Did anyone know Maya had been raped at the age of seven, and did not speak again until 13?
That she had been a cabaret dancer? That she was raised by her grandmother? That she became pregnant at 16? That she was savagely beaten by a man she was dating? That her mother crashed in and rescued her, nursed her back to health, and then sent her off with two huge man friends of hers to "get" the man who did it?
Yet, with all those things that happened, with everything she had against her, she became a woman strong and together enough to show the rest of us how to do that, how to think about life in a new and strengthening way.
Maya said, in an interview, that she found her strength, found the courage to rise, from an exercise in which she was made to say, "God loves me.", until suddenly, she got it. That there was a loving and limitless Force out there somewhere who knew her to her bones and loved HER, specifically and individually and forever.
From that, so Maya said, she understood that she was here on purpose, that she had nothing to fear.
Interviews with Maya will be on OWN (Oprah Channel) fairly often within the next two weeks or so, I think. Watch for them. There was an interview Sunday. I had already seen it.
Here is something else I learned that you might enjoy:
When Maya was tired, or felt too small for who she had become, when she needed to be stronger than she felt she could be, she remembered that, just as each of us has been, she had been paid for by the long line of her grandmothers, stretching back into time. Whatever that unknown grandmother had suffered to leave the legacy of life for Maya, she did not want to let her down. She spoke of envisioning the grandmothers looking into her face, looking right into her eyes and saying, "So it was YOU I stood on that auction block, took that beating, lived through what I lived through for. Don't you let me down now, girl. Don't you do it."