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Star Jones Reynolds: Oh How the Lady Does ‘Shine!’

By Deardra Shuler
Photo Credit: ABC /Yolanda Perez

Star Jones Reynolds chatted amicably at Elaine’s Restaurant about her book “Shine: A Physical, Emotional, & Spiritual Journey To Finding Love” and the weight loss that has given her a new outlook on life. She is feeling renewed and anxious to share with other women information that will transform them physically, financially, emotionally, and spiritually. Star is beaming these days. She has found love and embraced a healthier lifestyle that has left her feeling good within and without, a lifestyle that has allowed her to shine.

Born to a single mom in the small town of Badin, North Carolina, Star decided upon a law career early on. Shuttling between both sets of grandparents the first 8 years of her life, she eventually moved with her mother to Trenton, New Jersey, where her Mom met and married her stepfather. “Until I met my husband Al, my stepfather was the love of my life. Although my biological father and I are good friends, my stepfather is my true Dad. He is the man that raised the bar so high, I was willing to wait for the man who could reach it,” stated the newly wedded Mrs. Reynolds. “My Mom is a salt of the earth kind of woman. We talk everyday” said Star who presently co-hosts “The View” on the ABC network.

“As a child, you think you want cool parents but you really don’t. Children need parents who set boundaries, teach responsibility and exact discipline. I had that in my life. I did not do drugs, drink, or become pregnant as a youth. I attribute that to my upbringing” remarked Star pleasantly. “Occasionally on “The View” we discuss discipline. My co-host, Meredith, felt children shouldn’t fear their parents. I never feared physical harm from my parents, I only feared disappointing them. My grandmother allowed me to aim high. She could have said: “’Be a nurse, a teacher or work at the post office; lawyers are not for US,’ but instead she encouraged me.” Star recalls.

Obviously her grandmother’s guidance paid off because Star passed the bar the first time. She went into criminal law in Brooklyn, NY and by 29, was an assistant district attorney. “When you are African American, female, and pass the bar the first time, you are perceived as a star. I had passion for the law. Though I don’t practice now, I do miss the interaction with the victims and their families. I keep my license current and that education in my back pocket because no one gave me that, I earned it.”

In 1991, Star began commentating on the trials of William Kennedy Smith, Rodney King, and the O.J. Simpson trial, etc., for Court TV. “I enjoyed legal reporting” commented Star. “I never get tired of talking about the law or discussing my faith. I also love to discuss how much I love my husband, Al. Before I was married, I made a list of what I wanted in life. I ended up with many of the things on that list. One is my loving husband, Al. I love being his wife” said the ebullient author.

Star talked about her new shape. “There was a period when I was unhappy and emotionally drained. Some women feel that since I’ve lost weight, I’ve abandoned them. However, I would say to them, there is a huge difference between being full figured and fit. I moved from full figured to fat, from fat to obese and from obese to morbidly obese. I weighed over 300 pounds. I was killing myself. I had asthma and couldn’t go anywhere without my inhaler. I could barely walk a block without getting tired. I was lethargic, sedentary, ate the wrong foods, and didn’t exercise” recalled Star. “I had to be honest with myself. I consulted several doctors to make certain I secured a good health regime. I encourage people seeking to lose weight to do the same. I give good information in my book “Shine” about exercise, proper food, and all those things necessary for a healthier lifestyle. My book is very informative. I discuss bringing out the best in oneself; whether that is via healthcare, finance, love, friends, fashion, hair, make-up, skincare or whatever is needed to feel good about oneself” explained Jones Reynolds.

“Shine” does not promise a quick fix but does provide a way to find the ‘new’ you. “The media focuses on the last 50 lbs I’ve lost, suggesting it was fast. What they don’t realize is it took more than 2 _ years. Prior to meeting Al, I had lost 40 lbs. After marriage, I went on to lose another 120 lbs” explained Star of her accomplishment to date. “I make better choices now. I eat smaller portions and daily walk the path of self-fulfillment. My husband, Al, has a lot to do with my approaching life this way.”

Star is on the International Board of Advisors for the organization “Dress for Success.” “They have seen me go from a size 26 to a size 10 over the years and been the beneficiary of it” remarked Star. “I plan to highlight the work of Dress for Success in 7 cities on my book tour. “Dress for Success” clients will be given clothes to wear for job interviews. I will also host events informing people about “Dress for Success” said Star who is the newly appointed AOL Relationship and Love Coach, part of AOL’s Best Selling Authors in Different Areas of Life promotion.

Life is good for Star these days. She has found happiness and self-fulfillment. “I am a woman on her path. I trust in my faith and take care of my health. I am protecting my mind, body, and spirit. I am also enjoying the process of writing, so I may continue to do that. If it never gets any better than this, I am satisfied for where I am now. Although, I admit, I can’t wait to see what God has in store for me next.”

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