Saturday, March 15, 2008

dr. phil and friends

Let me preface this story by saying that this has been quite an unusual week for me.

Tuesday I saw a facebook invite to go to the Dr. Phil show Thursday. He had invited students from Concordia to come and hear Bishop T.D. Jakes speak. I thought it would be fun, but quickly dismissed the idea because of classes.

Wednesday I missed by observation hours and a meeting in Brea because I was not feeling great. If I had gone to Brea I would not have been sitting in front of the cafeteria when two girls set up a table with a huge sign that said DR. PHIL. I called my mom to ask her what she thought I should do. Go to class and miss being in the audience at Dr. Phil or be in the audience at Dr. Phil and miss class? After our talk it was clear to me that going to Dr. Phil is a rare opportunity that I might never have again.

I went over to the table and talked to the girls. They said that there were still plenty of openings to go, so I signed my name on the sheet. I was so excited to go that I even went to Target to by a new skirt that looked like "business attire."

Thursday morning my alarm went off at 6:30 a.m., I growned for a second before remembering what occasion I was waking up so early for. I quickly got ready in my business attire, complete with pearls and kitten heels and made my way over to Grimm Hall to meet the bus that would take me to see Dr. Phil. While waiting for the bus to arrive I talked with some of the other people going. One of the girls and I were debating if we would make it back for our afternoon class to take a quiz. (We didn't.)

Around 8:15 a.m. our bus finally arrived. To be honest we really did not need a bus, probably just a van because only 15 people went. Come to find out, the people who arranged the bus for our school was not too happy because they thought 40 students were coming and they spent $600 on the bus. Oops.

Considering. the time we left, heading straight for Hollywood, traffic really was not too bad. On the way to Paramount Studio we drove by a huge Hollywood cemetary...I was told that is were many stars are buried. We arrived at the studio are were told that we were early. We were also told to leave all cameras and phones on the bus. After going through security we learned that yes, we were early for the taping of the second show, not for the first show we came to see. Another oops. We sat outside, in a long row and waited for probably 2 hours, maybe a little less. Luckily, they put out a few snacks. This was quite a blessing because little did we know that would be our lunch.

Finally, someone came and told us that Dr. Phil had to tape a second show and was running late so it would be 30 more minutes. (Once inside he said the show was about something news breaking and it needed to be to the satellite by one in the afternoon. I figured out today that it is about the Eliot Spitzer Sex Scandal. That episode will air Monday.) As we stood up to FINALLY walk inside, I glanced ahead and had to do a double take. Robin McGraw (for those of you who don't know, this is Dr. Phil's wife), was about six feet in front of me shaking people's hands! She was going down the line apologizing for the late start and thanking us for our patience. Needless to say, I got to shake her hand! She was the cutest little thing and so friendly. Oh, and her shoes were to die for! It was hilarious to see the girls behind me from school after they shook her hand. They are BIG fans. BIG!

After that it was not long before we were in the door and being seated. (Side note: we were some of the LAST people to be seated.) As we walk in, it was freezing and I was noticing that there were not many seats together. The guys directing us said that he need four of us to come with him so he counted me and three others out and told us to follow him. I was quite surprised as he led me and another girl to THE FRONT ROW! The FRONT row!!!! He told us that he would be moving us around during the breaks. I was not going to complain about having to move...we were sitting in the FRONT row of the Dr. Phil show (even if it was only temporary)!

Once we were finally seated I began to wonder what the show would actually be about since we missed the show with Bishop T.D. Jakes. Before my question would be answered, two men came out on stage to 1. get us pumped up and give away free books and 2. to remind us that we would be filmed and not to pick our noses. Before long, the music started, the crowd cheered and Dr. Phil came out on stage. If I wanted to I could have reached out and touched him because I was in the FRONT! (Sorry, I am not going to get over that! It was sooo cool!) A couple things I noticed about him was that his teeth are so white and perfect that they looked like plastic and also his accent is more strong and pronounced than I remembered it being when watching him on tv.

Then my question about the topic of the show is answered. Dr. Phil said that we would be making tv history because he was having 5 doctors on the show to talk about some health topics and talk to some guests on the show. When the doctors came out I noticed a very good looking man (later I will find out that he is Dr. Travis Stork, who appeared on The Bachelor and all the girls in my Concordia group are crazy about him). At one of the breaks I was quite tempted to ask him for his phone number...and I could have too because I was in the FRONT!

