So at first I started thinking…how smart of the people associated with this show. Pack it all up and take a trip to the Bahamas for the finale of OWN’s Why Not? with Shania Twain! Then I remembered…Shania & Fred are getting married this week! Suddenly Fred picking fruit and cute bike rides during twilight made a lot more sense. The only somewhat gag moment was when Shania exposed her pet name for Fred…Beauty Man. Oh but please, he also had one for her…Petite femme. I am going to be kind and NOT go there, but it is KILLING me.
After all the drama, Shania’s finally seemed ready to move into the next phase of her life. Grateful now for her relationship, she recognized that if she had been granted this relationship earlier on in her life, “maybe I wouldn’t have known what to do with it”. I believe opportunities come to you when you are ready for them. The death of her marriage was merely a stepping stone to where she needed to be. As for her sister Carrie, she couldn’t be happier…“I haven’t seen my sister live and love ever like this before.” As Fred spoke of how him and Shania never fight, I worried for a moment. Their relationship has been so wrapped up in the common betrayal from their past. However, they clearly love each other and have built their relationship on their friendship…one of the strongest of foundations.
To bring in the New Year and bury the past, Shania and Fred exchanged vows in front of loved ones admist a breath-taking sunset on January 1, 2011. With her son, Eja walking her down the aisle, Shania sparkled in a simple white dress with a long flowing veil. Staged between palm trees as the sun set behind them…Shania and Fred exchanged their vows.
Today is our day to begin
Together through thick & thin
We won’t give up we won’t quit
Our moment is now this is it
Today is our day everything us going our way
Today is our day nothing can stand in our way
A month into the marriage and still in the Bahamas, Shania was able to meet back up with Dr. Gordon Livingston. A touchstone throughout her journey, he helped her to reflect over the growth she had made. “Someone once said a lot of people die with their music still inside them” he shared. He cwent on to remind us that “courage isn’t fearlessness. It’s just the ability to keep going when you are experiencing fear”. Realizing that her marriage was the catalyst for her to stop pretending everything was OK in her life, Shania appeared determined to be a new woman filled with hope and optimism.
With her personal life becoming healthier, Shania knew she still needed to deal with her voice. Constantly dragging herself along, she finally made the choice to stand up and walk. She agreed to record a duet of “Endless Love” with Lionel Richie for his upcoming album. WHAT??? You can’t. I love that song. That is Diana Ross’ song. Please don’t! Then I took a deep breath and realized it was happening (actually already happened) so I just needed to go with it. THEN the second wave came…OH, poor Shania. That sucks. Good luck with that!
Lionel Richie came to her in the Bahamas and it was happening. Soon it made better sense. Lionel had just been through a similar situation. At the height of his career, he had stopped singing for 4 years while he dealt with his father dying, a divorce and surgery on his own vocal cords. It took awhile for Lionel to find his courage to get back out there putting him in a unique position…he understood. He wasn’t worried about Shania on stage on singing, he was worried about her sitting on the sidelines. That is where her problem lied.
Finally with enough encouragement, Shania asked herself “why not? and moved forward. She meet Lionel at his vacation home in the Bahamas. She couldn’t help but feel anxious with so many music industry people around. Before they even began, Shania’s lack of confidence bore through as she reminded everyone of her “vocal limitations”.
Deciding to jam a bit while sitting on the couch to ease into it, things actually got tenser. I hate to say this, but I can’t ignore it. Shania was not at her best vocally, at all. I started to get really worried. This may get embarrassing. Nothing was meshing. Confident enough to hit the microphone, Shania and Lionel tried to relax. Unable to stop it from happening, Shania knew she just had to go with it. Now…once again I have to point out the obvious. The way OWN cut this, Shania was tearing up Diana’s song. The moments of pure drunken karaoke was killing me.
Lionel tried to direct her around the mayhem and silently motion directions to those helping out. He led Shania done the path and eventually it all came together. It was absolutely beautiful. Well done, Lionel and Shania…it sounded incredible! A true gift from Lionel. A day that began with uncertainty and self-doubt, ended with Shania finding her singing voice….and saying “now I can’t stop”.
With a new lightness about her, Shania knew she couldn’t have done this without her sister and Fred. Shania hesitated when asked about performing on stage, but then replied “that is a very natural next step”; and within a month after taping, she accepted an offer from Caesars Palace. She begins performing at the Colosseum in 2012. At the end of the episode, Shania showed us all the world premier of “Today Is Your Day”. I can honestly say that I will miss hearing that song each week. It has become sort of an anthem to those who fall down and bounce back up…stronger and more determined to live a better life.
Once again, OWN brought us a docu-series that helped us all to grow in one way or another. As this show comes to a close, we are all reminded that fear stops us from living. The quote that Dr. Livingston referred to earlier actually was written by Oliver Wendell Holmes. It reads “many people die with their music still in them. Why is this so? Too often it is because they are always getting ready to live. Before they know it, time runs out.”
My mother always taught me “if you fall down, get up”. It was simple and until this series I didn’t realize how important the lesson was. Don’t spend your life on the ground preparing for what is to come. Get up, because today is your day and nothing can stand in your way!