportrait Hidden Talent: Jubadeh (2014).

PHOTOGRAPH BY Scott M. Lacey


H

Inside, the house is warm, filled with books and paintings. Instantly Hawa feels calmer, comforted somehow. It’s like she’s in her own mother’s house again, though it’s very different. In the living room, Hawa’s new client, Charlotte, lies on a green recliner. She’s 95 and can’t stand by herself anymore, but at times a younger woman seems to peer out of her lively eyes. Hawa strokes Charlotte’s foot and says, “Hi, Mama.” Charlotte smiles and says, “Hi, baby,” as if she’s greeting a beloved returning home from a long trip. Hawa is relieved. Her previous boss fired her because she forgot one item on the daily shopping list—the first time it had ever happened—and the woman said, “I knew you couldn’t read.” She’d wanted an education badly. When she was growing up in Mauritania, her uncle begged her father to send the smart girl to school. But though her father loved her, he was set on tradition. At 13, she was married to her first cousin. She’s not sure how much older her husband was, at least ten years. After that, she spent her days washing clothes in the river and cooking

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Hawa calls Young Charlotte (2014) her favorite piece, although she admits, “They’re all my favorites.”

for him and his brothers. Sometimes she thought, This is not your life.

Hawa has plenty of caregiving experience: all the years she helped her mother tend to her grandmother, who lived to be 105. Now she makes Charlotte the baked apples she likes, cajoles her into taking her eye drops. She plays African musicians like Youssou N’Dour from Senegal, the Guinean singer Sekouba “Bambino” Diabate. Charlotte sways along with the music in bed. While her client sleeps, Hawa looks at the photos around the room, all of Charlotte at various ages—a little girl, a young mother, regal in her early 70s. Crescent, Charlotte’s daughter, put the photos there to remind caregivers that this frail, elderly woman has lived a long and interesting life. Charlotte, whose last name is Zolotow, wrote children’s books, and Crescent has arranged them all on a shelf. Crescent writes children’s books, too, and novels and cookbooks. Her name used to be Ellen Zolotow, but in the late ’60s, she

changed it to Crescent Dragonwagon. She laughs and says maybe she should have chosen something less flashy. The family is full of artists. Crescent’s grandfather Harry Zolotow made some of the paintings in the house. They have a big, bright wildness—like the one Crescent calls Harry’s self-portrait, a man whose head is exploding into yellow flowers. Harry was a Russian-born Jew, but Hawa thinks he must have been part African. Friends are constantly in and out. Hawa’s mother loved to feed people, and so does Hawa, who often finds herself in the kitchen with Crescent, cooking. Hawa is shy about her unsteady English, but food is universal, easier. She and Crescent talk about yam leaves, which Hawa sautés like spinach, and Bulgarian feta, which reminds Hawa of the cheese her mother used to make. They start to talk about other things. The news. Crescent’s home in Vermont. Hawa’s insomnia. One night Hawa tells Crescent that she couldn’t sleep all weekend after she heard about the “cynic” that escaped from the Bronx Zoo. “A cynic escaped?” Crescent says. “A cynic?” Hawa

© 2015 BY HAWA DIALLO, YOUNG CHARLOTTE, 2014. PREVIOUS PAGE: © 2015 BY HAWA DIALLO, HIDDEN TALENT: JUBADEH, 2014.

H AWA D I A LLO I S GROWI NG more fretful by the minute. She can’t be late for her new job. But the cab driver doesn’t know the town of Hastings-on-Hudson, New York, 15 miles from Hawa’s neighborhood in the Bronx, and he’s circling the streets while she tries to find the address from the caregiving agency. Then she sees a woman standing in front of one of the big, porchlined houses, smiling and waving both arms. That must be the daughter, Hawa thinks, surprised that someone would run out into a winter night just for her.


Hawa and Crescent, circa 2011, shopping for ingredients.

Hawa with Charlotte on her 97th birthday, June 26, 2012, on the porch of Charlotte’s house in Hastingson-Hudson, New York. When Hawa painted Worried Man (2014), she says, “I was thinking of my father.”

CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: DAVID RICHARD KOFF (2). © 2015 BY HAWA DIALLO, WORRIED MAN, 2014. © 2015 BY HAWA DIALLO, SATINA VILLAGE, 2014.

