Turns out “The Divine Miss M,” Bette Midler — the legendary singer and actress behind such iconic films as “Beaches” and “Down and Out in Beverly Hills” — is still working on herself. On the Nov. 11 episode of “Oprah’s Next Chapter,” Bette tells Oprah that she is “still struggling” with something major: feeling settled in her own skin.
“I’d say I’ve settled into myself about 60 percent,” Bette tells Oprah. “The other 40 is still struggling.”
Watch as Bette shares this and other revelations with Oprah — including what she says is one of the single best decisions of her life — on “Oprah’s Next Chapter,” which airs Sunday at 9 P.M./8 CT on OWN.
Bette’s Life Wisdom Quotes:
1. On Life…”Life is not fair. And you have to choose your battles, because there are some that you cannot win. If you’re passionate about something, then you should pick up your flag and run with it.”
2. On Intelligence…”I’m confident that I’m as intelligent as many people, but I know that I’m not as intelligent as some. So in the presence of hyperintelligent people, I’m a shrinking violet because I don’t want to look like a fool. I know a little about a lot and a lot about a little.”
3. “On Singing…”I read a comment that made me think I should stop singing for a while. And I didn’t want to stop singing, because it was the only thing I loved. At first I thought, Maybe I’ll get better and eventually please the person who wrote about my singing. But then I thought, I probably will never please this person. I should just do what pleases me.”
4. On Winning…”Remember, I came from the middle of the Pacific, so I didn’t know how hard it was to win an award. When I was nominated for my first Grammy [Best New Artist, 1973], I expected to get it — why wouldn’t I? I had never lost before. In Hawaii, I was a big deal!”
5. “On Image…There’s the media-driven universe, in which the public perceives you in a superficial way. Then there’s the universe that you actually inhabit, where you have to get up even if you didn’t sleep so well, and you feel like crap and your face is swollen.”
6. On Marriage…”Marriage is such hard work. And it’s full of rage and real human drama… In a marriage, you struggle and struggle and struggle, and then you realize that you have to ride the horse in the direction it’s going. You stop trying to pull the reins in another direction.”
7. On Motherhood…”You have to be alert. When my daughter, Sophie, came out of the womb, she was instantly alert, as if she had been here before. And she was a little disappointed that she was here again… She’s very independent. But if she’s upset about something, she will absolutely let me know. She’s great — a real tough cookie.”
8. On Aging…”When you reach a certain age, you have fulfilled your childhood dream and whatever your first or second adulthood led you to do. Then you’re in your third adulthood, the one that leads to the grave, and you ask yourself, ‘What will I do between now and then?’ Instead of thinking in terms of glamour, you start thinking in terms of reform — your contribution to the world.”
9. “On Death…Even if the whole human race dies off because we keep fighting and killing each other and being heartless, the planet will take care of itself. Eventually, after millions of years, it will cleanse itself, and new life forms, maybe better ones, will come. Meanwhile, we’ll have gotten exactly what we deserved: annihilation.”
10. On God…”You mean do I believe in God? Oh, I’m mad about God! That’s why I’m divine. When I started saying ‘Oh, that’s divine!’ I had no earthly idea that it had anything to do with God. Then I started reading about divine inspiration and divine light — I’m from a generation of seekers, after all — and finally I realized, ‘Oh, my God, they’re talking about me! I’m part of the cosmos — everyone is.'”