Is Your Family Happy?
Twenty Five seasons four thousand five hundred sixty one episodes. I believe the Oprah Winfrey show was one of the greatest classrooms in the world Rolling never thought of it that way. The AHA moments the breakthroughs. The connections the occasional ugly cry so terribly every single minute L. O. Ell's the moments that matter. I opening light lessons. Never allow them to take you somewhere else. I'm bringing them back. It's time to open the ball. I personally chosen these classic episodes to share with you again. Every single person you ever will need shares that common desire. They want to know. Do you see me. Do you hear me. That's what I say mean anything to you. You're listening to the Oprah Winfrey. Show the PODCAST. Well today. What I'm doing is sharing wisdom that we have learned over the years. I'm sharing wisdom. That's been shared with me. And what we did our producers. We just pick five things because we thought five was easy that we thought could make your family happier but seem to be doing okay The first one. We've told you time and time again and this is so profound that the time I ran this before I got a letter from a woman in Texas. You know who you are want embarrass you but who woman in Texas. Who had told me that. She was preparing to kill herself on the day that she heard this and that she had collected all over pills to kill herself and she'd fed her children for the last time and sat down to watch the Oprah show and she turned it on and she heard this and decided not to kill herself but to live. I think that I come from a tradition of silence particularly my mother but there are so many other times when I want to say things to her or I want to. I want to hear I love. You haven't heard that very often from my mother and I try to make sure I give that to my children and I find myself trapped sometimes between both sides of the generation. There's a whole generation of people particularly I culture never learned to say which is just never. I don't ever remember hearing it ever ever ever ever this nothing more than a parent saying to China. And isn't it amazing how easily we say we love Popcorn? And we love certain. Tv shows but we don't say to our own family and so what this woman had heard was my Angelou say that and As a result of hearing that realize that that was one of her roles in life to be a spiritual teacher and leader for her children and decided not to kill herself. And we're all glad you did. This is is there a Diane favors here Diane? Diane Diane doesn't know why she's here. She just thought she was coming to the Oprah Show. And what did you want to say to your mom? I'm sorry Losing debt has torn our hearts part. We lost our dad earlier in March and I carried some guilt around because I never got the chance to tell him that I loved him in my heart though. I know that he knows that. Now but we didn't physically say the words I didn't know and I've learned from that. That tomorrow is promised to no one and we are here today and I wanted to let you know hearing today that I love you I love you so much and you are my everything and I hope to become everything that you already are thirty. That's pretty good. David Bracken worst. David Bracken David David. How're you David's daughter? An is here because she wanted to start a new tradition in their family. Would you want to say and I don't want that to happen to me That's what I'm worried about since you travel so much I can't believe I'm twenty years old and I don't think I've ever told you that I love you and is really needs to know that you're the most important man in my life and nothing. Nothing GonNa Change that. I love you the most profound Sinton's who can ever speak I love you. Say I love you all right? There are other ways MOMS and dads can say I love you because a lot of you grew up Sure the way I did where nobody actually said it. Okay I the tissue but people have ways of saying I love you without actually saying the word so we went straight to the experts to ask about times. They know they didn't hear the words. I love you. They certainly felt them. My Mom and dad making me do a lot of chores because they love me and these tours are to my bed clean up. After my sister my brother and sister they read me but bedtime stories. They man lacks Every morning because she loves amount saved them a room until like go to sleep richer. My brother didn't put any toys under the bed is off one. My mom gives me hugs and kisses. My parents told me to cover my mouth when I sneeze move here. Tell me not to talk with my mouth full. My parents taught by take out the trash. Wash the dishes do my bed partner saying how they love me. Give me discipline. Oh Yeah just one within your for God I have I have to. I have to turn the computer off after Dad. I like many all they make me eat. It react parents. Do I show my children love by reading with them at night? Especially that's my all time favorite thing to do show. My daughter loved by learning from her and listening to her casting kisses. We like to kiss goodbye and hello hugs. I'm not afraid to roll around in the grass and make her laugh and plan the swing sets. I try to show. My daughter loved by being available to when she needs me so I thought I love her by hanging out with parent gone girl. He thinks with her. I quit work when she was born. And which was a big decision and she's now seven Sa- best decision I ever made together. A few of our own favorite as we all can say Bring sweaters and other. Eat