Satina Village (2014), a scene from Guinea, where Hawa’s great-grandfather was born.

pantomimes, and eventually Crescent understands that Hawa meant “snake.” They’re laughing raucously now, sitting at the kitchen table at 1 a .m. That’s when Hawa speaks it out loud, the reason she hates snakes. In Mauritania, the men who captured her chained her in a hut with a thatched roof, and snakes slithered through the straw. Sometimes they dropped through the cracks. It’s been more than two decades since she fled her country in 1989. She thinks she was about 25. The fighting erupted very quickly. All she remembers is the running, the screaming, people being burned alive. Hawa was caught when she went back for her nephew and half sister. She shows Crescent the scar on her left ankle, where the shackles dug into her skin. The men who held her captive, she says, did terrible things. Hawa has never wanted to talk about the past with anyone before. It’s best not to put her mind there. In her community, people just say, “It happens all the time.” She always thinks, But it happened to me. With Crescent, though, she feels free.

The previous caregiver had insisted that Charlotte didn’t like water, but Hawa thinks soap and water are as good as medicine.

She figures out how to sit Charlotte on the toilet so she can bathe her and massage shampoo into her scalp. Hawa’s first job in America was in a salon braiding hair, and sometimes it made her queasy, touching the heads of strangers. But with Charlotte, she feels like a mother with her baby. Hawa doesn’t tell Charlotte much about her life back home. She knows Charlotte is sensitive, that people get more sensitive as they grow older. She saves the horrors for Crescent and the kitchen table. One of her captors took pity on Hawa, pregnant with her fourth child. She tells Crescent she thinks he may have distracted the other guards to help her escape. She remembers the heaviness of her feet, the wound from the shackles already warm with infection. She ran to get her three children, who were with neighbors. They hid in a wagon surrounded by empty water barrels and made their way to the river, where she found a boat to get them to neighboring Senegal.

She lived there in a refugee camp for four years, buying and reselling fruit to survive. She might be there still were it not for the businesswoman who always stopped to buy from her. Hawa knew the woman must be rich enough to shop in the big markets, but she’d kept coming back because she liked to talk to Hawa. Finally the woman said, “You’re smart. Do you want to stay here selling oranges?” She told Hawa she’d help her however she could. Where did Hawa want to go? In the camp, the Red Cross stocked rice in bags that had pictures of the American flag on them. Hawa said, “I want to go to America.” The more Hawa talks to Crescent, the lighter she feels. It’s like the moment when you can finally put down a big basket of oranges and your arms go nice and floaty. She didn’t know how heavy the bad memories were until she unloaded them. Shame is heavy, too, and Hawa has been stooped under its weight. But about a year and a half after coming to Charlotte’s, she finally says it: She’s lived more than 40 years, and she can’t read. Crescent brings her palm to her forehead. The first time they talked, Hawa said, “Show me a recipe one time. It’s not going to be twice.” Now Crescent understands why: She never wanted to hear, “Look it up in the cookbook.” Crescent promises to help Hawa find a tutor, and Hawa feels hopeful. Maybe someday she’ll read Crescent’s and Charlotte’s books.

Crescent teaches a weekend writing workshop, and she asks Hawa to come along: Hawa can help with the cooking and also be part of the class, called Fearless Writing. Sometimes people have stories they are burning to share with the world, Crescent says, but when a story becomes too important, the person can become afraid to write it. They worry that the story will shrink in the telling, or that others will tear it down or ignore it. They come to Fearless Writing so they can stop thinking so much and just tell the story that wants to be told. Crescent gives the class writing exercises. In a quiet corner, Hawa dictates while Crescent writes down what she says. One exercise is called Sacred Lists: List 15 things you know about a given topic— FEBRUARY 2016

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insects, haircuts, lawn mowers. Today it’s birds. Hawa thinks of birds. She talks about the birds she sees on her walks in the neighborhood. She talks about the ones she remembers from Africa. Then she laughs and says, “I guess you could say a big metal bird brought me to you and Charlotte.” The next day, the class does a 15-minute drawing exercise. It’s just a rarefied form of doodling, meant to loosen everyone up and, as Crescent puts it, “release the

hours she draws, bearing down hard in some places, sketching lightly in others. At midnight, the drawing is finished. She looks at the intricate squiggles, which could be orchids or tornadoes or butterfly wings, and can’t believe they’re her creations. After that, Hawa never stops. She can’t stop. She makes more of the tangled abstract patterns, some with the letters of her new alphabet. Now her mind fills with colors. She goes to an art supply store for

She has never made anything for its own sake, a thing meant simply to be beautiful. emergency brake.” It’s like meditation— making lines and circles, lines and circles to form a pattern. Hawa has never drawn before. She has rarely even held a pen. She begins to make curves and flourishes. She has never made anything for its own sake, a thing meant simply to be beautiful. But now her hand glides over the page. She has only to imagine the next line and there it is. Hawa is falling away from the world, into a place she goes when she dreams at night. She has always had vivid dreams. When the 15 minutes are up, she signs her name at the bottom of her creation. Her children taught her how to sign her name. Everybody puts their drawings in the middle of the table, and someone in the class asks Hawa, “This is the first time you’ve done this?” Here is one more thing Hawa knows about birds: A stranger once told her that one day she’d fly like a bird. Over the years the words have been a pleasant thing to keep in her head, like a snippet of a song, but she’s never been sure she believed them.

