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What happens when Oprah Winfrey and Michelle Obama come together for a conversation?


A few days ago, Netflix announced that the conversation between Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey, which also marked the final of Obama’s, The Light We Carry book tour, would be a part of a new special titled, The Light We Carry: Michelle Obama & Oprah Winfrey. On Tuesday night, the episode had a worldwide release and viewers witnessed a soulful conversation between two icons of the 21st century.  

The 80-minute episode is directed by Linda Mendoza and was filmed in Los Angeles, the final stop on Obama’s book tour.

I sat, snuggled up in bed with a bowl of freshly baked cookies, prepared to be mesmerised by my idols. And they didn’t let me down. 


The episode begins with a frenzy of sorts. Michelle Obama is seen getting ready and her daughters, Malia and Sasha join her for a short, charming conversation before she goes on stage. Oprah Winfrey walks onto the stage with high-octane energy and gets the crowd hyped up for what’s to come. Her introduction of Michelle Obama is witty, to say the least (we urge you to watch it for yourself), and so the night unfolds. 

The two begin by talking about the pandemic and the unknowness of it all. Obama recalls feeling afraid and angry because of being isolated, recurring issues of racism, and the spread of disinformation among other things. The conversation is interspersed with bouts of laughter as the two share the wildest things they did during the pandemic including a regular ‘Taco Tuesday’, until Tuesdays came along all too often, and how Michelle Obama almost made her two daughters sleep in the garage when they had just flown in from college. 


The conversation quickly moves on to dealing with the larger questions that we all faced in the middle of a worldwide lockdown. Obama’s book, too, was a result, response, and reflection of all that we had been going through. “People ask for advice all the time. They’re always asking me how have I done this, how do you overcome your fear? How do you feel seen when you’ve been raised to not see yourself in the world? I had already been grappling with these questions. But I can only interact with so many kids—and I’m thinking, they’re looking for guidance and they’re looking for a voice. So, I started shaping the book even before the pandemic, but I also found that I was spiralling into depression with a loop in my head and I needed to find my hope, and I felt that I had been losing a bit of my own light, and I had to search my own toolbox for ways to come out of that,” says Obama. 


What followed was a meaningful exchange about relationships, marriage, self-love, importance of leadership that goes beyond politics, being our own light and owning our story. Obama displays relatability in her own experiences of self-doubt and fear, shares an optimistic outlook towards a currently polarised world, shows resilience against odds, is encouraging in her words to prioritise mental health, and above all, leaves us all feeling hopeful about a better world.