your vegetables and be careful. And what about those MOMS? Who cut the crusts off their kids. Sandwiches does not love. I don't know what is all right. Stephen Covey is the author of Seven Habits of highly effective families. I can't say enough. Good things about it. If you're a person who has a family? This should be a staple in your family this book. And here's our second secret to family happiness. We think if they'll have a family night once a week where they meet together to talk about their values and their principles to plan schedules to have fun to have an activity once a week. One night the family I know what you're going to hear from people is. We don't have the time and if you don't have the time for one night or at least one hours a week and that means the family is not the priority. Yeah because you see you're trying to communicate the value and the other person so I give you my valuable time you matter more to me than anything. See what you want it. What's important to you is supremely important at once. You make that commitment. Almost everything else will flow from it that principle and so many others are represented in the seven habits of highly effective families. Every family should own this book. I'm telling you now I we do a lot of books on this show and if I tell you that the book is good you can trust me. It really is because other principals represented and here he says ultimately we must decide either to steer to go where the river takes us. The key to successful steering is to be intentional about our family rituals another point. I thought you'd like to hear if we do not teach our children's society will and they may and we will have to live with the the seven habits of highly effective families. The buys family has made time together. Their top priority. Top priority buys. Where are you one of the main things we like to do? Is we like to have our meal together. One main family meal a day you do you make time for it. Yeah we we do our best. It's it's harder now when the kids are getting older together. Us All together but We try that you know. That's a main focus for us. Yeah and do you find it hard to stay on track sometimes Sometimes I mean there's some there's days of the week it doesn't happen because every you know somebody is missing but but we try and as much as we can. We do. Try to work our schedules around as well. Even a few years ago. When my husband worked nights we had our family dinner at noon. You did. Yeah we had dinner together at noon and then in the evening the kids and I would just have to do what you have to do. Yeah well one of the things. I love about this book. Can you tell? I love the book Stevens says it. Good families is how he starts book. Even great families are off track ninety percent of the time. The key is that they have a sense of destination. They know what the track looks like and they keep coming back to it time and time again so this feeling a lot of people. I know feel like they're off. Track there out of control out of control but if you have in the family a sense of direction and mission which we're GONNA talk about next. Then your family can always get back on track. This next one sounds like it's from a company manual but it amounts to knowing your goals and putting them down on paper are third family. Secret comes again from Stephen Covey. The seven habits of highly effective families. Who says there's nothing more important? Nothing listen to this for family than writing a mission statement and physically writing it down not just talking about it not just having in your in your head but have everybody in the family come together right down everybody contributes to it so everybody in the family knows the way that family is set up so you have to. I decide what is most important to this family? That's a family mission statement once you have that and you really have bought into it and everyone has participated in developing. You've got the key to solving any problem that comes along and Michael Manning. Were here after having just written their mission statement for their family. What's happened since then? Well because our families are constantly growing we have to seventeen year. Old An eleven year all. They're on their own right now. In terms of jobs and things we have a mandatory Sunday night dinner where everybody knows by Sunday. They have to be at home for dinner. And it's rather a traditional family dinner or were out on the street but we're together so Sunday is the day. What was the mission statement for the family? What were some of the things you all said? Well because we realized and our family was growing so rapidly We wanted our family to grow closer as they grow as they grew older. And then how does what you do? Every day manifest itself through that statement well according to what my oldest son Sharara. He says that we have a functional dysfunctional family. That's most people so I'm the cleaning point there. I'm the one that has to make sure that all the schedules are untagged. And everybody goes in different directions. So I'm the one that will come together on Saturday or even on Friday and say look Sunday. We're doing this. We're doing that. We will be together on Sunday afternoon and we will be together. So receiving mark southern also wrote a family mission statement Christina Mark. Where are you right here? Okay Hey what happened? What was your statement? Our statement was to spend more time together. We had a very chaotic very stressful life with