There’s more to Gayle King than just being Oprah’s best friend.
She’s not only editor-at-large of O, The Oprah Magazine and the co-host of “CBS This Morning,” but she also has two kids, William and Kirby.
In May 2012, King was one of the honorees of the annual Outstanding Mother of the Year Awards at the Pierre Hotel in Manhattan. I had the chance to chat with her about motherhood, Oprah and balancing it all. Here’s what she had to say:
Q. What did your mom teach you about parenting?
My mom passed away a long time ago, when I was 40. My mom was fearless. She said I could do anything, and I just happened to believe her. I wanted to raise my own son and daughter to be responsible, loving and kind human beings. You don’t have to be jerky people to succeed in the world. I was always very mindful of that – of always treating people with respect and treating people nicely.
Q. How do you balance work and life?
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all. If you talk to 10 mothers you’ll get 10 different answers on the balance question – which I hate, by the way, because there isn’t an easy answer. You make mistakes along the way. You drop balls along the way. But in the end, you do the best you can. Maya Angelou always said when you know better you do better. My thing was if you drop a ball, don’t beat yourself up. Just do better the next time. I didn’t get hung up about that kind of stuff.
Q. What have your kids taught you?
I think that when you’re a mother you rediscover everything all over again. It’s so great to see something from their eyes growing up. Whether it’s going to Disney World or watching a TV show. Just taking in the wonder of life is always fascinating to me. Kids are like little sponges – they really do want to please you. They’re little human beings with feelings and emotions, and kids don’t want to disappoint you anymore than I as a mother wanted to disappoint them. Now they’re (in their 20s). I’m (58) and we’re still very tight. I like that. I like that my opinion matters to them just like their opinions matter to me.
Q. What’s it like to have Oprah as your best friend?
Well, all women know what it’s like to have a best friend.
By JENNIFER BERGER