The next night, after Charlotte has fallen asleep, Hawa sits down in a chair next to her with a pen and a notebook. This time she doesn’t stop after 15 minutes. For two

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paint. When she holds a brush, she’s no longer defined by what she’s not—not a man, not literate, not someone with money. Painting is about what is, what’s inside her. The pictures come out of her head like a waterfall, so many ideas she thinks she might be going crazy. She wants to paint people, but as a Muslim she was taught that it’s wrong to draw images of humans. She practices making figures, only on pieces of paper that she doesn’t show anyone. But she comes to understand that if God created her, he must have given her this ability, and why wouldn’t he want her to use it? She paints Africa then: scenes from the village where she grew up, the palm trees, the mosque. She misses the country of her childhood, before the fighting—her mother and father, the sounds of the children playing at night. Now she’s able to go back. She draws a snake slithering through a swirling design, with a V shape of flowers at his throat. Hawa knows he’s running from a woman who’s trying to choke him. She used to be afraid of the snakes. Now the snakes are afraid of her.

Charlotte is one of Hawa’s biggest supporters. She’ll ask, “What are we working on tonight, honey?” And Hawa

will say, “Well, Mama, I have an idea.” The two of them are always talking about Hawa’s paintings, even when Charlotte is sleeping and Hawa is working quietly next to her. The conversations happen in Hawa’s mind, in the place where the dreams are. Crescent doesn’t tell Charlotte about the bad things that happened, and Hawa doesn’t either. She doesn’t need to. Charlotte knows her whole life already, the way Hawa’s great-grandfather, a wise man, knew things without being told. One night Hawa makes a piece about the home she’s found with Crescent and Charlotte. She paints tiles for the house she loves, rectangular shapes for the train that brings her there every day from her apartment in the Bronx, swooping lines for the George Washington Bridge, which she sees from the train’s window. Charlotte’s eyesight is failing, so Hawa has to tilt the painting back and forth until she can focus. Hawa says, “I love this painting, and I think Crescent would love it, too.” Charlotte closes one stiff hand into a fist, holds it to Hawa’s chest, and says, “But what about you? How does it make you feel inside?” Hawa takes a big breath, lets it out in a whoosh. “Like a bag of cement has been lifted from my heart.” And Charlotte says, “Then I guess my work is done. It’s time for me to leave.” Hawa asks her where she thinks she’s going. She’s not going anywhere! That night the only place Charlotte goes is back to sleep. Six months later, when Charlotte really leaves, she doesn’t make any announcement. She just slips away. Hawa is sure she’s only sleeping. But when she gets close, she can see that Charlotte’s eyes are open a crack. Though Charlotte went blind a while ago, now her gaze is focused, as if she’s looking at something a little to her left. She’s smiling. What did she see? Charlotte passed so easily, Crescent says, like a leaf falling from a tree. That day Hawa starts a painting with shapes like falling leaves. They’re Charlotte’s footprints. Now Hawa faces another ending: She’ll be leaving this house. The life she’s had here, the things she’s created—maybe it was just another one of her dreams. She


The artist at home, surrounded by her work—and wearing it: Hawa used candle wax and dye to paint her dress, which was designed by her daughter Zaina.

SCOTT M. LACEY. MAKEUP: MEL PALDINO.

makes a painting that’s thickly lined like notebook paper, the lines filled with shapes that might be houses, or worried eyes. Hidden in the shapes are Ds for Diallo, Ws for her questions: Where will I go? What will come next?