three small kids and it was kind of out of control but we Our mission was to make time to spend the time together. We got more organized more because the truth is once you set the mission this is the truth for everything in Your Life. Those of you. Who are business. People understand this to very clearly and Stevenson. Theory is Stephen and Sandra whose wife who helped write this book because she helped raise it. Twelve children to Is Is that you treat your family like a business in many ways right if you set the mission then everything else comes out of the mission and you can have what you want in life once you decide. This is the way it's going to be. And everything else flows out of that and yes. It's really changed. We're not so stressed anymore. So uptight and everything is 'cause you always going back to the mission who are who. Who are we as a family? We won't tolerate this behavior in this family. Because that isn't who we are as a fam- exactly right all right. Sarah Branca's the author of simple abundance and has been a frequent guest on our show. Sarah gives our forth secret to family. Happiness make your house a member of the family. Make Your House a member of the family you know. Sometimes we think that houses are what we should bait when really it's a home. A home is what we really are so the idea is to bring a sofa minus into the home and one of the ways that you do that is by making every member of the Family. Contribute to your home. Have the pictures of the family Around as decoration it will give the children such a deep sense of joy to know how proud you are. Kids love to think that they can bring their friends to your home and they can that when you relaxed and realize that no room should really be off limits. It's a family and you should be happy that everybody is there now. Sometimes love grows best in little houses. Anna and Raymond say their family of nine. Kids is closely knit because you grew up in a small space. Yes really three bedroom apartment house with a kitten it will but we. We have a lot of fun though we get together after dinner ads in each bedroom. Yeah and you know we talk a lot. We share a lot We're very close and you'd think being in a small house helps you be closer. Yeah it has. If grew up I grew up in a small house so I was really close to my family to well. Sometimes you know. The nicest homes are too big to feel homey. I know somebody as a matter of fact my business manager had a huge house and just moved out because he said the house wasn't family friendly because they're always speaking on the you know inner comes all the time anybody else aware of that. Yeah You Square Foot House to thirty two hundred square foot house and we're really struggling to be connected in this large space. We find that we're only really living in a few rooms as it is and so we're continually going towards those those rooms and the other space just stuff that I have to dust and vacuum. Keep me wow so you were doing it right all along. Anna Therapy Roenick is the woman who inspired by keeping a gratitude journal and to start taking notice of the simple miracles in life. And here's what Sarah has to say about our next lesson celebrate the every day. I think that what happens is that we tend to think that it's the big moments that mark our lives The the new baby moving into the new home. You know the big promotion. Actually those are the punctuation marks. The narrative of our lives are how you eat dinner. How you put your children to bed. It's the simple. It's the small and it's the sweet One of my favorites is A spontaneous grace and instead of just a prayer which is always appropriate Why not have each member say the one thing that made them the happiest that day? It's sort of an oral gratitude journal. There are just so many different little things that you can do. And the amazing thing is that you're probably doing a lot of them anyway but if you just focus on it just bring your attention to it. That's the consecrating you'll be able to discover that you're going to have many many opportunities to celebrate and cherish every day life Sarah who wrote simple abundant brandon sarraute symbol abundance and who started us with the idea of everybody keeping Grateful Journal says that you should have happiness grace. Because you know I I as many of you grew up in a home we had to say grace and every night. You're trying to think of a different one in trying to probably get yours out. Quick Jesus wept. Jesus whip So that you can move on with the dinner but the idea of saying Meister Eckhart said this that if the only prayer you ever say is thank thank you then that will be enough so the idea of having happiness grace at the table is that not only. Do you get to say the grace and got appreciate you being happy as much as memorizing verse from the Bible but you get to see what made your child or any other member of your family particularly happy and grateful that day. I think that's a nice thing to pass on all right next. Meet a former. Nfl SUPERSTAR WITH A new goal on the field. He was adored by Fans Jim. Kelly was a star quarterback who led the buffalo bills to four straight super bowls off the field. He was surrounded by love from his wife. Jill and daughter Aaron what everybody always told you it was going to be like when your daughter runs down the hallway or she sees runs down. Yellen Daddy Daddy Daddy. This Valentine's Day gyms thirty-seven birthday. Another beautiful gift arrived a baby boy named Hunter Jim who grew up