When you wish upon a star
Makes no difference who you are
Anything your heart desires
Will come to you
If your heart is in your dream
No request is too extreme
When you wish upon a star as dreamers do
Fate is kind
she brings to those to love
The sweet fulfilment of
Their secret longing
Like a bolt out of the blue
Fate steps in and sees you through
When you wish upon a start
Your dreams come true
And so it was for my dear friend Rita Wilson who received a star with her name upon the Hollywood Walk of Fame this week!
Rita’s star will shine just 4 steps away from her husband Tom’s 🙂
So cute in 1992!
Are you looking down Mom & Dad??!
Everyone knows Rita. Whether it be through her career as an actor and producer, her 30+ year happy marriage to another beloved actor and now, more recently as a talented singer-songwriter.
In addition to her myriad of professional accomplishments, Rita’s willingness to share some of her most difficult life challenges with the world, surviving breast cancer and going through the pain of losing her beloved mother to Alzheimer’s disease, has resulted in her being one of the most admired and truly relatable women in “Hollywood”
So it was most befitting that on March 29th, 2019, Rita should receive a star in the very town in which she was born and raised. Her parents, sweet Dorothy & Al, would be so proud!
And, as Fate can indeed sometimes choose to be kind to those who put all their heart into their dreams, this week also coincides with both the release of Rita’s latest album (her 4th!) and 4 very full years since her cancer diagnosis and subsequent (almost to the day) successful surgery.
The lyrics to her newest single “Throw Me a Party” address the emotions that arose from that chapter of her life in such a poignant and beautiful way, I truly can’t imagine anyone not being moved by this song.
Lastly, I’d like to share one short little Rita story. Actually, not that short as it turns out, but I tried my best.
One of the many adventures Rita and I have shared over the decades of our friendship was the week in December of 2010 we attended “Date With Destiny” with the motivational speaker Tony Robbins (yah we did!) It was all Rita’s idea and not something that would have ever crossed my mind to do, much less right before the Christmas holidays (Have I ever mentioned delegating is not my forte but I’m sheer genius at procrastinating? I still had SO much to do!) But Rita had recently met Tony and was intrigued and, like everything else with Rita, her supreme enthusiasm was incredibly infectious (persuasive). It would be so great! Just the two us! (+ 2 thousand other people) A road trip! A week in the desert! Most of all, it was an opportunity to “connect with our ultimate purpose and ignite our passion”, shape our own destinies, learn valuable life skills, set goals and live our Best Life! All things she assured me I needed…like, right away.
I guess I could allow Dennis to pick the Christmas tree for once (if he sent enough photos. And video. And I left specific dimensions….and a colour swatch)
That first Road Trip morning Rita bounced into the car with an open mind, plenty of gum and, of course, a fabulous blow-out that would last a week. Priorities. I brought road snacks, the appropriate amount of wine for 6 nights (in case there was a wine drought in Palm Desert) and all the manicure shop gossip magazines I’m not allowed to have in our house. This was going to be awesome!
For 6 solid 14-15 hour days we Dated the hell out of our Destinies. Imagine if you will, a huge venue, freeezing cold- lest anyone attempt a quick catnap, filled to the max with a couple of thousand people (a good 1/3rd repeat attendees) every last one pumped, primed and eager to fashion their own destiny. I’m here to tell you the man can T A L K. For hours. And hours. He is funny and fascinating. Fascinating! He drinks a litre of water in one go like it’s 4 ounces and doesn’t even take a bathroom break. He’s a towering 6′ 7″ Alpha male in the extreme. Sand kicked in the face of “The Rock” without a backward glance. We were seated in the front row all week (no sneaking out) so from our vantage he appeared to be 8ft. His teeth alone were bigger than my head. Prowling the stage to & fro like a panther he addresses the entire vast auditorium but appears to always be looking directly at you. My terror of possibly being singled out to participate was utterly paralysing.
Have you ever felt deeply introspective, seriously fatigued, exhilarated yet slightly skeptical, hungry, worried and freezing cold all at the same time? Each night we fell into bed so exhausted we could barely talk. I vaguely remember rolling into a 7-11 at 1:00am one night for food and gas and sharing a laughing fit verging on hysteria. We had dinner at 1:am in a 7-11. Just had to repeat that for effect. The wine and magazines never even made it out of the car trunk.
Tony warned everyone that after A Date With Destiny many attendees get sick. A combination of lack of sleep & food, the freezing cold room and the general sensory overload of pushing yourself way out of your comfort zone. Which is exactly what I did. Not the comfort zone part (read; fail) but I went home and promptly got the flu. Rita didn’t of course. Rita returned home with her new sense of purpose and goals outstretched before her and became an amazing singer/songwriter within a few years. At the age of 52. Her real passion all along you see, was music.
So, there you go. And Tony? I’m not sure how much credit he gets from all this but I like to think that our D. W. D. experience played some small part in how it all turned out! And ps. the Christmas tree was lovely.
Towards the end of our Date With Destiny surviving on coffee and pork rinds.
I couldn’t be happier to congratulate, celebrate and applaud my friend for being such an inspiration to us all, at any age!!
Listen to Rita’s single
or watch the video HERE
and link to download or stream “Halfway to Home” entire album HERE
Have you listened to the new single yet?! Would love to hear from you!
Happy Weekend and Spring to All!
“When You Wish Upon a Star” Lyrics by Leigh Harline and Ned Washington for Walt Disney’s 1940 adaptation on Pinnochio.