Iyanla Vanzant Opens Up About The Loss of Her Daughter And How It Changed Her Life For The Better
Iyanla Vanzant is fresh off the heels of ending her hit reality series “Iyanla Fix My Life” and sharing how the pain she experienced in life motivated her to help others heal from life’s difficulties.
Speaking with Hoda Kotb on her “Making Space” podcast, Vanzant opened up about the loss of her daughter Gemmia, who died from a rare form of colon cancer on Christmas Day in 2003.
“Well, it changes who you are as a woman. It changed who I was as a woman, first for the worse, and then for the better,” the spiritual healer said.
“God must’ve really, really trusted me to give me a soul to bring into life and to trust me with the courage to send her out,” Vanzant added.
She credits the experience and her childhood abuse with helping her heal and be a resource in the healing of others.
“In relationships, people don’t bring you love or give you love. What they do is make you aware of the depth of love that you are,” Vanzant said. “I would say that the purpose of my life required that I had a depth of experience that would allow me to speak to people in the depths of their pain, in the depths of their sorrow.”
Now, with her show behind her, Vanzant explained how easy it was for her to decide to walk away from her second show with Oprah Winfrey.
“They say God never gives it to you all at once. He throws a pebble, and then she throws the rock,” she said. “So when Spirit said to me, ‘It’s done,’ I’m like, ‘OK, I’m out.'”
Vanzant shares a long history with Winfrey, dating back over two decades. It’s a relationship she goes into more detail about her life struggles and the loss of her daughter in her 2010 best seller Peace From Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You’re Going Through.
“You find your purpose by standing strongly in who you are, and asking for what you want,” Vanzant told Kotb. “Do what you’re good at. That’s what your purpose is.”