In the days after Charlotte’s death, Hawa can’t stop thinking about one particular photograph of her, a close-up taken in her early 30s. Charlotte’s chin is resting on her hand, and she’s smiling slightly. She’s looking at something a little to her left. What does she see? With her phone, Hawa takes a picture of the photo so she’ll have it to keep. From the picture, she creates a portrait of Charlotte. She paints the shadows on Charlotte’s face, the folds of her dress. It’s the most realistic work she’s created so far, the art that looks most like life. Then she adds little bunches of wild flowers around Charlotte’s head, a radiant burst of gold behind her. Publishers Weekly runs a photo of Young Charlotte on its website along with the story on Charlotte’s memorial

service. There’s Hawa’s work among all the famous writers and their books. Hawa is still a caregiver, loving people who will soon leave her, which is very hard. She wants to paint all day. Sometimes she has three projects going at once so she won’t waste paint. It’s like tending to three pots of food on the stove. She makes collages, like the one of her mother carrying a basket of peanuts, with actual shells glued to the canvas. Abstract paintings with swipes and splotches, bright folk-art scenes, blossoming designs on satin. That’s what artists do, move through different periods of their work. Hawa’s just going through all hers at the same time. Sometimes she gets up at 4 in the morning so she can paint her dreams. Long before she knew she could make things, the dreams were her art, the worlds that lived inside her head. Now she talks to the paintings as she dabs at the canvas, thinks about what the dreams might mean—the trees and grasses in the place she was born, a flower with a face on each side. Only one face shows in the painting. That’s Crescent’s. The one on the

other side, the one no one can see, is Hawa’s. Only she has to know it’s there. Often she hides figures or objects in the paintings. She paints a grid of squares filled with dots and stripes. Step back to take in the whole, and you find a portrait of Hawa. She decides to call that one Hidden Talent: Jubadeh. Now when she hides things, she’s saying Look closer. Six months before she made her first drawing, Hawa dreamed about Crescent’s grandfather, the painter. Crescent had told her Harry did piecework in a factory before he discovered he was an artist. In the dream, he gave Hawa and Crescent each a box filled with gold bangles, weighty and shining. She said to Crescent, “What are we going to do with this gold?” Harry told both of them, “Just keep it.” Hawa thinks she knows now what the gold was. After Charlotte died, someone asked, “How much did they leave you?” She leaned back, smiled, and said, “A lot. So much, I can’t even tell you.” To see more of Hawa’s work, visit hawadiallo.com. FEBRUARY 2016

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Quotables

Guiding Lights

Pocket-size wisdom and insight in celebration of African American History Month.

EXCERPTED BY PERMISSION OF OR ARRANGEMENT WITH: WOODSON, BROWN GIRL DREAMING, © 2014 BY JACQUELINE WOODSON, NANCY PAULSEN BOOKS, AN IMPRINT OF PENGUIN YOUNG READERS; WHITEHEAD, ZONE ONE, © 2011 BY COLSON WHITEHEAD, DOUBLEDAY; MORRISON, JAZZ, © 2004 BY TONI MORRISON, VINTAGE BOOKS; ALI, THE SOUL OF A BUTTERFLY: REFLECTIONS ON LIFE’S JOURNEY, © 2004 BY MUHAMMAD ALI FAMILY TRUST AND HANA YASMEEN, SIMON & SCHUSTER; MENGESTU, HOW TO READ THE AIR, © 2010 BY DINAW MENGESTU, RIVERHEAD BOOKS.

LET THE

I believe in one day and someday and this perfect moment called Now.” —Jacqueline Woodson

CRACKS

BETWEEN THINGS

WIDEN

UNTIL THEY ARE NO LONGER CRACKS BUT THE

NEW PLACES FOR THINGS.” —Colson Whitehead, Zone One

WHAT’S THE WORLD FOR IF YOU CAN’T MAKE IT UP THE

WAY YOU WANT IT?” —Toni Morrison, Jazz

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In recognizing the

humanity

of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves

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Let’s Eat! L E MON Y C H IC K E N , A R T I S T IC L AT T E S , T I E-DY E D T R E AT S

CLUB MED

FOOD STYLIST: MAGGIE RUGGIERO. PROP STYLIST: KAITLYN DU ROSS.

Einat Admony, chef and owner of New York City’s Balaboosta, Taïm, Bar Bolonat, and Combina, shares bold twists on the Mediterranean recipes of her childhood.

I GREW UP in a small town five minutes outside Tel Aviv and learned to cook in my mama’s kitchen, rolling couscous by hand and preparing kibbe. Though Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine has a range of tastes and techniques, no matter what country you’re in, the food has some things in common: healthy fats, amazing vegetable dishes, and lively spices. No wonder it’s having such a moment. You might not usually make these dishes at home, but they’re so easy and tasty, they deserve a place at your table. While plenty of us have chicken in our regular dinner rotation, my tagine gets extra depth and zing from fresh cilantro, briny olives, and tons of lemon— the slices partially dissolve in the rich sauce, adding so much brightness. Roasted butternut squash is a common dish both here and in the Middle East; I drizzle mine with a creamy tahini dressing that has soy sauce and rice vinegar, giving it an Asian spin. (In my 20s, I backpacked around Europe and Asia, and those cultures had a huge influence on my cooking.) And though you’ll find wine-braised short ribs on Italian and French menus, the dates and chestnuts in my version provide a slightly sweet and totally Mediterranean note. Traditional recipes are great, but something magical happens when you mix things up.

