Former First Lady Michelle Obama recently sat down with friend Oprah Winfrey to discuss her journey after the White House.
During Winfrey’s 2020 Vision: Your Life in Focus tour, sponsored by Weight Watchers, she and Obama took the stage at the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York to discuss life after her husband’s, Barack Obama, term as president ended in January 2017. The full interview aired on Feb 12.
During the interview, Obama went on to tell Winfrey that she is still on a mission according to The Root.
“The next phase of my journey of becoming is really continuing to make sure that what I do has meaning and purpose to somebody outside of myself,” she said. “I want to empower the next generation of politicians, and community activists, and teachers and doctors and lawyers. I want to be a part of laying out a set of values and principles that we can all be proud of; of this country.”
Obama is now a best-selling author and Grammy winner thanks to her book “Becoming,” which is now the best-selling memoir ever, and its Audiobook. Still, she told her friend Winfrey that she remembers where she came from.
“I’m Michelle from the South Side of Chicago,” she said. “[W]e were raised with the [idea that] that’s enough. You be grateful for what you have and you don’t look at the next thing. You be happy with what you have, and that’s how we worked in the White House. That didn’t change because we moved to a different house…The House didn’t define us, it’s the values that defined us.”
The former First Lady and the president are now empty-nesters now that their daughters Malia, 21, and daughter Sasha, 18, are college students. Obama went on to explain that it is important for their daughters to find their own way. She said it was also important that they were “checked by somebody younger than me.”
“They cannot define themselves by looking at each other or looking at me or their dad,” Obama said. “They have to take the time to get to know themselves—give themselves a moment to figure out who they want to be in the world, not who they think I want them to be, not what the rest of the world says about them, but to really think about how they want to shape their lives and how they want to move in this world. So, I don’t want them measuring themselves by external influences, and for young girls, that is hard to do.”
With this being Valentine’s Day weekend, of course, many find themselves looking Obama and her husband for love inspiration. Obama has always kept it real about how much hard work goes into their marriage and according to The Root, she said they are finally seeing each other for the first time in a long time.
“You can have chunks of hard, bad times and if that’s how you define your marriage by just the hard times, then you’ll miss the truth of what’s really there,” Obama said.
Watch the full interview below.