in a family of all boys at always had dreams of having his own son but several months after hunter was born. Jim took a blow. That was harder than anything he'd ever faced on that football field. My son smiled at the beginning. A little bit and all of a sudden gradually started disappearing and all of a sudden my son became very stiff. We found out that he suffered from Lou dystrophy and his disease called Krabbe's and the onus is fatal majority of children don't live past the age of two and that's something that it's hard for us to accept at only eight months. Oh this tiny baby boy has taught the Kelly family the most important lessons of their lives. I've learned to appreciate time. Appreciate my faith in God. Appreciate my spouse. Jim Appreciate Aaron and hunter and most importantly learned unconditional love. True unconditional love is all about. I want anybody feel sorry for me. We won't people to be more aware of that. You look across the dinner table. You look in the backseat of your car. You look you know the children around you look at your your son your daughter book at Your Wife. Thank God for what you have. Hunkin boy on level two well Jim Kelly and his wife Jila with their son Hunter. Because they want hunter's story to teach people to cherish every moment with their children whether it is a child who is ill or child who is healthy. I thought that was so profound what you said. You just look right around you. You look in the backseat of your car. And what I was saying to you before we we during the commercial break. Is that one of the reasons we wanted to do this. Show so that people get that before there is a crisis. There is an illness in their life. That's what it's all about. I mean you think of everything goes on I mean I was blessed to have come from family six boys and no girls. I say that's a blessing to have no but we grew up appreciate each other know what our values were. And when I decided to marry Jill and we had our daughter Erin and of course. Our Son The first couple of months you know it was a happy. Stay in my life. I mean my son born on my birthday which is Valentine's Day. My brothers all having boys so the pressure on us to have a boy and all of a sudden here. We were had a healthy at the time. Thought it was a healthy baby boy. In within two months he started developing stiffness and within the four-month period yet we have tested and all of a sudden we found out was look dystrophy but it was. I think it was. They thought it was cerebral palsy. Actually at first we thought it was Kinda like because One of the main symptoms of crab as disease is that they are extremely irritable and Irascible. And I it's just like a constant scream twenty four hours a day when they're sleeping and they didn't he didn't do much of that and so we thought it was calling for so long. We are changing formula. Like usually do one child has colic and then We went in and they looked at him and we're just checking for an ear infection fact and they said that he was showing signs of cerebral palsy and at that time of course we were devastated however with cerebral palsy. If you do something about it you make you know I. We could've made his life the best we possibly could and we start doing that however they live Schobul. Palsy isn't fatal. Yes that's right. And so we had another opinion and they said he had cerebral palsy again or he was showing signs of it and we just weren't really convinced with that. He continues to be irritable and he continues to be more stuff and then we had some blood work done. And that's why we it's so how did they come up with Krabbe disease? And what is that? Well Krabbe disease. It's an a family luke. District fees and what lucrative strategies are they affect the white matter in your brain and in humans brain? The white matter controls any movements Swallowing your eyesight your hearing and Crabbe specifically hunter lacks an enzyme in his body to help produce mylan which is white matter and because he lacks the enzyme. There's toxins build up in his brain and actually you know kill his brain basically and how he actually has the disease is that you and I both carry a gene gene. A A couple of hundred thousand to one odds of US both Karen X. Wallace thing is. We both have to be carriers of the gene nor for our son to have the onus and it didn't affect air twenty five percent will be affected with the disease like counter twenty-five percent will not even have any any signs or any symptoms of it. Erin fifty percent it can be carriers like John and you both had to have it in order for to pass. Wow that's what we say amazing so at first what did what did you do you. Were you this hopeful this you did? You have this great outlook at first or I you cry. Cry Was adored for We we shed many tears many days. Many nights Trying to find ways of making hunter as comfortable as possible and also trying to make our daughter realize that you know. We're not just here to hold hunter. I mean at the beginning of me. She's only two and a half years old and when he first was diagnosed with our daughter was two years of age so she wanted the attention to present a positive came out of. Mommy's little girl turned into daddy's little girl really and I spent more time with Aaron because Jill was so involved in making sure hunter was taking care of our family became so close now not just our family but our surrounding fans my family with my brothers and of course. Joe'S FAMOUS MOTHER. Because you know it can work both ways a lot of