PHOTOGRAPHS BY Emily Kate Roemer

FEBRUARY 2016

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Let’s Eat!

Braised Short Ribs with Dates and Chestnuts

2 Tbsp. canola oil 1 cup peeled, chopped chestnuts or toasted walnuts 5 large dates, halved and pitted 1 medium yellow onion, chopped 1 leek, white and light green parts only, halved and sliced 1 large carrot, peeled and sliced 1 celery rib, sliced 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed 1 Tbsp. honey ½ tsp. rosemary leaves, finely chopped ½ tsp. thyme leaves, finely chopped 2 cups chicken broth 2 cups dry red wine ½ tsp. ground cumin ½ tsp. paprika ¼ tsp. ground cinnamon 1 bay leaf 3 pounds beef short ribs 1 Tbsp. kosher salt ¼ tsp. ground black pepper Cooked Israeli couscous, for serving

Chicken Tagine with Olives, Cilantro, and Lemons

4 pounds chicken legs and thighs 2 large (or 3 small) lemons, zested and thinly sliced; zest, ends, and seeds discarded 1 medium yellow onion, quartered and sliced crosswise 1 cup pitted Kalamata or black oil-cured olives 1 cup roughly chopped cilantro leaves (from about 1 bunch), divided 3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil 2 Tbsp. honey 1 Tbsp. ground cumin 1 Tbsp. paprika 1 Tbsp. kosher salt 1½ tsp. turmeric ½ tsp. ground black pepper 5 whole cloves, crushed finely 2 bay leaves 1 cup chicken broth 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (from 3 to 4 oranges)

1. Preheat oven to 375°. In a large bowl, toss chicken with lemon, onion, olives, ¾ cup cilantro, oil, honey, cumin, paprika, salt, turmeric, pepper, cloves, and bay leaves.

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2. In a large Dutch oven or a heavy, ovenproof pot with a tight-fitting lid, stir together broth and orange juice. Arrange chicken, skin side down, and scatter onion-olive mixture over top. Cover and bake 40 minutes. 3. Increase oven temperature to 425°. Uncover, flip chicken, and gently stir. Continue baking, allowing liquid to reduce and chicken to turn deep golden brown, 30 to 45 minutes more. Remove and discard bay leaves. Scatter remaining ¼ cup cilantro over top and serve. Makes 6 to 8 servings. Active time: 30 minutes. Total time: 1 hour 45 minutes.

Roasted Butternut Squash with Asian Tahini and Pepitas

1 (4-pound) butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1" cubes 2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil 2 Tbsp. honey, divided 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed, plus 1 small clove, grated 1 rosemary sprig 2¼ tsp. kosher salt, divided ¼ tsp. ground black pepper

1⁄3 1 1 1½ 1⁄3

cup tahini Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. lemon juice Tbsp. plus 1 tsp. rice vinegar tsp. soy sauce cup roasted salted pepitas

1. Preheat oven to 450°. In a large bowl, toss together squash, oil, 1 Tbsp. honey, crushed garlic, rosemary, 2 tsp. salt, and pepper. Spread out evenly on a large rimmed baking sheet and roast, stirring once or twice, until very tender and deep golden brown, about 35 minutes. Discard rosemary stem. 2. Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, whisk together tahini, 2 Tbsp. water, lemon juice, rice vinegar, remaining 1 Tbsp. honey, soy sauce, grated garlic, and remaining ¼ tsp. salt. 3. To serve, arrange squash on a large platter, drizzle tahini over top, and scatter with pepitas. Makes 6 to 8 servings. Active time: 30 minutes. Total time: 1 hour.

1. Preheat oven to 350°. In a large Dutch oven or a heavy, ovenproof pot with a tight-fitting lid, heat oil over medium heat. Add chestnuts, dates, onion, leek, carrot, celery, and garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 8 minutes. Stir in honey, rosemary, and thyme. Add broth, wine, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, and bay leaf and continue cooking until vegetables are very tender, about 8 minutes more. 2. Season ribs with salt and pepper. Add to pot with vegetable mixture and stir gently to combine. Cover and roast until meat is fork-tender and easily pulls off bones, 2½ to 3 hours. Remove and discard bay leaf. 3. To serve, place couscous on a large platter and spoon ribs and vegetables, along with their sauce, on top. Makes 6 to 8 servings. Active time: 1 hour. Total time: 3½ to 4 hours.

