Roberta Flack’s voice fills the room the night my friend Julian asks me about my first boyfriend. Julian sings Roberta’s sensual lyrics as he pulls me closer to him on the dance floor. I can still feel his body next to mine.
“You know as I look at you tonight Diane, I wish I had been the first boy to fall in love with you.”
I was all of eleven years old when my neighbor Johnny fell for me. Johnny came to my backyard with his nana’s diamond ring, got down on his knee and asked me to marry him. He claimed his Italian grandparents married when they were twelve, just one year older than us.
“Oh my God Diane, that was 1953 when Johnny brought you a diamond. You were an emerging Diva then. Just the thought of you in a poodle skirt is turning me on. You still have some of that eleven-year-old spunkiness in you. I’m so attracted to you right now. Meet me at the Brown Palace for a nightcap,” he says as he puts his hand on my butt.
Witty, profound and a bit cheeky, Seven Lives: A Diva’s Story is a journey through seven stages of life marked by seven nicknames: Rare Orchid: a survivor, Tough Cookie: a performer, Ginger: an academy girl, Princess: a wife, Gypsy: a free-spirited single woman, Diva: a wealthy entrepreneur, Collector: an art connoisseur.
Over the years, I discover being a Diva is not limited to being a show off, self-important, pretentious, or even obnoxious. I’m certainly not an opera singer, the definition of the word Diva in Webster’s dictionary. I define Diva as a person who is strong, self-aware, and free of society’s boxes.
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