Roschelle Ogbuji at Donate Life Hollywood Inspire Awards
Donate Life Hollywood Inspired Stars, producers, and other entertainment personality with the gift of life and hope. On this Wednesday, I had the honor of presenting an award to The Nate Berkus Show for covering our daughter Anya's Gift of hope and life by being an organ donor. I have to say that I was very overwhelmed with love by the reception of other donor families and transplant patients. I had the opportunity to meet a beautiful woman who lost her daughter at 25yrs. in a riding accident over 10 years ago and made the decision to donate. She was featured in a short film sponsored by Donate Life Hollywood and the winner of the Donate Life Hollywood Film of the Year Award. She spoke honestly about her anger and frustration at the death of her daughter as well the decision to donate. She calls her daughter's recipients her caretakers. Isn't that Awesome! I was moved by her rawness and honestly in her emotions. I could identify with her on so many levels. I haven't experienced anger or hatred toward my recipients, which she expressed. I have experienced anger at the shear fact that I lost my girls and their senseless deaths. Those seasons will come and go for the rest of my life but I am honest with myself when I am in one of them. I often tell others around when I'm in one of those season, so they can understand that the anger hasn't anything to do with them per se but its deep within my soul. For the most part those people close enough to see the anger and pain manifest are quite generous with Grace. I digressed. Back to the Donate Life Hollywood experience. There were many celebrities and producers being honored for their work in T.V. and Film on the topic of organ donation and transplantation. A producer from Family Guy was from Beachwood, Ohio! That was cool to know that Ohio was representing! Another celebrity writer was from Shaker Heights as well. He grew up here and hasn't found any other place like it in the world. That was great to know as well. Another One of them that was honored and I had an opportunity to meet and talk with was Brad Ellis from Glee. He is the pianist on the show and is in every scene that Rachel and Finch belt out their powerful duets. Brad is a heart recipient. Over ten years ago he was given a second chance at life and with his career as a musician. After the awards he asked to speak with me and commended me on making a powerful decision to live and celebrate life despite the darkness that I could allow to envelope my thoughts and life. I was humbled by his words of encouragement. I told him that these next words I was going to steal and coin as my own because they resonated so well with my soul. He told me that lots of people go through hard things in life and it weighs them down so they can't enjoy life. "You have a light that is powerful". It could have went out on Dec.1. 2007 but it didn't. Because you relied on something outside of yourself to fuel you through the abyss of grief, pain, and sadness you are able to give off that light as powerful as the experience you went through. Some people can project the pain they have gone through but not joy at the same level. You can! Then I told him my secret.... It's requires a few home and office supplies to carry it out. "Brad", I said "I'm Duck Taped and Stapled to the Cross. I am not leaning, clinging, or neighing but Grafted to it for life." "That light that you see in me is The SON shining His light through me. When I try to do it in my own power I lose that light and my human emotions and selfishness is blinding to those around me. However, as I have discover that His light is not flawed in anyway so I only want that to come through me. Still working on doing that all the times. " We go through things in life to bring us to an appointment that those events help us to reach. I don't wish anything l've gone through on anyone but God knows what he is doing and how he is preparing each of us toward our calling and purpose. I would have thought this comment was something to store away in my mental Rolodex to pull out when needed in the years to come, but as fate has it another messenger was sent to me with a similar message. On my way back home from Hollywood, I missed two flights and was highly upset about the senselessness of the situation. Then as I was preparing to leave the airport for the second time, I thought to myself that their must be someone on the next flight that God wants me to meet. I was halfheartedly joking but also knew that the circumstances that lead to missing each flight was obscured. Well, there was! Her name was YVE Evans and she is a world renowned Jazz and Gospel singer. (I didn't know who she was at the time of our meeting until she told me.) I'll have to write a separate blog about what she told me because it is so profound and I am still processing the message. It actually made sense out of all the craziness I have been dealing with over the last 5months. Actually, over the last 3.5 years. What she said was this, " What you are going through is to help you understand people who will go through this in the future. How can you have creditability if you haven't gone through and come out in tact? God will use you to go into the darkness to help people see His light. He has given you His light to guide for those who have closed him out directly. Like Sojourn Truth and Harriet Tubman you are going to bring people out into freedom with your story and testimony of faith and hope. Be Real. Don't hide your mistakes and failures because you will use them as your badge of truth and transparency. In this message she told me that as I raise and fall and raise again. I am building a legacy for my children here now. They are seeing my perseverance in faith and life. The transparency you live out before them will make your testimony even more powerful and they will stand in a generation that refuses to stand. " I was so blown away by her message that I was speechless! I know, I know, me....SPEECHLESS! There wasn't a total eclipsed of the sun that day and the temperature in Cleveland didn't go below zero. I didn't have anything to say and I just received the message that God found away to get to me. I always say that we can all have burning bush experiences if we slow down and look for them in the everyday moments that turn into extraordinary experiences. By Golly my Cali-Holli trip was all around that and a side of grits!!!! I will write more about the wonderful women I met from my Mocha Moms, Inc. who attended the Inspire Awards with me. Until then Stay Blessed.