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Let’s Eat! Chicken and Carrot StirFry with Cauliflower “Rice”

A trio of fabulous, simple-enoughfor-a-Wednesday dishes using three staples: cauliflower, carrot, and ginger. RECIPES BY Marcia Kiesel PHOTOGRAPHS BY Marshall Troy

Each recipe serves 4.

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Curried Cauliflower Steaks with CarrotGinger Dressing

In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, combine 1 carrot, peeled and sliced; 2 tsp. peeled and sliced ginger; 1 Tbsp. honey; 1½ Tbsp. white wine vinegar or rice vinegar; 1 tsp. Dijon mustard; ¼ tsp. salt; and 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil. Process until smooth; set dressing aside. In a small bowl, combine 3 Tbsp. oil, 1 Tbsp. curry powder, and ½ tsp. salt. Put 4 (1¼"-thick) center-cut cauliflower slices (from 2 large heads, trimmed) on a large, rimmed baking sheet and brush with curry oil on both sides. In each of 2 large skillets, heat 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil on high heat. Add 2 cauliflower steaks to each skillet, cover, and cook over medium-low heat until browned and just tender, about 10 minutes per side. Place a steak on each of 4 plates, top with ¼ cup each chopped peanuts and chopped cilantro, and serve with reserved dressing. Active time: 15 minutes. Total time: 35 minutes.

FOOD STYLIST: ALISON ATTENBOROUGH

3 THE POWER OF

In a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse 1 large head cauliflower, trimmed into florets, in batches until reduced to the size of large grains; you should have about 8 cups. In a large pot, heat 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil over medium heat. Add cauliflower, cover, and cook, stirring a few times, until al dente, about 5 minutes. Toss with ¼ tsp. toasted sesame oil and ¼ tsp. each salt and ground black pepper. In a large skillet, heat 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil. Add 1¼ pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into ½"-wide strips, in an even layer and season with ½ tsp. salt. Cook over high heat without stirring for 1 minute, then stir and cook about 30 seconds longer. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside. In the same skillet, heat 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil and add 8 small garlic cloves, peeled and lightly smashed, and ¼ cup ginger (from a 3" piece), peeled and cut into thin sticks. Cook over medium heat until garlic and ginger are deeply browned, about 3 minutes. Stir in a pinch of crushed red pepper flakes; ¾ pound carrots (about 4), sliced thinly on the diagonal, stacked, and cut into thin sticks; and 2 scallions, sliced. Cover and cook, stirring a few times, until carrots are al dente, about 3 minutes. Add 3 Tbsp. white wine, 3 Tbsp. soy sauce, and 1 tsp. sugar and bring to a boil. Return reserved chicken and juices to skillet along with ½ tsp. sesame oil and stir to heat through. Divide cauliflower “rice” among 4 bowls and top with stir-fry. Sprinkle with 1 scallion, thinly sliced, and ½ cup roasted cashews, and serve. Total time: 45 minutes.


Coconut, Cauliflower, and Carrot Soup

Preheat oven to 375°. In a large pot, heat 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil over medium heat. Add 1 medium onion, sliced, and ¼ cup peeled and minced ginger (from a 3½" piece). Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook, stirring a few times, until onion is soft, about 8 minutes. Add ¼ tsp. turmeric and ½ tsp. ground cumin and stir 30 seconds. Add 3 cups low-sodium vegetable stock or water; 4 carrots (about ¾ pound), sliced ¼" thick; and 4 cups (about 1 pound) cauliflower florets and bring to a boil. Cover and simmer until vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in 1 (13-ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk and boil, uncovered, over medium heat until liquid has reduced slightly, about 5 minutes. Season with ½ tsp. each salt and ground black pepper. Meanwhile, spread ½ cup unsweetened dried coconut flakes on a rimmed baking sheet and bake until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle with a pinch of salt, and set aside. In a blender, puree soup in batches. Divide among 4 bowls, top with reserved toasted coconut, and serve immediately. Active time: 25 minutes. Total time: 45 minutes.