times when there's illness or disruption in the family people go the opposite way. So what is the prognosis? What did the doctor say? They're pretty much hesitant. Rate now have come out and really tell us how long. There's only been two two cases of infantile krabbe disease disease where the children have lasted past the age of two right. Now we just give him as much love and care right now as possible. You know. There's different medications. He's on to make him less irritable less stiff and we're trying to wean them off some of them and seeing if he could open his eyes a little bit more which ninety percent ninety five percent of the time. His eyes are closed. But we're coming to find out that it's not really the medication as soon as the disease disease you know. This all seems very sad. But that your house's really a very happy place it's very happy I mean it was such well. Of course we have a two and a half daughter who makes us extremely happy with the little things that she does make us laugh constantly. But it's happy because we spend every single minute. Doing whatever a normal family would do together. We have a good time we play in the playroom and we appreciate that time so much more because we have no idea what tomorrow might bring. You always aware that you may not have them tomorrow. Yeah I think about it every day. I mean there's not a day that goes by that I don't however I try not to look into the future too much because it is so hard. What if you said to Aaron about it if anything no now we don't really say much you know. I don't think this is the time to say it anyway and I don't think she would understand. She knows that hunter you know is dealing with a few boo boos here and there but otherwise she. That's her brother and this is normal to her it. But what's what's cute about. Liz Hunter has to be fed through a G. Tube through his stomach and heirs heirs. Baby dolls are fed through to stomach now and Her little but hunter has a little button. But everybody else button. Is your belly button. Our daughter feeds all her baby. Dos Really Cute. And we don't do anything to push away from doing. She enjoys it. She loves our son just as much as we do. I mean causing little hunter. Boy You're going to be all right. And she holds hands. She probably kisses him as much as we do. Yeah that's Aaron over there half sleeping half mile and that's your mom Jill right. Who helps you have you were saying earlier? You have a lot of family support. We have a tremendous amount of family support. Jim's brother number one has been quite a blessing. But my mother is a truly. Don't know what I would do without my mom because you always hear things about mother-in-law's and I've been blessed with mother-in-law that I have if it wasn't for her. We don't know where we would be a number one is. I have a career doing broadcasting of games and I'm away on the weekends but more than that Jackie which is. My mother-in-law has taken leave from absence to spend more time with hunter. Because we don't know what tomorrow will hold the more than that. She is able to spend time with him and give us time that we can spend at least go out to dinner every once in a while because there for a few months we were doing nothing but taking care of hunter and Aaron which is which is what we wanted to do. We find ourselves at nine ten o'clock at night after we both onto bed. We'd be to spend time with each other and we would go to bed so Jackie. Thank you very much for everything you've done. Received thousands and thousands of letters and one thing that we do and Joe does and we have helped doing it as we were keeping books binders and we probably about ten binders now. For All the cards and letters cards everything you can think about. I mean so. Many people have been been very good to us. I mean we're our first. Big Fundraiser is all star Cafe in New York City. They up just for us for one hundred. Hope Foundation the support. That we've gotten I mean people just lend their hands a friend of Jerry blue. Kite took care of made. Sure we were able to come in here. We could bring all of our family or so. Many people pulled together to share. This foundation isn't for hunter. It's for other people who have other children who had its hundred. Hope is setup number one for awareness like we were talking about the more people are aware of it. The better off children are down the road. And what we're doing now we're setting up the foundation for Research and hopefully Don road the cure but our number one goal now is to make people more aware of it because our pediatrician didn't know what crab as disease was. Our doctors didn't know what it was and all of a sudden the more people that we've talked to the more people have heard about it. We all son find out all these individuals more people with crab as disease but one thing that we want to both. Do we want to be an impact? We want to be able to do something and finally we just want people to realize. Love your child no matter fees disabled whether you know something's wrong with them or whether he's healthy. Make sure you love your child as much as possible today because you never know. What's what's in store for you tomorrow. Thanks everybody thank you very much. Thank you Jim. I'm Oprah Winfrey and you've been listening to the Oprah Winfrey. Show the podcast if you haven't yet go to apple podcasts. And subscribe rate and review. This podcast. Join me next week. For another Oprah show the podcast and I thank you for listening.