There were about three different stories related to health and medical issues. The first woman was a 21 year old mother of infant twins and a 3 year old who was losing her memory. The doctors talked to her about mom-nesia and said they would help diagnose her.

Next was probably my favorite segment about a little girl, Teeba, who was badly burned in a car bomb in Iraq. A couple from America decided to help her get the medical treatment she needed. She is just the cutest and sweetest little girl! Dr. Phil read her a note that Barbie wrote her saying that she wanted to give Teeba some gifts. Some people rolled out 2 wagons full of Barbie and American Girl toys, and a Barbie Jeep. It was neat being so close to look her in the eye and smile at her. She was precious.

The last segment was about a 21 year old girl who had two different size breasts and the insurance company would not cover a breast augmentation. One of the doctors on the show was a plastic surgeon and said that he would do the surgery for her. When the show is actually aired they will have the final results of her surgery because they are going to film the process.

It was interesting to watch how they changed the set and moved so many things during the "commercial" breaks. The girl I was sitting next to and I were trying so hard not to fidget during the filming and not look over at the cameras that were staring you in the face. During the breaks we would adjust and fidget and then try to sit super still so the camera wouldn't catch us moving all over.

So, remember how I said that the guy who seated us said he would move us during the breaks? He did not move us until right before the LAST segment. So I was able to sit in FRONT for almost the entire show! I have to say, that it was must warmer up front than in back. :)

Afterwards, we slowly left the set and all received little gift bags for our patience with candy and a pen and a free book. I traded mine by Dr. Phil for one by Robin McGraw with one of the girls on the bus.

Unfortunately, because we were so late in seeing the show, we did not arrive back on campus until 3:30 p.m. Just in time for me to be late to my last class of the day. I was not entirely disappointed.

It was a wonderful and unexpected day. I am so glad I was able to experience this. Even though it did not all play out how it was supposed to I am happy it happened how it did.

P.S. I am not sure when exactly the show will be aired. I did hear someone say August, but we really don't know. However, they did say they were using this show as a jumping off for a new show (produced by Dr. Phil's son, Jay) called The Doctors, starring all the doctors who were on the show. I will be keeping my eye on the Dr. Phil website and let everyone know when to turn on the tv and watch for me. :)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Life Lessons

As I was driving to Brea in the not fun traffic yesterday, listening to my drive time mix, John Mayer's song Stop This Train came on and it got me thinking.

No, I'm not colorblind
I know the world is black and white
Try to keep an open mind
But I just can't sleep on this tonight

Stop this train
I wanna get off
And go home again
I can't take the speed it's moving in
I know I can
But honestly, won't someone stop this train?

Don't know how else to say it
Don't want to see my parents go
One generation's length away
From fighting life out on my own

Stop this train
I wanna get off
And go home again
I can't take the speed it's moving in
I know I can
But honestly, won't someone stop this train?

So scared of getting older
I'm only good at being young
So I play the numbers game
To find a way to say that life has just begun

Had a talk with my old man
Said "help me understand"
He said "turn sixty-eight
You renegotiate"

"Don't stop this train
Don't for a minute change the place you're in
And don't think I couldn't ever understand
I tried my hand
John, honestly we'll never stop this train"

Once in awhile, when it's good
It'll feel like it should
And they're all still around
And you're still safe and sound
And you don't miss a thing
Till you cry when you're driving away in the dark

Stop this train
I wanna get off
And go home again
I can't take the speed it's moving in
I know I can
Cause now I see I'll never stop this train

I feel like lately life has been moving faster than I can keep up with and I am barely hanging on. So much has happened this past year: graduation, traveling, moving to a new city and school, making new friends, painful personal/spiritual/emotional growth, sickness, heartache and reconnecting with old friends. All those things were beyond anything I could have imagined happening and I can see how God has used all those things to work in my life.

The bottom line is that this train of life is going to continue to go at full speed and there is nothing I can do to stop it or begin again. As much as I would like to un-do or re-do different parts of my life-had I not experienced them, lessons would not have been learned and I would not be where I am today. This is life, whether I like it or not it is here and now. So often I have the mind set that my life will begin when (fill in the blank) happens, but here I am close to 23 years old. This is it and I want to appreciate each delicate moment of it before it is gone.