MIXING BOWL The makings of a delicious month, from a sweetheart of a valentine to a Super Bowl beer buffet. The Find

Over the Top

For the Table

FAUX GLOW

A flameless candle is fantastic for the worry-free factor, but the static light doesn’t have a convincingly cozy effect. Now there’s an ingenious new version: Technology developed for Disney’s theme parks makes these battery-powered candles flicker and glow just like the real thing— minus the fire hazard. (Luminara pillar candles, from $32 each; qvc.com)

You don’t need to be a barista to give your latte an artful finish. Float one of Topperfino’s Belgian dark chocolate disks, which come in four flavors and more than 20 graphic patterns, on the foam, and it transforms your coffee into an elegant mocha. The disks can also add a little something special to your virtuous oatmeal or other hot cereal. (From $14 for box of ten; topperfino.com)

VELVEETA

—Alex Stupak, chef and owner of New York City’s Empellón restaurants and coauthor of Tacos: Recipes and Provocations

ACE OF HEARTS

For a valentine that’s good enough to eat, try this inspired cookiedecorating technique from Jocelyn Delk Adams, Grandbaby Cakes blogger and cookbook author. First, Delk Adams decorates heartshaped cookies with royal icing (or rolled fondant) and lets them dry completely. She then places a paper doily on top and sprays it with edible food-coloring spray, such as Wilton Color Mist. Finally, she repositions the edge, adds a second color spray, and removes the doily quickly to let the colors bleed into each other. The result? A romantic watercolor effect. We’re in love.

My Guilty Pleasure

“It’s the essential ingredient in my queso dip, which my wife loves so much that she asked me months ago to make a batch for the Super Bowl. I slowly cook a minced white onion on low heat until it’s soft— that takes about 20 minutes. After that I mince three fresh and three pickled jalapeños and throw them in. I pour in a can of Mexican lager and cook that down until it’s almost dry. Then I add ½ cup of heavy cream and a brick of Velveeta, cut into cubes, and stir until it’s all melted. You have to use Velveeta. It’s built to melt and stays liquid for hours, like cheese from another dimension.”

Genius Idea!

Easy Upgrade

Draft Picks

For a sophisticated alternative to the standard cooler-and-ice setup, we’re fans of this Super Bowl buffet from Mary Giuliani, New York City caterer and author of The Cocktail Party: Eat, Drink, Play, Recover. Her four-ingredient beer cocktails are foolproof: You simply set out bottles and garnishes and let guests mix their own—which means you won’t have to miss a single play.

LAZY MICHELADA 1 (12-ounce) bottle Mexican-style lager + 6 ounces spicy tomato juice (plus a few shakes of hot sauce, if desired) + juice of 1 lime + 1 bacon strip or 1 celery stick

SHANDY ITALIANA 1 (12-ounce) bottle wheat beer + 1 ounce Aperol + juice of 1 lemon + juice of ½ orange

FEBRUARY 2016

IRISH FLOAT 1 (12-ounce) bottle stout + 1 shot espresso + 1 scoop vanilla ice cream + 1 cinnamon stick

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WHERE THE EVERYDAY BEGINS AND ENDS HAVE A HEART Find the perfect gift for the one you love in our special Valentine’s Day O List, page 55. (Gianna Rose Atelier heart soaps, $11.50 each; caswellmassey.com) COVER On Oprah: Sweater, Donna Karan. Earrings, Dina Mackney Designs, $265; select Neiman Marcus stores. Clockwise from top: Ring, Yossi Harari, $5,820; Bergdorf Goodman, 800-558-1855. Bracelet, $10,400; us.robertocoin.com. Ring, Elena Votsi, $20,500; Stanley Korshak, 214-871-3600. Bracelet, $14,500; gurhan.com. HERE WE GO! PAGE 23 On Oprah: Dress, Lafayette 148 New York, $498; lafayette148ny.com. Earrings, Mish New York, $17,200; 212-734-3500. Ring, Angela Cummings for Assael, $3,100; mitchells .mitchellstores.com. Wedges, Stuart Weitzman, $435; saks.com.

GREGOR HALENDA. PROP STYLIST: RENEE FLUGGE FOR HALLEY RESOURCES.

WHY IT’S WORTH IT PAGE 58 Leopard-print, black studded, and green embossed-croc clutches, $198 each; dvf.com. Snake-print clutch, DVF, $198; 646-486-4800. YOUR FACE: AN OWNER’S MANUAL PAGE 118 Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, $14; drugstores. BareMinerals Clay Chameleon Transforming Purifying Cleanser, $22; bareminerals .com. Clarins Cleansing Milk with Alpine Herbs, $31; clarinsusa .com. Garnier SkinActive Micellar Cleansing Water, $9; drugstores.

Olay Foaming Face Wash–Combination/Oily Skin, $6; drugstores. Bioré Baking Soda Pore Cleanser, $8; drugstores. Dermalogica Clearing Skin Wash, $36; dermalogica.com. Clarisonic Mia Fit, $189; sephora.com. Elizabeth Arden Skin Illuminating Retexturizing Pads, $56 for 50; elizabetharden.com. Cane + Austin 30% Miracle Pad +, $88 for 60; sephora.com. SkinCeuticals C E Ferulic, $162; sephora.com. Dr. Brandt Xtend Your Youth Face Cream, $59; drbrandtskincare.com. PAGE 119 Olay Regenerist Micro-Sculpting Cream with SPF 30, $34; available in March at drugstores. PCA Skin Intensive Brightening Treatment: 0.5% Pure Retinol Night, $106; pcaskin.com. SkinMedica Retinol Complex, $60 to $90; skinmedica.com. Perricone MD Vitamin C Ester Serum, $105; perriconemd.com. Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel with Broad Spectrum SPF 15, $18; drugstores. Vichy Aqualia Thermal Dynamic Hydration Power Serum, $36; vichyusa.com. Clinique Smart Treatment Oil, $44; clinique.com PAGE 121 L’Oréal Paris Age Perfect Hydra-Nutrition Facial Oil SPF 30, $20; drugstores. Aveda Daily Light Guard Defense Fluid SPF 30, $39; aveda.com.

O, The Oprah Magazine (ISSN 1531-3247) is published monthly, 12 times a year, by Hearst Communications, Inc., 300 West 57th Street, New York, NY 10019, U.S.A. Steven R. Swartz, President and Chief Executive Officer; William R. Hearst III, Chairman; Frank A. Bennack, Jr., Executive Vice Chairman; Catherine A. Bostron, Secretary. Hearst Magazines Division: David Carey, President; John A. Rohan, Jr., Senior Vice President, Finance. © 2016 by Hearst Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. O, The Oprah Magazine is a registered trademark of Harpo Print, LLC. Periodicals postage paid at New York, NY, and additional entry post offices. Canada Post International Publications mail product (Canadian distribution) sales agreement no. 40012499. Editorial and Advertising Offices: 300 West 57th Street, New York, NY 10019-3797. Subscription prices: United States and possessions: $28 for one year. Canada and all other countries: $50 for one year. Subscription Services: O, The Oprah Magazine will, upon receipt of a complete subscription order, undertake fulfillment of that order so as to provide the first copy for delivery by the Postal Service or alternate carrier within four to six weeks. For customer service, changes of address, and subscription orders, log on to service.theoprahmag.com or write to Customer Service Department, O, The Oprah Magazine, P.O. Box 6000, Harlan, IA 51593. Due to the high volume of submissions, the publisher cannot accept or return unsolicited manuscripts or art. Canada BN NBR 10231 0943 RT. Postmaster: Send all UAA to CFS. (See DMM 707.4.12.5.) Nonpostal and military facilities: Please send address changes to O, The Oprah Magazine, P.O. Box 6000, Harlan, IA 51593. Printed in the U.S.A. From time to time, we make our subscriber list available to companies that sell goods and services by mail that we believe would interest our readers. If you would rather not receive such offers via postal mail, please send your current mailing label or an exact copy to Mail Preference Service, P.O. Box 6000, Harlan, IA 51593. You can also visit http://hearst.ed4.net/profile/login.cfm to manage your preferences and opt out of receiving marketing offers by email.

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N RECENT YEARS I’ve come faceto-face with mental illness, as several people close to me were hospitalized with severe suicidal depression, and manic and schizophrenic thoughts. More than once I’ve sat in the psych ward waiting to hear the diagnosis. Before this, I was certainly aware of mental illness—I’d read about it, and done shows on the horrors that can happen when we look away rather than deal with the disease. I didn’t fully understand it, though. As is the case with a lot of people, it wasn’t

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real to me until it was in my own family, until I was in the position of trying to help loved ones take better care of themselves and stay on their prescribed medications (a real problem, since many people who start to feel better want to go off them). I’m a good talker. But I soon learned that you can’t talk someone out of depression. Mental illness is real. And like everything else in life, it operates on a spectrum. Though there are common symptoms, everyone experiences it differently. Yet so many people live in shame, hiding their struggles, not seeking help. We, as

a culture, have not fully acknowledged how much help is needed. The only real shame is on us for not being willing to speak openly. For continuing to deny that mental health is related to our overall health. We need to start talking, and we need to start now. If you haven’t yet read “The Storm Inside” (page 96), please give it a look. And let the conversation begin.

JOE PUGLIESE/AUGUST

What I Know for Sure


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